Korean Speakers

Moonsoon Choi / Governor, Gangwon provincial government (Korea)

Moonsoon Choi received the M.A. in English Language and Literature (Seoul National University).
He has worked as Governor of Gangwon province since 2011 after serving as CEO of MBC(Munhwa Broadcasting Corporation), the 13th Chairman of Korean Broadcasters Association, the 18th National Assemblyman, and a member of Democratic Party's Special Committee to support PyeongChang' Bid to host 2018 Olympic Winter Games.
He continuously strives for the increase of Gangwon's brand value and for sustainable development by hosting various events such as the CBD COP12 and PyeongChang 2018 Olympic Winter Games.



Taeyoung Yeom / Mayor, Suwon city (Korea)

Taeyoung Yeom received a bachelor’s degree in Agrichemical from Seoul National University.
Mayor Yeom is currently serving as ICLEI Global Executive Committee Member, Co-Chair of Local Decentralization Movement and President of World Toilet Association. Previously he was Secretary to President Roh Moo-hyun for National Agenda, Standing Audit of Korea National Park Service, Secretary General and Chair of Steering Committee of Local Sustainability Alliance of Korea among others.
The 5th and 6th elected Mayor of Suwon, Mr. Yeom is working on various and innovative policies to create a human-oriented, economically vibrant city.



Jonggeel Je / Mayor, Ansan City (Korea)

Jonggeel Je received the Ph.D in Biological Oceanography from Seoul National University.
He is currently Mayor of Ansan city, Gyeonggi Province and a member of Gangwon Province Advisory Committee for CBD/COP12. He was previously director of City & Nature Centre, co-president of Ecotourism Korea, member of the 17thnationalassembly,AdjunctProfessor,HanyangUniversity.
He endeavors to make Ansan City a safe city putting top priority on people, an impartial and livable welfare city where citizens actively joins in, and an international environmental and cultural ecological city.



Choonghoon Cho / Mayor, Suncheon city (Korea)

Choonghoon Cho received a Master’s degree from Graduate School of Public Administration, Chung-Ang University.
He is the 8th Mayor of Suncheon (the 6thMayor by Popular Vote) and the Chairman of the National Association of Mayors. He also served as the 40th President of the Korea Junior Chamber, Central Vice Chairman of New Era, New Milennium Democratic Party, Special Adviser to Democratic Party Chairman, and the 7th Mayor of Suncheon (the 4th Mayor of Popular vote).
With a vision of Korea's Ecological Capital, Suncheon, Mayor Cho Choong-hoon has exerted every effort to establish a livable happy city which guarantees high quality of citizena’ lives based on cultures and ecology.



Jaekook Sim / Governor, Pyeongchang County (Korea)

Jaekook Sim received a Bachelor’s degree in International Trade and MA in Business and Administration from Catholic Kwandong University.
He serves as Mayor of Pyeongchang after working as the 4th Vice-chairman and the 5th chairman of Pyeongchang-gun council, and Vice-chairman of Gangwon Association of council chairs.
He endeavors to ensure local development through balanced development programs and successful Pyeongchang 2018 Olympic Winter Games.



Soonsun Lee / Governor, Inje County (Korea)

Soonsun Lee is incumbent 5th and 6th Governor elected by popular vote.
He passed the Civil service Examination in 1976, retired at Vice-grade-Ⅱ official, the Chairman of the Border Area Governor Committee and Chief of Inje Culture Foundation. He implemented the Manchurian Sika Restoration Initiative as a General Director of the Deer Ecological Restoration Movement Headquaters.
He has promoted Neo-conceptual Policy for developing a Special County integrating Environment, Ecology, and Forest based on Tourism.
Inje was designated to RCE County by UNU in 2012.12. and he has implemented sustainable development education aiming at realization of life society.



Yeonman Jeong / Vice-Minister, Ministry of Environment (Korea)

Yeonman Jeong holds a degree in Social Education from Seoul National University (SNU); Masters of Public Administration from SNU and Public Policy from Regional Planning from University of Wisconsin-Madison (USA) and a Ph.D. in Environment Law from Dong-A University.
He is currently Vice-Minister of Environment. After working for the Ministry of Unification, he started to work for the Ministry of Environment (MoE) since 1988. He was a director of Climate & Air Quality Management division (1996). He also worked for Geum River Basin Environment Office as Director General (2007). He was Director General of Nature Conservation Bureau, MoE (2008) and Deputy Minister of Planning & Coordination Department, MoE (2011).



