Gaspar de Portola
The Jesuits had established 14 missions in the previous 70 years. All of these properties were located in Baja California and were turned over to the Franciscans. Father Junipero Serra was appointed by the Franciscans to administer these missions as well as establish new ones in Alta California. Gaspar de Portola was also involved in this transition.
In 1768, he organized several major expeditions in Alta California to explore the land and located suitable locations for settlement. He reached San Diego in 1769 and then left with Father Crespi to explore north. He went as far as San Francisco, but missed his goal of Monterey Bay because of heavy fog.
After returning south, he embarked for Monterey again in 1771. He traveled overland with Father Serra and established Mission San Carlos Borroméo del Rio Carmelo in the Carmel Valley. Mission Carmel was the center of Franciscan activities in Alta California for the next several decades.