Speakers' biographies

Brer Adams

Associate Director, Macquarie Global Investments
Brer Adams leads BioCarbon, a forest carbon business with invested support from Global Forest Partners LP, IFC and Macquarie Bank. Adams is an associate director with Macquarie Global Investments, a division of Macquarie Bank where he has focussed on investment opportunities linked to climate change and has experience in structuring and raising finance for environmental assets, including for forest and renewable energy developments. Prior to joining Macquarie, Adams was an adviser to government and was chief of staff in a climate change portfolio.

Kenneth Andrasko

Kenneth Andrasko is with the Carbon Finance Unit of the Environment Department at  the World Bank, and with the Facility Management Team for the Forest Carbon Partnership Facility, assisting 37 tropical countries developing national programmes on REDD+.  He worked at the US Environmental Protection Agency's Climate Change Division until 2007 and on the Clinton Administration's UNFCCC Kyoto negotiating team. Andrasko was also lead author or editor for 5 UNFCCC IPCC reports, including AR4 WGIII Forestry mitigation chapter in 2007; Special Report on LULUCF in 2000.

David Antonioli

CEO, Verified Carbon Standard Association, United States
David Antonioli is chief executive officer of the Verified Carbon Standard Association, the non-profit organisation that manages the VCS. In this position David oversees the management of the VCS Program, charts the course for VCS strategy and policy development, and spearheads outreach to government, business and environmental leaders around the world. He has worked in carbon markets since 1994, working for leading global organisations including EcoSecurities, USAID and ICF International. David holds a bachelor's degree from Princeton University and a master's degree in Public Policy from the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University.

James Astill

Energy and environment editor, The Economist
James Astill joined The Economist as international security editor in 2004. He had previously filed dispatches from Afghanistan, Pakistan and many African countries, while also working for the Guardian. In 2007 he moved to Delhi to be the South Asia correspondent, covering the countries of the Indian subcontinent. He has won several awards, including the Gerald Ford prize for his coverage of US security and the Grantham prize for a special report on the world's forests. He has also written special reports on India and on Pakistan. He became energy and environment editor in 2011, and is based in London.

Paulo Barreto

Senior Researcher, Imazon
Paulo Barreto, is a specialist in natural resource use and conservation who focusses on sustainable development in the Brazilian Amazon. He is a senior researcher at IMAZON (Amazon Institute of People and the Environment) where he started his 20-year career. His early work on forestry has advanced the development of timber certification criteria and the institution of the National Forest Program by the Government of Brazil under the Forest Concession Law. From 1998 to 2004 Barreto served as executive director of IMAZON where he developed extensive experience in fund raising and organisation management. Barreto has published about 70 academic and technical publications. He frequently speaks to a wide variety of stakeholders in the private and public sectors and coverage of his research has appeared more than 150 times in major international and national news media. Barreto writes the blog Amazônia Sustentável about challenges and ideas for sustainable development in the Amazon. He holds a MSc in forest sciences from Yale University and a BSc in forest sciences from the Amazon Rural University in Belém, Pará, Brazil.

Richard Black

BBC Environment Correspondent
Richard Black produced and presented science and environment programmes for BBC World Service prior to becoming a news correspondent. He regularly covers major environment conferences such as the UN climate summits in Copenhagen and Cancún and the UN biodiversity summit in Nagoya in 2010, and recently made a radio documentary series on forests, whaling and fisheries. He has led environment news coverage on the BBC News website for six years.

Hans Brattskar

Hans Brattskar is director general at the Royal Norwegian Ministry of Environment and Norway's Special Envoy for International Climate Policy. From 2008 to 2011 he was the first director of the Government of Norway's Climate and Forest Initiative (NICFI). Ambassador Brattskar holds a PhD in international relations from Claremont University and has extensive experience from international relations, environmental and development cooperation. He has previously served as Norway's Ambassador to Sri Lanka, as Special Advisor for Peace Building Operations and as Minister Counselor at the Norwegian Mission to the United Nations in New York.