Kwanghee Nam / Director General, Nature Conservation Bureau, Ministry of Environment (Korea)

Kwang-hee Nam holds a bachelor’s degree in Public Administration from Korea University. He completed the Public Service from Seoul National University (SNU) and a Master’s degree from University of Wisconsin (USA).
He is currently Director General of nature conservation bureau, Ministry of Environment (MoE). He passed the highest civil service and public administration examination in 1991. He was Director General for Presidential Committee on Green Growth and Director for the air quality control board, MoE.



Duglae Kim / Director General, Support Bureau of Gangwon Provincial government for CBD/COP12

Duglae Kim received a Master’s degree in Public Administration (Kangwon National University).
He serves as the Director General of Support Bureau of Gangwon Province for CBD/COP12 and also of Green Resources Bureau after working as Communications Director of Gangwon international sports committee, Vice mayor of Gangneung city, and Secretary general of Gangwon-do Sports Council.
He is the chief officer of environment, forest, and energy in Gangwon, and he leads to improve the quality of life of Gangwon residents.



Sisung Kim / Chair, Gangwon Provincial Council (Korea)

Sisung Kim received a Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration from Catholic Kwandong University.
He serves as the 9th Chair of Gangwon provincial council for the first-half year of 2014 after working as a member of Gangwon provincial council since 2006, the 8th Chair of the Council steering committee, and the 8th Vice chair of Gangwon provincial council for the second-half year.
He tries to make productive provincial council by inspecting and examining administrative affairs, and to eventually make better Gangwon for the resident.



Namchoon Kim / Chairman, Urban biodiversity forum

Namchoon Kim holds posts as professor of landscape architecture department of Dankook University, President of Korea society of environmental restoration technology, Chairman of urban biodiversity forum, Organizer of 2014 URBIO Korea Conference.
He has a BA, MA and Doctoral degree (Doctor of Agriculture) in landscape architecture, Seoul national university.
The 4th international conference of Urban Biodiversity and Design will be held in Korea, from October 9th to 12thinthemeof“Cities and Water: Conservation, Restoration and Biodiversity.”



Yeonhee Park / Director, ICLEI Korea Office

Yeon Hee Park has been Director of ICLEI Korea Office since October 2012.
She received the M.A. degree in Community Development from University of the Philippines, Diliman (UP Diliman).
She was executive director of ‘EcoMobility Festival 2013 Suwon Project’ and chief director of the Korea Institute Center for Sustainable Development (KICSD).



Foreign Speakers

Dr. Braulio Ferreira de Souza Dias / Executive Secretary, Convention on Biological Diversity

Braulio Dias joined the Secretariat for the Convention on Biological Diversity at the beginning of the United Nations Decade on Biodiversity and the first years of implementation of the Strategic Plan for Biodiversity 2011-2020.
He obtained a BSc in Biological Sciences from the University of Brasilia and went on to obtain his PhD in Zoology from the University of Edinburgh in 1981.
Dr. Dias has over three decades of experience in biodiversity science and policy and its implementation at national and international levels.



Mr. David Cadman / President, ICLEI – Local Governments for Sustainability

David Cadman is the President of ICLEI – Local Governments for Sustainability and member of the World Mayors Council on Climate Change.
He attended the University of the South in Tennessee, USA and earned a Master of Arts degree in Interdisciplinary and International Develop ­ment in Geneva.
As President of ICLEI, Mr Cadman has represented Local Government internation­ally at the United Nations Commission on Sustainable Development, the Conferences of the Parties to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change and the UN Convention of Biological Diversity.



Ms. Monika Zimmermann / Deputy Secretary General, ICLEI - Local Governments for Sustainability

Monika Zimmermann has been Deputy Secretary General of ICLEI since January 2013 and works at the ICLEI World Secretariat in Bonn, Germany.
As Organizer of the Mayors Summit at the CBD COP 9 in Bonn, she helped to establish the Biodiversity Summit for Cities and Subnational Government as a side event for each CBD COP. She has also been instrumental in the integration of Local Action for Biodiversity into ICLEI’s program portfolio.



Mr. Bojjala Gopala Krishna Reddy / Minister, Ministry of Forest, Government of Andhra Pradesh (India)

He is a very senior politician from Chittor District of Andhra Pradesh. He is a farmer by profession. He was a Minister of Information Technology and held various positions.



