Board of Directors

GPS’s Board of Directors is comprised of committed conservationists and environmental activists.

 

Marnie Gaede, President
Marnie Gaede is a writer, editor, and publisher of numerous books and articles. She has taught Environmental Issues at Art Center College of Design in Pasadena, California since 1993. She served as Advisor to the Director Board of Duke University Primate Center in the late1990s. Marnie has been involved with Sea Shepherd Conservation Society since 1989 and worked in support of numerous campaigns and publications. She served as a director of Sea Shepherd Conservation Society from 2000-2002 and between 2012- 2014 when she was President of the board.  Since 2002 Marnie has been on the board and is currently President of the Fund for Wild Nature.

Marnie fell in love with the Galapagos on her first trip to the islands in 1973, when there was just one tour boat.  She returned over 25 years later and was stunned by the impacts of human development and introduced species.

 

Jim Moss, Esq.
Jim Moss is an attorney and the Editor of the Outdoor Recreation and Fitness Law Review. The Outdoor Recreation and Fitness Law Review is an online legal resource for the outdoor recreation and fitness industry. He is also the editor of the Recreation Law Blog. Jim Moss is an instructor for Colorado Mountain College. He teaches the Risk Management course for the Ski Area Operations and Business Law. Mr. Moss has worked in the environmental law fiend since 1987. He has defended more than 100 environmental activists. He still works as a river guide in the Grand Canyon and his birding life list is just over 400. Mr. Moss is the author or co-author of six books: The Lawyer’s Advisor, Outdoor Recreation, Travel, and Hospitality Forms, Outdoor Recreation Insurance and Law, and co-author of Legal Liability and Risk Management in Adventure Tourism. He is contributing author of the Boy Scouts Fieldbook. He also has a new textbook coming out this year Outdoor Recreation Risk Management, Insurance and Law.

 

smallJono More

Jono is a conservation biologist and artist from the South Island of New Zealand.   In 2005, Jono got a BSc in Ecology and ever since has been seasonally monitoring various endangered and threatened wildlife species for the Department of Conservation.   Specialising in bat research, Jono’s career takes him into some of New Zealand’s greatest wilderness areas working on these remarkable species which are fighting for survival amongst the multitude of introduced mammals which are plaguing the country.

In recent years, Jono’s work has lead him to the Galapagos Islands where he has been involved in numerous different wildlife conservation projects such as monitoring land iguana, mocking birds and albatross, catching hawks during a island rat eradication and most recently, climbing trees to get eggs of the critically endangered mangrove finch so they can be captivity reared.  These experiences have meant that the Galapagos Islands are now very close to Jono’s heart and he has a strong desire to return and help with the many issues of which the Galapagos’ ecosystem faces. New Zealand and the Galapagos both share similar dilemmas in regards to mammalian invaders and therefore Jono believes that his knowledge and experience can be put to good use in helping to save the unique wildlife of the “enchanted islands”.

f-cunninghameFrancesca Cunninghame

Born and brought up in southern New Zealand Francesca has had an enthusiasm for nature conservation from a young age. Volunteering, studying and working with a range of endangered birds in New Zealand and overseas Francesca has turned her love of the natural world into her life’s work.

Francesca lived permanently in the Galapagos for seven years leading the Mangrove Finch Project with the Charles Darwin Foundation, working to conserve the rarest bird in the archipelago. Mangrove finches, one of the most range restricted birds in the world, are still threated by introduced species and with fewer than 20 breeding pairs remaining the birds are in need of active conservation management. Francesca worked with collaborators to intiate head-starting (collection of eggs/young nestlings in the wild, artificial incubation and hand rearing followed by release of juveniles back into the wild) in an attept to increase juvenile survival. The technique met with success to date 36 mangrove finch fledglings have been released back into the wild. Sightings of some of these young birds during 2016 demonstrates that hand-reared mangrove finches are capable of surviving in the wild and it is hoped that in the next few years hand-reared individuals will form part of the breeding population.

Francesca moved back to New Zealand in 2016 where she is currently working part time planning for the next season of mangrove finch head-starting as well as having a part time job with Forest and Bird, New Zealand’s oldest conservation NGO, where she is working to re-establish breeding colonies of seabirds which historically nested on the mainland.

Francesca is honoured and excited to be part of Galapagos Preservation Society and after having worked first hand to try and preserve one Galapagos endemic species, she has a lifelong commitment to the conservation of the islands and the species which live there.

rachel-photoRachel Atkinson

When she was 10 years old Rachel declared to her family that she wanted work in conservation. Since earning her PhD she has spent the last 16 years doing just that, mostly on islands and often with the problems of managing invasive species. She spent four years living and working in Galapagos working on invasive plant control and restoration, as well as promoting native plants for gardens, four years in Mauritius and four years as a consultant based in the desert in the north of Chile.

More recently she has been working as a biodiversity expert in the Inter-American Development Bank, helping to determine the risks of Bank-funded projects to biodiversity throughout Latin America and the Caribbean, and ensuring that these risks are mitigated to limit uneccessary damage.

Rachel is very passionate about the need to find pragmatic solutions for conservation problems that will work in the long term. She still continues to be involved in Galapagos, working in a volunteer capacity to coordinate between government agencies and scientists in a project to help identify a biological control agent for the Himalayan blackberry, one of the worst invasives affecting the islands.

 

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Jorge L. Renteria

Jorge L. Renteria is an ecologist with over eight years of experience specializing in the management of invasive plant species and habitat restoration. Jorge obtained his BSc in Forestry from the Universidad Nacional de Loja in Ecuador and completed his PhD at the Imperial College of London, researching optimal management of the invasive raspberry and habitat restoration in the Galapagos Islands. Jorge spent a further five years on the Galapagos Islands working for the Charles Darwin Foundation doing research on various aspects of invasive species control, prevention and eradication. Following this, he was an Invasive Species Project Co-ordinator for the Seychelles Island Foundation in Praslin, Seychelles, where his work included developing and implementing a strategy to limit the spread and reduce the impact of invasive alien species at The Vallée de Mai forest, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Currently, Jorge is working as a post-doctoral researcher with the chair of Land Use Planning and Management at the University of KwaZululu-Natal in collaboration with the South African National Biodiversity Institute, South Africa. His research will aid in determining whether the prevalence of certain invasive plants could become problematic and in what areas and subsequently how biodiversity laws and economic realities could be affected by their spread.