Investing in Potential
African Wildlife Foundation has always been an organization about people. Empowering people is at the heart of our mission statement, and this philosophy extends to the relationship we have with our employees. We value dedication and initiative, and actively look for opportunities to nurture potential within our team. This is why AWF is filled with success stories—such as a one-time research intern who now manages all of AWF’s conservation work in the region in which he grew up, or a young Peace Corps volunteer who worked his way up to eventually become AWF’s chief executive officer (CEO). The staff listed below provide just a few examples of the careers in African conservation that AWF offers.
CEO, Nairobi, Kenya
Kaddu has over 20 years’ experience in conservation at grassroots, national, and regional levels in the USA, Africa, and Europe. He has worked with Oxfam UK, the World Conservation Union - IUCN, USA Peace Corps, Conservation International, and Solimar International. As African Wildlife Foundation’s CEO, Kaddu rallies the continent’s elite to lead the fight against the destruction of valuable habitats and wildlife. He believes that it is time for African voices and networks to re-imagine the conservation narrative. Kaddu has a Bachelor’s degree in Social Sciences, as well as an M.A. in Law, Policy & Diplomacy from The Fletcher School, Tufts University and an M.S. in Sustainable Resource Management & Policy from Wye College, Imperial College London.
Richard E. Holly
CFO, Washington, D.C., USA
For over 25 years, Richard has been helping companies improve bottom lines results by identifying opportunities for operational and financial improvement and implementing solutions that create value. Successes include turning around two public charities, a professional association, and a privately held communications firm. As CFO, Richard is responsible for overseeing the Finance and Administrative Functions including Information Technology, Human Resources, Facilities and Administration. Prior to African Wildlife Foundation, Richard served in a variety of financial leadership roles in not-for-profit and for-profit companies in the healthcare, education, professional services, manufacturing, and basic materials industries. Richard holds an International M.B.A. from the Moore School of Business at the University of South Carolina and a B.S. in International Public Affairs from Oklahoma State University. He is a licensed CPA in the state of Virginia, and he has also earned the right to use the CFA® charter designation. Holly is a fluent French speaker, having worked in France for 10 years and is an active member of the French American Chamber of Commerce.
Senior Vice President, Washington, D.C., USA
Craig's experiences with wildlife and conservation began in 1973 as a Peace Corps volunteer in Zaire. As an L.S.B. Leakey grant researcher in the late 1970s, Craig studied mountain gorillas with Dian Fossey and, in 1987, became director of Rwanda's Mountain Gorilla Project, of which African Wildlife Foundation was a sponsor. Craig has acted as Scientific Advisor for the award-winning IMAX film, "Mountain Gorilla," and with National Geographic, he surveyed the conservation status of mountain gorillas in the aftermath of Rwanda's civil war. Craig’s direct involvement with AWF began as a Senior Associate and member of AWF’s Board of Trustees. He became a full-time employee of AWF in 2001 and now serves as Senior Vice President.
Vice President, Strategy, Knowledge Management and Impact, Nairobi, Kenya
Charly began his career as a researcher focused on the economics of forest resources. Driven by his desire to “build the bridge between conservation and development” for local communities, he joined AWF in 2009 as Senior Program Officer for the Congo landscape. Known for his high standards and a knack for motivating teams in difficult circumstances, Charly took on the role of Vice President for Conservation Projects in 2015. He spends 40 percent of his time in the field to understand the challenges on the ground. Charly holds an M.S. in international management and external trade from the École Supérieure des Sciences Economiques et Commerciales in Douala, Cameroon.
Vice President, International Policy and Government Relations, Washington D.C., USA
Eric leads a globally dispersed team at African Wildlife Foundation that engages governments and multilateral institutions in Africa, North America, Europe, and Asia. This team collaborates across the organization to drive policy and financing decisions that integrate wildlife and wild lands into development agendas in Africa and design new programs that deliver benefits for people and wildlife in priority landscapes. Eric started his conservation work in the backcountry of U.S. national parks and later western Uganda. Over the past 20 years, he has played key roles in program design addressing a diverse set of conservation strategies, and engaged institutional partners with the Environmental Law Institute, Earth Day Network, Conservation International, Rare, and African Wildlife Foundation. He has worked across Africa for more than two decades, but has also worked in Southeast Asia and with island states. Eric volunteers for and has served on the steering committees of the Global Island Partnership and the Africa Biodiversity Collaborative Group.
Vice President, Species Conservation and Science, Nairobi, Kenya
Philip, who has worked with African Wildlife Foundation for more than 20 years, faces conservation challenges from a broad perspective. His role is to deliver strong and appropriate conservation science inputs to AWF's integrated conservation strategies that take into account landscape-level approaches, social issues, and economic issues. He is responsible for issues as varied as the kind of endangerment classification a species should receive, or how resources should be allocated and oversees AWF's species program. In addition, Philip represents AWF in the international conservation dialogue, such as at the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES) and the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) World Conservation Congress. He is also a member of the Task Force on Kenya’s Migratory Corridors and Dispersal Areas as well as Kenya's National Giraffe Conservation Task Force. Philip’s educational qualifications are extensive, including both an M.S. and Ph.D. in ecology and evolutionary biology from Princeton University, and numerous publications.
Senior Director, Project Management & Partnerships, Nairobi, Kenya
With over 20 years of experience in wildlife research and conservation management working with African governments, protected area authorities, and local communities, Alistair provides ongoing oversight for the breadth of AWF’s projects across the continent. He also oversees the organization’s Classroom Africa program, which delivers conservation through education. Alistair obtained a Ph.D. from the University of Aberdeen, focusing on African wild dogs in Zimbabwe's Gonarezhou National Park and Save Valley Conservancy, where he later initiated a successful African wild dog conservation program. After completing his Ph.D., Alistair served as the Managing Director of Chishakwe Ranch in Save Valley Conservancy, of which he was a member of the executive committee for 10 years. He joined AWF in 2014, overseeing the management of Simien Mountains National Park in Ethiopia and Manyara Ranch Conservancy in Tanzania.
Kirstin has over 25 years of experience in international development and conservation. Passionate about primates and wildlife conservation, she started out as an anthropologist, conducting M.S. research on the interface between communities and wildlife in the Budongo Forest in Uganda, and later Ph.D. research in the Tsavo region of Kenya. For the last 15 years, Kirstin has also supported the well-known Maasai-owned and run Il Ngwesi ecotourism programme in Kenya in a strategic and advisory capacity, serving on the Board of Directors. Kirstin joined African Wildlife Foundation in 2017 and is leading the expansion of AWF in the U.K., focusing on building our network of donors, supporters and growing our profile and influence.
Senior Program Design Officer, Nairobi, Kenya
Indekhwa has more than nine years’ cumulative experience in audit and assurance, financial management, program design, and management. She has worked with a wide array of both corporate and public donors, beginning her career in audit and assurance with PKF Kenya before moving to international development where she worked with MERLIN, Save the Children International, and The Norwegian Refugee Council. Indekhwa joined African Wildlife Foundation in May 2018 and is tasked with the responsibility of leading all the financial components of the program design team and ensuring compliance with agreements between AWF and public donors. She is a continuing A.C.C.A., holds an accounting degree with Information Technology from Maseno University as well as an M.B.A. in International Business Management from the University of Nairobi.