Mr. Sri Jogu Ramanna / Minister, Ministry of Forests & Environment, Government of Telangana (India)

As Minister, Jogu Ramanna is responsible for developing and strengthening the forests and environment sector in Adilabad District and overall Telangana State.
He was elected as a Member of Legislative Assembly (MLA) in 2014 and appointed as the Minister for Forests and Environment.
He was also elected as a MLA in 2009, responsible for overall development of the assembly constituency and sanction of funds to various departments, execution of irrigations works and other issues in the constituency.



Mr. Mohammad Majid Hussain / Mayor, Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation (India)

Mohammed Majid Hussain is a graduate in Bachelor of Computer Applications (BCA) from Anwar-Ul-Uloom College, Osmania University, Hyderabad.
Before becoming the Mayor of Hyderabad in 2012, he the MIM (Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen) party and was elected as a corporator from Ahmed Nagar division in the 2009 municipal corporation elections. He is the youngest person to hold the Mayor post in the history of India.



Ms. Shela Patrickson / Manager, ICLEI Cities Biodiversity Center

Shela Patickson manages ICLEI’s global Cities Biodiversity Center, its various programs and projects, as well as ICLEI”s advocacy work for biodiversity, and has been part of the expert ICLEI technical team since 2008.
She holds an MSc in Environmental Science from the University of Utah (USA), and a BSc Honours in Botany / Environmental Science from the University of Cape Town (South Africa).



Mr. Andre Mader / Programme Officer, Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity

Andre Mader began working at ICLEI’s Cities Biodiversity Center in 2006. In 2011 he was seconded by ICLEI to the Secretariat of the CBD, where he is now spending a fourth year as the Secretariat’s Programme Officer for Local Authorities and Biodiversity.
He has an MSc in Conservation Biology from the University of Cape Town.
Andre’s interests are varied and generally nature-oriented, while his expertise includes the subnational implementation of the CBD and the biodiversity science-policy interface.



Mr. Andrew Rudd / Urban Environment Officer, Urban Planning and Design Branch, UN-Habitat

Andrew Rudd is the Urban Environment Officer for UN-Habitat. He is out-posted to New York from the Urban Planning & Design Branch in Nairobi, where he lived and worked for five years.
In New York he leads substantive advocacy for the Post-2015 Development Agenda (including SDGs) and manages a portfolio of normative and pilot projects related to urban sprawl, landscape connectivity and urban wetlands.
Andrew was also a lead author of Cities and Biodiversity Outlook: Action and Policyand has been a guest critic at Columbia University's Graduate School of Architecture, Planning & Preservation and guest lecturer at New York University's Schack Institute.



Prof. Thomas Elmqvist / Environment Officer, Urban Planning and Design Branch, UN-Habitat

Thomas Elmqvist is a professor in Natural Resource Management at Stockholm University. His research is focused on ecosystem services, land use change, natural disturbances and components of resilience including the role of social institutions.
He coordinates a major interdisciplinary research theme as part of the Stockholm Resilience Centre focusing on governance and management of ecosystem services in urban landscapes, involving 12 cities around the world.
He was involved in the Millennium Ecosystem Assessment and principal investigator of several multidisciplinary projects in Africa.



Dr. Cyriaque Sendashonga / Advisor, Programme and Policy Group, IUCN

Cyriaque Nikuze Sendashonga is the IUCN Global Director for the Programme and Policy Group.
Cyrie is a Rwandan-Canadian trained as a biologist, with a PhD in Zoology from the Free University of Brussels.
She has previously worked for the Center for International Forestry Research (CIFOR) as Regional Coordinator for CIFOR’s Central Africa Regional Office; the Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) as Head of the Biosafety Programme; United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) as Senior Programme Officer focal point for biodiversity and the International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI) in Nairobi as a Research Fellow.



Mr. Reinhard Limbach / Deputy Mayor, City of Bonn (Germany)

Reinhard Limbach has been member of the Christian Democratic Union (CDU) since 1984, and Bonn City Councilor from 2005. In July 2014, he was elected Deputy Mayor of Bonn.
Reinhard was born in Bonn and has been working in the real estate sector since 1983, founding his own real estate company in 1994.
His thematic work focusses on planning, economy, finance and municipal facility management.