Sandra Brown

Winrock International, USA
Sandra Brown is chief scientist and director of the Ecosystem Services Unit of Winrock International. Her 30 years of experience include increasing our understanding of tropical forests in the global carbon cycle and conducting feasibility studies for climate change mitigation, including developing methodologies and standards for voluntary forest carbon projects and for REDD+.  Her 200 peer-reviewed publications include serving as co-convening lead author for chapters in five IPCC Reports.

Ben Chikamai

Director of the Kenya Forest Research Institute, General Secretary of the Network for Gum Arabic and Resins in Africa (NGARA)
Ben Chikamai is a Kenyan who has been the director of Kenya's Forestry Research Institute since May 2009. He gained his BSc in forestry from the University of Nairobi, Kenya, in 1983, followed by a MSc in forestry from the University of Toronto, Canada, in 1986. His PhD was earned from the University of Wales, Bangor, UK in 1994. He has extensive working experience in forestry use, forestry and natural resources management, research management and networking in research and development.

He is also the current executive secretary for the Network for Natural Gums and Resins in Africa (NGARA), regional coordinator of the Commonwealth Forestry Association in Africa, and the coordinator for the Association of Forestry Research Institutions in Eastern Africa. He has served as an external examiner for the Department of Wood Utilisation, Sokoine University of Agriculture, Tanzania; Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of Dar-Es Salaam, Tanzania; Kenyatta University, Kenya; and Department of Wood Science and Technology, Moi University, Kenya.
He is author or co-author of more than 60 papers in refereed journals, conference proceedings or book chapters. In 1996 he received the Head of State Commendation Award for his contribution to society in the development of the gum arabic and plant resins subsector in Kenya.  He was also awarded a certificate of merit for innovative scientific research and development from the Kenya Forestry Research Institute in 1990 in recognition of his contribution in the areas of biomass energy and production of laminated items.

Salisu Dahiru

National REDD+ Coordinator, Nigeria
Salisu Dahiru has been one of the key leaders in Nigeria's REDD+ Initiatives, which advances development of the national REDD+ framework and strategy. Dahiru anchored the National Afforestation Programme for Economic and Environmental Sustainability in Nigeria, which is aimed at combating deforestation, desertification and forest degradation, as well as promoting poverty reduction, including the development of linkages with REDD+. Having previously worked as the focal point for the Convention on Biological Diversity, Dahiru initiated efforts to integrate biodiversity and multiple benefits very early in Nigeria's REDD Readiness planning process. He is currently the National Coordinator, REDD+, and Climate Change Negotiator on REDD+.

Joanna Durbin

Climate, Community & Biodiversity Alliance (CCBA)
Joanna Durbin leads the CCBA, a unique partnership of international NGOs with a mission to stimulate the creation of policies and markets to promote land-based carbon activities that simultaneously mitigate global climate change, improve the wellbeing and reduce poverty of local communities and conserve biodiversity. The CCBA brings together diverse stakeholders through a transparent and inclusive participatory process to develop standards that identify and promote high quality multiple-benefit land-based carbon activities. Joanna facilitated the multistakeholder process to Climate, Community & Biodiversity Standards, which have become the leading multiple-benefit standard for land-based carbon projects since their launch in 2005. Since 2009, Joanna has worked with CARE to facilitate development of the REDD+ Social and Environmental Standards to build support for government-led REDD+ programmes that make a significant contribution to human rights, poverty alleviation and biodiversity conservation. Before joining the CCBA in 2007, Joanna directed the Madagascar Program of the Durrell Wildlife Conservation Trust for 10 years, implementing community-based conservation projects and pioneering innovative conservation incentive agreements with communities for biodiversity conservation and sustainable resource management. She has more than 20 years experience developing effective local governance of natural resources for conservation and sustainable development.

Michael Dutschke

Chair, Global Conservation Standard e.V.
Michael Dutschke focuses on the overlap between climate change and development policies. He has been involved in capacity and institution building and project consultancy for climate and development in land use and biomass energy. Michael has been a policy advisor on the design and implementation of flexible compliance mechanisms in international climate policy since 1997, being observer at all relevant meetings of the Climate Convention. He co-authored the Climate, Community and Biodiversity Standard and the IPCC Forth Assessment Report, for which the IPCC received the Nobel Peace Prize in 2007. Since early 2010, he has been leading and coordinating the development of the Global Conservation Standard. Today, the GCS is a charitable NGO which he chairs.

