Global Council of Advisers

Landscapes / Regions

Virginia Young

Director of the International Forests and Climate Program, ARCS


Virginia is currently Director of the International Forests and Climate Program for the Australian Rainforest Conservation Society (ARCS), contributing to the international policy component of a global research program on primary forests lead by Griffith University in Australia. Building understanding about the linkages between the Climate and Biodiversity Crises and the urgent need to tackle both crises together is a feature of her work.

She is Chair of Gondwanalink Ltd, and a member of the Board of the Great Eastern Ranges Initiative - organisations that provide leadership for two of the world’s foremost ecological connectivity protection and restoration initiatives - in the south of Western Australia and along the eastern seaboard of Australia, respectively. Read More

Peter Curry

Specialist, Australian rangeland and grazing ecology


Peter Curry has worked in the semi-arid and tropical rangelands of Western Australia, West Africa, southern Africa and northern China. His expertise ranges from regenerative agriculture, land use planning and landscape ecology, ornithology and he has served in long-term Team Leader or expert positions in projects for AusAID, The World Bank and Britain’s Overseas Development program. He is the author of several key documents on the pastoral lands and species of Western Australia and has served as a specialist in state planning and heritage decision reviews. Read More

Economics Program

Neil MacLeod

Wilderness Economics, Restoration Agriculture & Pastoralism


Neil is presently the Principal of Karingal Systems, a private consultancy service that is focussed on farming systems research projects covering the grazing lands of northern Australia and smallholder farming systems in Africa and Asia.For over 25 years Neil was a Principal Research Scientist with the CSIRO acting both as a researcher and project leader for many multidisciplinary R,D & E projects covering animal production and grazing management, farm business economics, investment analysis, natural resource valuation, conservation biology and landscape ecology. He has also worked with projects aimed at improving the productivity of smallholder farming systems in South Africa, Zimbabwe, India and Indonesia. He was formerly an Associate Editor for Tropical Grasslands and the Rangeland Journal.

Wildlife & Evolution Program

Charles 'Chip' Barber

Senior Global Biodiversity Adviser, World Resources Institute


Charles “Chip” Barber is a global leader in the protection of the Earth’s remaining intact forests, and in social safeguard policies. He served as Forest Chief in the U.S. Department of State Bureau of Oceans and International Environmental and Scientific Affairs. He led U.S. diplomacy on forest policy, working with numerous governments and intergovernmental agencies and processes. Chip was instrumental in developing debt-for-nature swap deals worth over $100 million for Brazil, Costa Rica, Indonesia, and the Philippines. In 2013, Chip negotiated a U.S.-Indonesia MOU on Wildlife Conservation and Combating Wildlife Trafficking, which was signed by Secretary of State John Kerry and the Indonesian Minister of Forestry in February 2014. In 2012, Chip chaired the Asia Forest Partnership, and since 2013-2015 supervised the U.S. term as chair of the Congo Basin Forest Partnership. Read More


OUR STORYTELLERS

Geoff Spanner

Film & Documentary Maker


Geoff Spanner is a film-maker with a particular interest in the desert wilderness of Central Australia, where some of the planet’s last remaining truly wild river systems exist. He is fascinated by the story of these landscapes, a story that stretches far back into a distant time. But Geoff has also developed deep respect for the rich and unique cultures of the Australian deserts, and the communities and the individuals who live in this wilderness, one of the harshest and most remote landscapes on Earth. His storytelling captures a snapshot of the remarkable beauty that still exists in Central Australia, and his films support the push for a wilderness reserve in the Australian deserts. Geoff's is a strong supporter of Forever Wild and is using his latest film to promote the urgent need to protect Australia's central deserts.

Tobias Baumgaertner

Film & Documentary Maker


Tobias Baumgaertner is a German-based videographer who maintains a deep interest in the natural world, the idea of wilderness and the human societies that still survive in the Earth’s wild places. Tobias has produced some outstanding images and video for Forever Wild, including for our first reserve. He works to capture the incredible scale of the planet’s remaining wildernesses, from the miniscule beauty of tiny flowers and invertebrates all the way to the spectacular star-scapes that still convey the camp-fire stories of many human societies. Tobias has worked with Australia’s Indigenous peoples and has spent long weeks in remote areas of Outback Australia. He has traveled extensively worldwide.


OUR COMMUNITY WELLBEING WORKING GROUPS

Cape York SER: Community Wellbeing Working Group
Rob Larkin

Key interests: Social Justice & Development

Read More
Chris Gillies

Key interests: Astronomy & community education

Read More
Dr. Merrilee Frankish

Key interests: Social Determinants of Health & Wellbeing

Read More
Rhonda Dooley

Key interests: Local Indigenous Health & Wellbeing

Read More