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Country Director, Congo (Republic of)
Richard started working for WCS Congo in 1995 as a volunteer research assistant. He helped with the study of the ecology of Bongo antelope in Nouabalé-Ndoki National Park. He was part of the team which initiated the Partnership between WCS, a forestry company (CIB) and the Government of Congo to extend conservation actions to the periphery of the Park. Richard completed his MSc in Conservation Biology at the University of Minnesota and a BSc in Tropical Forest Management at the Marien Ngouabi University. Richard was appointed Director of the Plateau Bateke Landscape Project, then Director of Nouabalé-Ndoki National Park. Since 2019, Richard is the WCS Congo Country Director.
Regional Advisor and Conservation Scientist
Emma has over 15 years experience of conservation science and management in tropical forests, with a focus on large mammal ecology and population status. She has conducted fieldwork on apes in Indonesia, Uganda and Republic of Congo, and coordinated landscape-scale implementation of conservation assessment and wildlife monitoring programs for apes and elephants in Northern Congo and for tigers across South-East Asia. She played an instrumental role in the first regional conservation action plan for chimpanzees and gorillas in West Equatorial Africa in 2005 and documented new ape populations in Northern Congo in 2006 that revised the global estimate for western lowland gorillas. Her skills include scientific design and application of management-focused biodiversity monitoring programs and strategic evaluation of conservation outcomes, with a focus on law enforcement effectiveness. She holds a degree in Natural Sciences from Cambridge University and a PhD in cognitive ecology from the University of St Andrews. She has worked for the Wildlife Conservation Society since 1999. Emma is currently based in Gabon as a regional advisor on conservation effectiveness for WCS programs in Africa, and on law enforcement monitoring for WCS globally.
Patrick first joined Conservation world in 1999 as a research assistant for the WCS Ndoki Elephant Project upon his graduation with an Engineer Diploma in Forestry from the University of Brazzaville. Studying forest elephant and great apes in Northern Congo helped Patrick develop his understanding of the Congo’s rich-biodiversity, wildlife-habitats relationships, and his skills as well as built his interest in pursuing a conservation career. He graduated with a Masters in Conservation Biology from the University of Cape Town, South Africa in 2007. As WCS Congo GIS, Ecological and Law Enforcement Monitoring and data management Technical Assistant Between 2007 and 2008, Patrick worked with experts from the US Forest Service and representatives from the CNIAF (Centre National des Inventaires et Aménagements Forestiers du Congo) to develop a country-wide Geodatabase and Access data base for line transect surveys. Since August 2012, Patrick has started his PhD in Wildlife, Fish and Conservation Biology at the University of Massachusetts Amherst, USA. Patrick’s PhD research is focused on elephant conservation and sustainable fisheries in Northern Congo and the Sangha Tri-National landscape
Wildlife Statistician / Conservation Scientist
Samantha Strindberg is a Wildlife Statistician and Conservation Scientist who joined the Global Conservation Program of the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS) in 2001. She provides statistical design and analysis assistance to WCS colleagues around the world. She focuses in particular on the appropriate application of continually evolving specialized techniques for wildlife surveys, and on conducting statistical analyses to investigate ecological and human-influenced relationships relevant to conservation management and policy.

Samantha also contributes to strategic conservation planning by developing conceptual models and theories of change, and by designing monitoring programs to assess the effectiveness of conservation activities. She provides training workshops on wildlife survey methods and the design of monitoring programs most recently in conjunction with the SMART Ecological Records software. She develops analytical and decision-support software applications as part of her work, such as the Landscape Species Selection software used in the selection of conservation targets. She is a member of the Committee of Scientific Advisors on Marine Mammals with the Marine Mammal Commission. Occasionally, she has the pleasure of participating in field work, most often in cetacean or other marine surveys.

Asian Elephant Coordinator & Ivory Trade Policy Analyst
Simon is WCS's Asian Elephant Coordinator & Ivory Trade Policy Analyst. He has almost 25 years of experience of wildlife conservation-related research and survey work, endangered species and protected area management, and wildlife policy formulation, including the writing and implementation of wildlife action plans. The majority of his time since 1988 has been spent in Southeast Asia. Since 1998, Simon has focused on Asian Elephants, particularly on survey method development and human–elephant conflict assessment and mitigation. He began working for WCS in January 2000: co-managing the Sumatran Elephant Project for the WCS Indonesia Program for three years until he was hired by WCS’s region-wide Asia Program in 2003 as the Asian Elephant Coordinator (the position he still hold). As part of his job, he oversees (as the main technical advisor) WCS’s Asian Elephant projects in Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, and Thailand. He chaired the IUCN/SSC Asian Wild Cattle Specialist Group from 1995 to 2005, has been the Co-Chair of the IUCN/SSC Asian Elephant Specialist Group since 2005, and he is a member of the Canid Specialist Group. He was a member of the IUCN/SSC Species Conservation Planning Task Force and he is a member of IUCN Red List Technical Working Group and the CITES Monitoring the Illegal Killing of Elephants (MIKE) program’s Technical Advisory Group (TAG). He has published in journals ranging from Molecular Ecology, Conservation Biology, and Journal of Animal Ecology to Tropical Biodiversity, Kukila, and Gajah. He has also contributed chapters to several peer-reviewed books and edited (and contributed to) the book, Monitoring elephants and assessing threats: a manual for researchers, managers and conservationists (published in 2012).

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