Ms. Marta Subirà i Roca / Director General for Environmental Policy, Government of Catalonia (Spain)

Marta Subirà i Roca is the Director General for Environmental Policy for the Government of Catalonia and holds a Law degree from the Pompeu Fabra University (UPF).
Previously, she worked for 12 years as Deputy Mayor for the Environment, Transport, Communications and Civic Values in Sant Cugat del Vallès, a city noted for its leadership in innovation in the crowd of urban space. She also held the position of Vice President of the Institute of Strategic Management, Economic Development and Information Society of Sant Cugat 2003-2007.



Ms. Claude Audet-Robitaille / Director, International Organisations and Global Issues,Quebec Province (Canada)

Claude Audet-Robitaille has been an advisor on climate change and sustainable development since 2008 at Quebec's ministry of International Relations and Francophonie.
Her master studies focused on the implementation of the Convention on Biological Diversity in Central America.



Mr. Paul Dale / Technical Advisor, Secretariat for the Environment, São Paulo State (Brazil)

Paul Dale has been working at the São Paulo´s State Secretariat of the Environment since 1993.
He studied Agronomy at Viçosa Federal University; Coastal and Ocean Zones Integrated Management with COI-UNESCO and University of São Paulo; and a MSc in Environmental Science at University of Sao Paulo.
He is a member of IUCN´s Commission on Protected Areas, a former President of the Environmental Science Professional Association and provides technical support to the President of the National Council of the Mata Atlantica Biosphere Reserve.



Mr. Russell Galt / Project Coordinator, Biodiversity Information Management Directorate, South African National Biodiversity Institute (SANBI)

Russell Galt is a Project Coordinator at the South African National Biodiversity Institute (SANBI).
His role entails coordinating a network of African governments and research institutions to mobilize policy-relevant biodiversity data. He holds an LLM in Natural Resources Law and a BSc (Hons) in Ecological Science.
Previously, Russell worked for Axiom Venture Capital, ICLEI – Local Governments for Sustainability, and the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN). He is currently writing a book on urban heritage trees.



Prof. Norber Muller / President, Urban Biodiversity and Design Network (URBIO)

Norbert Müller is vegetation ecologist and Professor in Landscape Management and Restoration Ecology at the University of Applied Sciences Erfurt, Germany. His main research fields are in biodiversity and conservation biology with special emphasis on urban and riparian landscapes.
Before his university career in Japan and Germany he worked for 15 years at a local city government in Germany, responsible for biodiversity research and nature conservation.
In 2008 he founded the International network URBIO which is scientific partner of the CBD Mayor Group “Local Authorities” and is holding currently over 1000 researchers and practitioners from over 60 countries.



Dr. Jose Puppim de Oliviera / José Puppim de Oliviera

Senior Research Fellow, United Nations University, Institute for the Advanced Study of Sustainability (UNU-IAS).
Jose A. Puppim de Oliveira is a Senior Research Fellow at the United Nations University (UNU-IAS) in Japan.
Jose holds a degree in Engineering from the Aeronautics Technological Institute (ITA, Brazil); a Master of Regional Planning from Hokkaido University (Japan) and a Ph.D. in Planning from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT, USA).
He is interested in researching patterns of governance, institution building and policy implementation at different levels, looking at how global policies are translated into local policy implementation.



Dr. David Maddox / Founder & Editor-in-Chief, The Nature of Cities; Principal at Urban Oikos Partners LLC, New York; URBIS Advisory Board Chair

As Founder and Editor of The Nature of Cities and Principal of Urban Oikos Partners LLC, David Maddox works in the development and dissemination of useful knowledge for design and management of social-ecological systems in urban landscapes.
He hold a PhD in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, with a statistics minor, from Cornell University and lives in New York City.
David is committed to the health of the urban ecosystem—urban resilience, the application of ecosystem services for human welfare and livelihoods, and the effective and efficient monitoring and evaluation of these issues.



Mr. Donald Hobern / Executive Secretary, Global Biodiversity Information Facility

Donald Hobern is the Executive Secretary of the Global Biodiversity Information Facility and is responsible for coordinating the activities of a global network for sharing biodiversity data including 57 countries and many international organisations.
His career spans more than a quarter century in software development and biodiversity informatics.
He has a lifelong passion for natural history, participating in ornithological survey work and photographing insects, including a large selection of Australian moths.