Lorena Falconí

Lorena Falconí is the Climate Change Mitigation Director at the Ministry of Environment of Ecuador. She is a geographic engineer with extensive experience in land use planning and in the application of geographic information systems. Former advisor to the Undersecretary for Climate Change, Lorena has worked in different forest areas in Ecuador analysing patterns of land use change and assessing the impacts of climate change on biodiversity. Early in her career, Lorena was involved in participatory mapping exercises along Ecuador's coastline as well as in indigenous territories of the Ecuadorian Amazon.

Monique Essed-Fernades

Monique Essed Fernandes, of Suriname, is chair of the Board for the Women's Environment and Development Organization. She represents the organisation by speaking on a range of climate change, sustainable development and governance issues.  Fernandes has been active in social development and politics for the past 20 years. She is the founder of the Women's Parliament Forum, an organisation that fosters women's political participation, as well as Projekta, an NGO that focusses on women and development. Fernandes is also the founder of a political party in Suriname and was the first woman to run for president of the country. She recently served as a policy advisor on planning and development cooperation and governance issues in Suriname, the region and worldwide. While continuing her international work, she is presently focusing on educational, environmental and governance priorities in her own country.

Manoel Sobral Filho

Former Executive Director, International Timber Tropical Organization
Manoel Sobral holds a PhD in forestry, wildlife and range sciences, his other qualifications include a MSc in wood utilization and a BSc in chemistry. After a two-year working internship in a Brazilian Forestry Agency, Sobral joined the Forest Products Laboratory of the Brazilian Institute for Forestry Development, in Brasilia, Brazil, in 1975.  In 1981, he began his work in the Amazon region, as director of the Forest Products Research Center of the National Institute for Amazonian Research. In March 1987, he was recruited by the International Tropical Timber Organization, Yokohama, Japan, as assistant director for forest industry.  He was appointed by the International Tropical Timber Council for a 4-year term as executive director of the ITTO in November 1999. In May 2003 his mandate was extended for a second 4-year term, completed in December 2007. Manoel Sobral has written several articles and papers on various aspects of tropical forestry and international co-operation. Representing ITTO, he has also addressed numerous conferences and symposia related to tropical forests development and conservation. He is currently working in Brazil on a number of projects related to deforestation, GHG emissions and biomass-based energy.

Helen Gichohi

President, African Wildlife Foundation
Helen Gichohi has taken command of AWF's programmes with style and determination. Gichohi is responsible for directing the African Heartlands Program in eight massive landscapes throughout central, eastern and southern Africa.  Gichohi works with a wide variety of scientists, community officers, government officials, lawyers, donors and partners to ensure the future for Africa's wildlife. She designs and manages conservation strategies which will reduce threats to wildlife in the Heartlands and improve socio-economic conditions for the people living there. However, achieving this objective is not always straightforward, since threats to wildlife are often the product of a complex interaction of ecological, social, political, economic factors. This work has not gone unnoticed either. During Kenya's 42nd Independence Day celebrations, the President awarded Gichohi the Order of Great Warrior of Kenya Award in recognition of her sterling contribution to conservation.

Jeannette D. Gurung

Executive Director, Women Organizing for Change in Agriculture and Natural Resource Management
Jeannette Gurung is a forester and gender and development expert whose career has focused on leading organisational change for gender equality within agriculture and natural resource management organisations. She is founder and director of Women Organizing for Change in Agriculture and Natural Resource Management. Gurung has a MSc in forestry from the University of Washington, and a PhD in gender and development from the University of East Anglia (UK) with a focus on organisational development and change for gender equality. She has over 20 years of experience in training andcapacity building, action research, gender analysis, organizational analysis, policy advocacy and network building, and has published numerous articles and books. She leads the UN Forum on Forests' major group on Women and, serves on the Steering Committee of The Forest Dialogue.

