Our Mission

The mission of The Protect Our Communities Foundation is to protect rural communities and natural resources in southern California and northern Baja California from unnecessary and harmful large-scale and industrial energy projects, and to advance smart energy solutions.

Support POC

The Protect Our Communities Foundation is a 501(c)(3) non-profit corporation. Donations are tax deductible as allowed by law.


The Protect Our Communities Foundation Board of Directors currently has four members from communities across San Diego County:

Denis Trafecanty
Co-Founder and President
Santa Ysabel, CA

Denis Trafecanty co-founded The Protect Our Communities Foundation in December, 2006. He currently serves as President of POC. Mr. Trafecanty has worked for Accountants Direct as a Principal since July 2008. Prior to Accountants Direct, he was the Managing Partner for the San Diego practice of Tatum, LLC for eight years.

Mr. Trafecanty has over thirty years of business and financial experience including over twenty three years as the Chief Financial Officer for a broad range of companies, both public and private, with annual revenues ranging from $2 million to $460 million. He was previously licensed as a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) for the State of California. He graduated from Loyola/Marymount University (formerly Loyola University) in Los Angeles, California with a BA degree in Accounting.

Mr. Trafecanty has been a marathoner for the last 25 years and an ultra marathoner for the last 18 years. He has successfully completed over twelve 100 mile runs and over 125 organized runs of 26.2 miles or longer.

Donna Tisdale
Boulevard, CA

Donna Tisdale is Secretary of The Protect Our Communities Foundation. She co-founded Backcountry Against Dumps (BAD) in 1989, and currently serves as President. Since founding BAD, Ms. Tisdale has become a vocal rural advocate and writes columns for various backcountry papers on local issues that involve threats to local rural and natural communities, quality of life, and public health and safety.

Ms. Tisdale serves as the Chair of the Boulevard Planning Group and is an active member of County Supervisor Diane Jacob’s Backcountry Revitalization Committee and SD County’s Intergrated Waste Management Task Force. She was previously on the Board of Directors of the Boulevard Volunteer Fire and Rescue Department.

In 2005 she produced a documentary about the Sunrise Powerlink: “A Question of Power.” Ms. Tisdale is a retired rancher/farmer.

Laura Cyphert
Lakeside, CA

Laura Cyphert joined The Protect Our Community board in March 2009. Ms. Cyphert is a Certified Public Accountant and a Senior Audit Manager at the firm Moss Adams, LLP. Her audit practice is focused primarily on high technology, life science, and Manufacturing and Distribution Companies in the San Diego region.

In February of 2009, Ms. Cyphert founded the East County Community Action Coalition (ECCAC) in response to the Sunrise Powerlink. Since then ECCAC has become a vital force in the fight against the powerlink, and in rallying East County residents to work together.

Ms. Cyphert was in the US Army Reserves from 1987-1995 as a Journalist and Psychological Operations Specialist. She received her degree in Business Administration, with an emphasis in Accounting, from San Diego State University in 1994.

Bill Powers
San Diego, CA

Bill Powers, P.E., is an energy expert with extensive knowledge and experience in the fields of energy and environmental engineering, air emissions control, and regional energy planning. He works with clients throughout the United States and Latin America, providing expert testimony and analysis, strategic planning, and equipment testing for public sector and private industry clients.

Mr. Powers has authored technical studies on a variety of energy-related topics, including: distributed generation-based strategic energy plan for the San Diego region, gas turbine air emission controls, power plant cooling systems, integrated strategic energy and environmental planning in the California – Baja California border region, and use of integrated gasification combined cycle power generation to facilitate carbon dioxide capture and sequestration in Midwestern coal-burning states. Mr. Powers is a voting member of San Diego Association of Governments Energy Working Group. He received his Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering from Duke University and Masters of Public Health in Environmental Sciences from the University of North Carolina. Mr. Powers has been a registered professional engineer in California since 1986.