Ms. Kadri Tillemann / Rapporteur, European Union Committee of the Regions on Multi-level Governance of Natural Capital; Chair of Keila Rural Municipality Council (Estonia)

Since 2010, Kadri Tillemann has been an active member in the European Union Committee of the Regions. She was the rapporteur for the Committee of the Regions Outlook opinion on “Multilevel governance in promoting the EU Biodiversity Strategy 2020 and implementing the international Aichi targets“.
She holds a Master’s degree in environmental sciences and her previous as well as current academic activities as a PhD student that is concentrated on biodiversity and green infrastructure issues.
She has been an active practitioner of sustainable local development in Keila Rural Municipality in Estonia since 2001 where she has been holding various posts from land-use advisor to mayor.



Ms. Kelly Torck / National Biodiversity Policy, Environment Canada, Environmental Ministry (Canada)

Kelly Torck is the Manager of National Biodiversity Policy in Environment Canada's Canadian Wildlife Service and has been with Environment Canada for nearly 25 years.
Since 2007, her work has focused on programs and strategies related to ecosystems and biodiversity, supporting domestic implementation of the Convention on Biological Diversity.
Kelly also co-chairs the federal-provincial-territorial Biodiversity Working Group.



Ms. Jacqueline Kozak-Thiel / Sustainability Coordinator, State of Hawaii (USA)

Jacqueline Kozak-Thiel is the first-ever Sustainability Coordinator for the State of Hawaii.
Ms. Kozak-Thiel received her Masters in Urban and Regional Planning as an East West Center Fellow at the University of Hawaii, with a research focus on the implementation of sustainability plans.
As State Sustainability Coordinator and Steering Committee member of Hawaii Green Growth, she helped to launch the Aloha+ Challenge, which was announced and recognized at the UN Conference on Small Island Developing States in September.



Mr. Steve Hounsell / Chair, Ontario Biodiversity Council (Canada)

Steve Hounsell is the Chair of the Ontario Biodiversity Council, the President and Chair of Forests Ontario, a director of the Canadian Business and Biodiversity Council, and the Algonquin to Adirondacks Collaborative.
He is a retired biologist who spent his career with Ontario Power Generation (OPG) and the former Ontario Hydro, where he managed their biodiversity programs.
Steve is a Past President of Ontario Nature and a past director of the Natural Step Canada.



Ms. Natasha Govender / Specialist Ecologist, Environment Planning and Climate Protection Department eThekwini Municipality, Durban (South Africa)

Natasha has worked as a specialist ecologist in local government for just under six years, gaining experience in biodiversity planning and implementation at the conservation coalface.
She has an academic background in Marine Ecology, having received her Master of Science degree from the University of KwaZulu Natal while interning with the eThekwini municipality, the local governing body responsible for the City of Durban.
As the Durban Climate Change Strategy Biodiversity Expert, Natasha has played a key role in demonstrating how cities like Durban can lead the way in biodiversity and climate change adaptation.



Dr. Roberto Cavalcanti / Secretary, Biodiversity and Forests, Ministry of Environment, Brazil

Roberto Cavalcanti, Biodiversity and Forests Secretary at the Brazilian Ministry of Environment, holds a PhD in Biology from McGill University in Montreal and is professor in the Department of Zoology at the University of Brasilia.
He has published numerous scientific articles, books, chapters, and popular articles in Brazil and internationally, on ecology, conservation, biodiversity, ornithology, Brazilian ecosystems, and sustainability.



Ms. Chantal Van Ham / EU Programme Officer, Focal point for local and regional authorities, IUCN

Chantal van Ham is EU Programme Officer in the European Union Representative Office of IUCN – International Union for Conservation of Nature and is responsible for IUCNs activities on urban biodiversity in Europe.
Before joining IUCN, she worked as Finance Specialist with Pricewaterhouse Coopers in the Netherlands. She has a degree in International Business and an MSc in Forest and Nature Conservation Policy.
Chantal is passionate about nature and perceives the exchange with people from different backgrounds as an enriching and inspiring starting point for sustainable change.



Mr. Sunandan Tiwari / Deputy Director, ICLEI South Asia Secretariat

Sunandan joined ICLEI in 2010. He holds a Masters degree in Ecology from Salim Ali School of Ecology, Pondicherry University and has over seventeen years of experience in project management and implementation in the development sector.
Working with local governments for the uptake of innovative ideas and practices through effective policy advocacy has been one of the key aspects of his work. Currently at ICLEI South Asia, he is the main lead for urban climate change resilience projects and is responsible for program development.