Juan Carlos Jintach

COICA (Ecuador)

Tina Joemat-Pettersson

Minister of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries
Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries, South Africa

Vincent Kasulu

Vincent Kasulu Seya Makonga is director for sustainable development and the focal point for the UNFCCC in the Ministry of Environment, Conservation of Nature and Tourism of the Democratic Republic of the Congo. He is a leader in the exploration of the concept of REDD+ in COMIFAC and the Congo Basin, in the FCPF and global climate policy, and has helped position DR Congo as a vanguard actor in helping define how the concept of REDD+ could be implemented on the ground in a major tropical country setting.

Jagdish Kishwan

Additional Director General of Forests, Ministry of Environment and Forests, India
Jagdish Kishwan is a member of the Core Negotiating Group of the Government of India, and serves as the country's chief negotiator and expert on forestry issues especially REDD+, in the COP and SBSTA Meetings of UNFCCC. He is a distinguished member of the Indian Forest Service and has held high-ranking posts including director general for the Indian Council of Forestry Research and Education and head of the Forestry Force for  Jammu and Kashmir State. In his current position as additional director general of forests in the Ministry of Environment and Forests, Kishwan oversees the wildlife portfolio in the ministry. He is also ex-officio director for wildlife preservation for the Government of India. Having graduated in Physics Honours from Delhi University, and after completing a post-graduate degree in mathematics, he joined the Jammu and Kashmir cadre of the Indian Forest Service in 1975. On completion of training in the then Indian Forest College, Dehradun, he obtained the Associate of Indian Forest College Diploma, equivalent to a MSc in forestry.

Niels Elers Koch

Director General, Danish Centre for Forest, Landscape and Planning, University of Copenhagen
Niels Elers Koch is director general of Forest and Landscape Denmark at the University of Copenhagen and president of the International Union of Forest Research Organizations. In 2009 he chaired the organising committee for the Copenhagen Climate Change Congress that took place in March 2009 in Denmark, with approximately 2500 participants from 80 countries. In his most recent publications he focuses on forest research management in an era of globalisation and realising the environmental benefits of forests. Koch studied forestry at the Royal Veterinary and Agricultural University of Denmark where he also obtained his PhD in forest policy.

Manfred Konukiewitz

Vice Director General, Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development, Germany

Rachel Kyte

Vice President, Sustainable Development Network
Rachel Kyte is vice president of sustainable development at the World Bank. As such, she has overall responsibilities for the organization's global work in agriculture, the environment, infrastructure, urban development, and social development. She has held the position since September 2011.

Prior to taking up her current post, from 2008 Kyte was vice president for business advisory services at the International Finance Corporation, the private sector–focussed arm of the World Bank Group. Here, she focussed IFC's Advisory Services to deliver more measurable impact for the world's poorest people and in the most challenging environments, including countries affected by conflict. She is leading IFC's efforts to support inclusive business models, including women's businesses. She also spearheaded adoption of the IFC Development Goals, the first set of development goals specific to the private sector.

From 2004, Kyte served as IFC's director for environmental and social development, where she led efforts to develop new sustainability performance standards. Through the Equator Principles, these standards are now a global benchmark for private businesses, illustrating that improved environment and social standards can raise financial performance in developing countries. From 2000 to 2004, she served in the office of IFC's compliance advisor/ombudsman. Prior to joining IFC, she was a member of the management team of the World Conservation Union—IUCN. She has held elected positions in Europe, and founded and led nongovernmental organisations focussing on women, the environment, health, and rights. Ms. Kyte holds a MA in international relations from the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy, and a BA in politics and history from the University of London.

John Liu

Director of the Environmental Education Media Project. 
EEMP uses television to deliver ecological, sustainable development and public health messages in China and other countries. Since the mid-1990s, Liu has concentrated on ecological filmmaking and has written, produced and directed films on grasslands, deserts, wetlands, oceans, rivers, urban development, atmosphere, forests, endangered animals and poverty reduction, primarily for Earth Report and Life series on BBC World. He is currently a senior research fellow at IUCN and works with development agencies, including the World Bank and DFID, and various bodies of the United Nations.

Ludovino Lopes

Ludovino Lopes is a lawyer who specializes in the field of European Community Law. He has  practiced law for the past 20 years in São Paulo, Brazil, and Lisbon, Portugal, in the areas of environmental law, private international law and technology law. Lopes graduated from the Classic University of Lisbon Law School.  He is currently member of three bodies developing REDD+ policies: the Offset Working Group for California, Acre and Chiapas to establish an international multilateral offset mechanism on REDD+; the VCS Advisory Committee on Jurisdictional Nested REDD; and the Working Group of the Brazilian Ministry of Environment to establish a national policy for REDD+ in 2010. As a senior partner of the law firm Ludovino Lopes Lawyers with headquarters in São Paulo and branch offices in Lisbon and Milan, he has advised national governments and several state governments on technical policies and regulations for carbon markets and REDD+. 

Raymond S. Lumbuenamo

Raymond Lumbuenamo holds a PhD in interdisciplinary remote sensing from the University of Arizona and a master's degree in soil and water sciences from the same university. Since 2005, he has been working as the national coordinator of the World Wide Fund for Nature in the DR Congo. He previously worked as mission environmental officer and as a projects manager for rural development and natural resource management, from 2004 to 2005 and from 2001 to 2005, respectively at the United States Agency for International Development in the DR Congo. Lumbuenamo also teaches introductory remote sensing and GIS courses at the University of Kinshasa and the UNESCO Graduate School for Integrated Tropical Forest and Land Management of the same university.

Nur Masripatin

Director of the Centre for Standardization and Environment, Ministry of Forestry of Indonesia
Nur Masripatin is the director of the Centre for Standardization and Environment at the Ministry of Forestry of Indonesia.  Within a few years after obtaining her PhD from Canterbury University, New Zealand, she served in several directorships for eight years  before assuming her current  post: (1) Forest Biotechnology and Tree Improvement Research and Development, 2002–2005; (2) Centre for Plantation Forest Research and Development, 2005–2007; (3) Social Economy and Policy Research, 2009–2010;  and Secretary of FORDA, 2007–2009. She has been dealing with forest and climate change issues since the early 2000s, and has been a REDD+ negotiator since 2005. She is also the Coordinator of ASEAN Regional Knowledge Network on Forest and Climate Change (ARKN-FCC) as well as the Indonesia's focal point for REDD+ Partnership.

Jan McAlpine

Director, United Nations Forum on Forests Secretariat
Jan McAlpine has been Director of the United Nations Forum on Forests Secretariat since November 2008. She has been working on environmental, trade and social issues for over 30 years, with a specific focus on international forest policy matters for the past 15. McAlpine previously served as senior negotiator and advisor for forests for the United States Department of State, and participated in international processes on forests including those of the UN after the Rio Earth Summit in 199; the UN Forum on Forests; the FAO Committee on Forestry; UN Conference on Trade and Development; and the International Tropical Timber Organization.

Charles McNeill

Senior Policy Advisor, UNDP                                                                                                                 
Charles McNeillis senior policy advisor in the Environment and Energy group within UNDP's Bureau for Development Policy as well as a member of UNDP/EEG's Senior Management Team and is responsible for one of the group's four major areas of focus: 'Local Access to Environmental and Energy Services'. He is currently engaged in co-managing UNDP's work on Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation (REDD) with FAO and UNEP as part of the UN-REDD Programme and in overseeing the work of the Equator Initiative, a multipartner effort to foster successful community initiatives in the Equatorial belt to reduce poverty through the conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity. McNeill is also responsible for policy coherence, partnerships and strategic initiatives for UNDP's environment group. He initiated UNDP's work to stimulate new markets for carbon and other ecosystem services to achieve the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) and to expand the benefits of the Clean Development Mechanism to a larger group of developing countries. Previously at UNDP, he managed the Biodiversity Global Programme, coordinated UNDP's role in the implementation of the Convention on Biological Diversity and oversaw work in mainstreaming environmental issues into national development plans around the world to advance the MDGs. From 1992 to 1996, he managed UNDP's Global Environment Facility (GEF) work throughout Africa and then was responsible for UNDP-GEF global policy and programming. Prior to joining UNDP in 1992, McNeill worked in the nongovernmental sector on hunger eradication and sustainable development programmes in South Asia and Africa.  After receiving his PhD in genetics from the University of California at Davis, he  held several academic posts in which he addressed a range of environmental and development issues.