Mr. Masaru Horikami / Director, Office for Mainstreaming Biodiversity, Ministry of the Environment (Japan)

Mr. Masaru Horikami has been director of office for mainstreaming biodiversity since June 2013.
He has been working in Japanese Ministry of the Environment since 1989.
His work was mainly focused on nature conservation issues.



Ms. Nopasika Malta Qwathekana / Senior Policy Adviser; CBD Technical (Principal) Focal Point, International Biodiversity and Heritage Cooperation, Department of Environmental Affairs (DEA), National Government of South Africa (South Africa)

Ms. Malta Qwathekana is the Senior Policy Adviser in the International Biodiversity and Heritage Cooperation Department for South Africa’s Department of Environmental Affairs (DEA).
She serves as South Africa’s National Focal Point for the CBD (Technical); the Global Taxonomy Initiative; the Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice; the Global Strategy for Plant Conservation; and the Clearing House Mechanism.



Mr. Masao Hayakawa / Co-director on Biodiversity Promotion, Environmental Planning Department, Environmental Affairs Bureau, City of Nagoya

Masao Hayakawa has been Co-director on Biodiversity Promotion of the city’s Environmental Affairs Bureau’s Environmental Planning Department since April 2013.
He received the Bachelor of Economics from Nagoya City University (Japan) in March 1987.
As a city government official, Mr. Hayakawa used to work at a city’s ward office, and engage himself in work related to environment such as holding nature observation meetings for local people and conducting surveys with people on rare species in the area, to promote people’s understanding of the remaining local nature and biodiversity.



Mr. Yoshikazu Naito / Director, Promotion of Green Policy, Natural Environment Division, Tokyo Metropolitan Government (Japan)

Mr. Naito became the member of Tokyo Metropolitan Government in 1998.
He received his Masters in Horticulture from Chiba University.
He was engaged in “Implementation Program for the 10-Year Tokyo Plan” in the Headquarters of the Governor of Tokyo was responsible for dissemination of Tokyo culture in the Bureau of Citizens and Cultural Affairs. Currently, he is in charge of promoting urban greening and biodiversity in Tokyo.



Mr. Paul Baskcomb / Acting General Manager of Growth & Development, City of Greater Sudbury, Ontario, Canada.

Paul Baskcomb has been Acting General Manager of Growth & Development at the City of Greater Sudbury since August, 2013. He is an urban planner by profession and has also served as Director of Planning Services at the City since 2009.
He has an undergraduate degree in Geography from Laurentian University, a Master in Environmental Studies degree from York University and a Bachelor of Education degree from the University of Toronto.



Mr. Han Qunli / Director, Division of Ecological and Earth Sciences & Secretary, Man and the Biosphere (MAB) Programme, UNESCO

Mr. Han is the Director, Division of Ecological and Earth Sciences (SC/EES) and Secretary, Man and the Biosphere (MAB) Programme of UNESCO. He joined UNESCO in 1990.
He graduated from the University of Science and Technology of China in 1980 (USTC) in computer sciences and did fellowship study in environmental information systems in 1985-86 in Italy.
Mr. Han has contributed to the formulation and implementation of MAB regional agenda in ecosystem management and research. In July 2011, he was appointed as the Director of Science Executive Office and in July 2013 to the current post.



Dr. Tanya Arbrahamse / CEO, South African National Biodiversity Institute

In 2007, Dr. Tanya Abrahamse was appointed the first CEO of the South African National Biodiversity Institute (SANBI), a public entity responsible for biodiversity research, policy support, knowledge and information, human capital development and the National Botanical Gardens network.
Tanya Abrahamse is a natural scientist trained in Zambia and the UK, with a wide range of management and leadership experience in environmental and developmental policies and processes.
She was recently appointed to the UN Secretary General’s inaugural 26 person Scientific Advisory Board.



Dr. Katia Karousakis / Environmental economist, Biodiversity lead – Climate, Biodiversity and Water Division, Environment Directorate, OECD

Katia Karousakis has been an environmental economist at the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) since 2006, where she leads the work on biodiversity and ecosystems.
She received her Ph.D. from University College London, UK, and her Masters from Duke University, USA.
Katia has worked economic instruments for biodiversity conservation and sustainable use, biodiversity finance, REDD, biodiversity and development, and climate change. Prior to this she worked at the U.S. EPA on climate change.