Guy Midgley

Chief Director Climate Change and Bio Adaptation, Global Change Research Group, South African National Biodiversity Institute

Peter A. Minang

ICRAF-ASB Partnership Global Coordinator
Peter A Minang is a senior scientist and global coordinator of the ASB Partnership for the Tropical Forest Margins at the World Agroforestry Centre. He is a geographer with more than 15 years of experience working on climate change (CDM and REDD+), conservation and community forestry. His current research interests are on reducing emissions from all land use (REALU), effective REDD+ at the tropical forest margins and the dynamics of enabling joint planning and implementation of mitigation and adaptation to climate change in Africa. He has served in various advisory roles on climate change for African governments, regional bodies and organisations.

Linda Mossop–Rousseau

Senior Executive. Corporate Services. Komatiland Forests (Pty)
Linda Mossop-Rousseau holds an Honours degree in geography, a Higher Diploma Certificate and a law degree. She is currently senior executive for corporate services at Komatiland Forests, a wholly owned subsidiary of the South African Forestry Company, a state-owned company. In addition she is a member of the Board of Food and Trees for Africa, a South African NGO that focusses on providing food and trees to impoverished areas. She is also a founding member and member of the governing council of the African Forest Forum, an international NGO based in Nairobi, Kenya, with more than 500 voluntary members involved in forestry. She also chairs a sub-committee of the governing council called the Technical Support Team, which trains, advises and provides technical and legal advice to African Negotiators at international forums such as the United Nations Forum on Forests and UNFCCC. She is a core associate of WOCAN, and is currently completing her master's in forestry through the University of Stellenbosch.

Constance Neely

Consultant, Food and Agricultural Organisation (FAO) of the United Nations

Judy Nyaguthii Kimamo

Ms Judy works with the Green Belt Movement, as a Senior Project Officer responsible for capacity building of Women and Girls. She is committed to women and girl livelihood improvement and rights issues, social and economic justice and environmental Justice. She Holds a Bachelor of Science Degree, Natural Sciences and has more than 7 years of experience with the Green Belt Movement in dealing with community based organizations and groups for pro action, self betterment and improvement of livelihoods. She works with community women, youth and school based groups and civic leaders to be the change agents who will bring about the change the communities desire.

Odigha Odigha

Chairman, Cross River State Forestry Commission, Nigeria
Odigha Odigha is the current chair and chief executive officer of the Cross River State Forestry Commission in Nigeria. He coordinates REDD+ in the state and serves as a member of the National Technical Committee on REDD+. Odigha was nurtured by his grandfather to love nature beginning at the age of five. This background inspired him to devote his life to the protection of the last tropical rainforest in Nigeria.  He has taught mathematics at Ahmadu Bello University Zaria. After completing a masters in business administration he went into business and politics briefly. But the quest for rainforest protection encouraged him to form the NGO Coalition for Environment (NGOCE) with other activists.

John Parrotta

IUFRO Task Force Coordinator,  and the US Forest Service
John Parrotta is a senior scientist and international forest science policy analyst with the US Forest Service's research and development branch. His 30 years of research experience has included work in tropical forest ecology, silviculture, forest restoration, and traditional uses of forest biodiversity. From 2005 to 2010 he led IUFRO's Task Force on Traditional Forest Knowledge, which examined the role of local and indigenous peoples' knowledge and practices in sustaining forests, communities, and biocultural diversity, the historical and current relationships between traditional and formal forest science and management, and opportunities for combining knowledge systems to solve critical forest management problems.

Lucio Pedroni

Lucio Pedroni is CEO of Carbon Decisions International, S.A.  He is a forest engineer from Switzerland, with more than 20 years of experience including working in Costa Rica and Madagascar on Swiss ODA projects, as professor at CATIE in Costa Rica, and as methodology consultant for the Carbon Finance Unit at the World Bank. He contributed to development of the VCS and CCB standards, carbon accounting methodologies for afforestation and reforestation projects under the CDM, and REDD+ under the VCS; He has also proposed the nested approach for implementing REDD+ in developing countries.

Rubin Rashidi

DR Congo

Daju Resosudarmo

Daju Resosudarmo is a scientist in the Forests and Governance Programme of the Center for International Forestry Research. She coordinates the Indonesian component of the Global Comparative Study on REDD+, with a research focus on REDD+ policies and demonstration projects.  Her areas of research interest include drivers of deforestation, population and natural resources, decentralisation, multilevel linkages in resource governance, local governments, political economy of natural resources and development, natural resource revenue distribution and use, tenure, land use change and spatial planning, and climate change.  Daju is an Indonesian citizen and has a bachelor's in chemical engineering from Bandung Institute of Technology, a Master's in international development from Cornell University and a PhD in forestry governance from the Australian National University.

Valentina Robiglio

Scientist, International Institute for Tropical Agriculture, Yaoundé, Cameroon

Eduardo Rojas-Briales

Eduardo Rojas-Briales is assistant director general and head of the Forestry Department at the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations and chair of the Collaborative Partnership on Forests. Previously, he was vice-dean of the Faculty of Agronomy of the Polytechnic University of Valencia and chair of the Professional Board of Foresters in the Valencia Region. Rojas-Briales has also served as a university professor, researcher and director of a forest owners association, as well as a consultant in forest policy. He holds a MSc in forestry from University of Freiburg and PhD from Polytechnic University of Madrid.

Carole Saint Laurent

Senior Advisor for Forest Policy and Partnerships, IUCN
Carole Saint-Laurent is IUCN's Senior Advisor for Forest Policy and Partnerships, a position she has held for 14 years.  She is also the coordinator of the Global Partnership on Forest Landscape Restoration (GPFLR).  Saint-Laurnet has 20 years of experience in environmental policy and programme development working at international and national levels for IUCN, WWF and the Canadian Institute for Environmental Law and Policy. She has also acted as an adviser to the UN Department of Environmental and Social Affairs and to the private sector on a range of issues related to sustainable development. She holds a master's of law degree from University College London.

Bob Scholes

Systems ecologist and leader of the ecosystem processes and dynamics research group, CSIR, South Africa
Dr Bob Scholes is a systems ecologist, employed by the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research in South Africa. He has over three decades of research experience on the topics of savanna and woodland ecology, biogeochemistry, global environmental change and biodiversity and is widely published in these fields. He has been involved in several high-profile environmental assessments, including the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (he is a convening lead Author in the current assessment) and the Millennium Ecosystem Assessment, where he co-chaired the Status and Trend working group. He was the co-chair of Diversitas, the international biodiversity research coordinating body, and is chair of the Group on Earth Observation Biodiversity Observation Network (GEO BON). He is a Fellow of the CSIR, the South African Academy and the Royal Society of South Africa, and serves on the editorial board of several journals. 

Kanyinke Sena

Kanyinke Sena is a lawyer and indigenous rights activists from Kenya. He is currently a member of the United Nations Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues and East Africa regional representative for the Indigenous Peoples of Africa Coordinating Committee (www.ipacc.org.za), a network of 150 Indigenous Peoples organisations in 22 countries in Africa.  He also serves as a member of the CCBA/CARE REDD+ Social and Environmental Standards committee.
Kanyinke has been closely following REDD+ since COP 13 and has participated in several sessions of the UN-REDD Policy Board as Africa Civil Society Representative and also as a representative of the UNPFII where he is the environment focal point. He has also served as a Technical Advisory Panellist for the Forest Carbon Partnership Facility (FCPF) where he reviewed Readiness Plans Information Notes for 20 REDD+ countries and Readiness Preparation Proposals for 12 countries. He has participated in the FCPF Participants Committee meetings. From 2009 to 2010 he led the multistakeholder process in the design of RPPs for Kenya and Uganda and the FCPF programme. He is part of Kenya's REDD+ technical working group and has organised indigenous communities REDD+ awareness workshops in five African countries.
Kanyinke has a bachelor's of academic laws and bachelors of law degrees from the University of Mysore, India and is currently pursuing a Master's in law by thesis through the University of Cape Town. His thesis is "Safeguarding Indigenous Peoples rights in REDD+ programs in Africa: challenges and opportunities".