Cllr Johannes van der Merwe / Mayoral Committee Member for Energy, Environment and Spatial Planning, City of Cape Town (South Africa)

Councillor Johannes van der Merwe is the City of Cape Town’s Mayoral Committee Member for Energy, Environment and Spatial Planning.
Holding a PhD in Economics and Politics from the University of Free State, Cllr van der Merwe has been a City Councillor since 2008 and is a former Chairperson of the Finance Portfolio Committee and Member of the Finance and Administration Working Group at the South African Local Government Association.
Cllr van der Merwe is currently a member of the Mayoral Urban Regeneration Programme sub-committee and represents a number of City Improvement programmes around the City of Cape Town.



Ms. Elsie Lefebvre / Executive Committee member, City of Montréal (Canada)

Elsie Lefebvre is an elected City Councillor since 2009, and the Associate Councillor to the City Executive Committee for transports.
She holds a Master’s degree in International Studies from University of Montréal.
Elsie Lefebvre is the Chairman of the Commission on water, the environment, sustainable development and large parks. She was Vice President of the City Council between 2010 and 2013, the first woman to hold this position. Between 2004 and 2007, she was an elected Member of the Québec provincial Parliament.



Ms. Wan Ping / Director, Natural Ecology Department, Sichuan Environmental Protection (China)

Ping Wan has been Director of Natural Ecology Department, Sichuan Environmental Protection since January 2013,and Deputy Director of the department since 2005.
She graduated from Sichuan Normal University and majored in economic management.
She works in ecological protection and management and organizes and coordinates the biodiversity conservation in Sichuan Province, China.



Mr. Pavan Sukhdev / Special Advisor and Head, UNEP’s Green Economy Initiative (TEEB)

Pavan Sukhdev is Founder-CEO of GIST Advisory, a specialist consulting firm which helps governments and corporations discover, measure, value, and manage their impacts on natural and human capital. He is a Visiting Fellow at Yale University, where he was awarded the 2011 McCluskey Fellowship and wrote his book “Corporation 2020”.
Earlier, he was Special Adviser and Head of UNEP’s Green Economy Initiative, and lead author of their report “Towards a Green Economy”. He was also Study Leader for the G8+5 commissioned project on The Economics of Ecosystems and Biodiversity (“TEEB”).



Mr. Hideaki Omura / Governor, Aichi Prefecture (Japan)

Hideaki Ohmura has been the Governor of Aichi Prefecture since 2011.
Holding an LL.B. from Tokyo University, Hideaki Ohmura joined the Japanese Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries in 1982, and has held a number of Parliamentary and Cabinet positions since.



Mr. Troy Pickard / Mayor, Joondalup (Australia)

Mayor Pickard has been involved in Local Government since 2001, making significant contributions in two of Western Australia’s largest Local Government Authorities – the City of Stirling, as a Councillor and Deputy Mayor, and then the City of Joondalup where he was first elected to the Officer of Mayor in 2006 and then re-elected as Mayor in 2009 and most recently in October 2013.
In June 2012 Mayor Pickard was appointed to the international organisation ICLEI – Local Governments for Sustainability Global Executive Board, holding the global portfolio of biodiversity and ecosystems and Chairman of the International BiodiverCities Advisory Committee.



Mr. Mubarak Sserunga Munyagwa / Mayor, Kampala Capital City Authority, Kawempe Division Urban Council (Uganda)

Mubarak Sserunga Munyagwa is the Mayor and Political Head of Kampala Capital City Authority Kawempe Division/Municipality.
He holds a B.A Degree in Science, Physics and Mathematics attained in Makerere University.
He is a direct elected Mayor (2012-2016) of one of the Five Divisions which make up Kampala Capital City Authority, the Government level directly below the Central Government.



Mr. Alain Chabrolle / Vice President, Government of Rhône-Alpes Region, Regional Council (France)

Alain Chabrolle has been Executive Vice President for Health and the Environment of the Rhône-Alpes Regional Council since January 2014.
A naturalist and a chemical engineer specializing in remediation, Alain Chabrolle has taken an active part in the defense and promotion of environmental education and sustainable development for over 25 years.



Ms. Amy Fraenkel / Principal Officer, Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity

Amy Fraenkel joined the Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) in October 2013 as Principal Officer for Mainstreaming, Partnerships and Outreach, a new Division in the CBD Secretariat.
She graduated from Grinnell College with a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science and a concentration in environmental studies. She obtained her law degree from Harvard University.
Amy has more than 25 years of experience in international environmental law and policy. She has worked in inter-governmental organizations, the executive and legislative branches of the United States government, and the private sector.