Nikhil Seth

Director of the Division for Sustainable Development, DESA
Previously, Nikhil Seth served as Special Assistant and Chief of Office to the Under-Secretary-General for Economic and Social Affairs at the United Nations, as Secretary of the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) and the Second Committee of the General Assembly, and, most recently, as Director of the Office for ECOSOC Support and Coordination, DESA. Prior to joining the United Nations, Mr. Seth served in the Indian diplomatic service, where his assignments included Geneva, DR Congo, Central African Republic, Gabon and Equatorial Guinea, and the Permanent Mission of India, New York.

Frances Seymour

Director General, CIFOR
Frances Seymour is Director General of the Center for International Forestry Research (CIFOR), an international research organisation with headquarters in Bogor, Indonesia and offices in Asia, Africa and Latin America. At CIFOR, she led the formulation and initial implementation of a new strategy for the organisation focussed on six priority research domains. She is a co-author of the CIFOR report Do Trees Grow on Money? and contributor to Moving Ahead with REDD and Realising REDD+. Prior to CIFOR, Ms Seymour founded and directed the Institutions and Governance Program at the World Resources Institute (WRI) in Washington, DC. At WRI, she guided the launch of The Access Initiative, a global civil society coalition promoting citizen involvement in environment-related decisions. She also co-authored and contributed to WRI publications critically examining the role of public and private international financial institutions in promoting sustainable development. Previously, she served as Director of Development Assistance Policy at the World Wildlife Fund, and spent five years in Indonesia with the Ford Foundation, where her grant-making focussed on community forestry and human rights. Frances holds a master's degree from the Woodrow Wilson School at Princeton University, and a BSc in Zoology from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Itaru Shiraishi

Marubeni Corp. Japan
Itaru Shiraishi has been working in the carbon market since 2006, mainly with CDM credits and EU allowances. He currently works for Marubeni Corporation in Tokyo where he is responsible for a REDD+ project and Kyoto Protocol projects and credits transactions. He previously worked on carbon financing for Masdar in Abu Dhabi, carbon sales trading at Fortis Bank in Amsterdam and provided management support on start-up at a venture capital firm and corporate finance at Morgan Stanley in Tokyo. He holds a bachelor of arts from Washington University in St. Louis in the United States and an MBA from RSM Erasmus University in the Netherlands.

Lindiwe Majele Sibanda

Lindiwe Majele Sibanda has held the position of chief executive officer of the Food, Agriculture and Natural Resource Policy Analysis Network since 2004. She is currently coordinating policy research and advocacy programmes aimed at making Africa a food-secure region. Lindiwe has been in the forefront of global policy analysis in agriculture, climate change and food security. Since 2008, Sibanda has been a leading advocate for the Farming First global campaign, advocating for a holistic approach to sustainable agricultural development. In 2009, Sibanda led the 'No-Agriculture, No-Deal' global campaign and mobilised African civil society organisations to push for the inclusion of agriculture in the UN Climate Change Conference negotiations in Copenhagen. In August 2010, she joined the Guardian Global Development advisory panel. Recently Sibanda was nominated to serve on the independent Science Panel of the CGIAR's Climate Change, Agriculture and Food Security Programme  which is aimed at driving new research and creating unique possibilities in the search for cutting-edge solutions to climate change and food security problems. She also serves on the Boards of two CGIAR centres, CIMMYT and ILRI. Sibanda is an animal scientist by training and a practicing cattle farmer. She received her BSc at the University of Alexandria, Egypt; her MSc and PhD at the University of Reading, UK. She serves on numerous international boards and advisory councils and has published a number of policy materials in international media, journal articles and book chapters.

Anthony Simons

Director General, World Agroforestry Centre
Tony Simons is the World Agroforestry Centre's new director general as of October