What is a CMS Ambassador?

CMS Ambassadors are eminent personalities well known and respected in the conservation or media worlds for their work relating to environmental management and the conservation of threatened migratory animals. They are selected by the Executive Secretary of the Convention on Migratory Species (CMS) on the basis of their outstanding achievements in the field, and asked to accept the CMS Ambassadorship, both in recognition of their accomplishments and as a commitment to promote the cause of the CMS and its agreements, namely the conservation of migratory species and their habitats.

Ambassadors help generate public awareness and understanding of environmental causes, as well as inspire broad, positive, committed action in support of UNEP's mandate and priorities. CMS Ambassadors will promote the conservation of migratory species through their work using their existing and other networks, thus contributing to the enhancement of knowledge of the public and decision makers worldwide about the animals and the threats they face.


Kuki Gallman

Kuki Gallman. Photo: F. Keil

Kenya national, author, poet, conservationist and founder of The Gallmann Memorial Foundation(GMF)/GallmannAfrica Conservancy, of the Laikipia Nature Conservancy of the Great Rift Valley Trust and of the Laikipia Highlands Games (Sports for Peace)

Kuki Gallmann settled 42 years ago in Ol ari Nyiro in Laikipia, a 100.000 acres estate on the edge of the Great Rift Valley which at the time was a cattle ranch with 10.000 of livestock.

After the tragic loss within three years of both her husband (killed in a car accident when she was pregnant with their unborn daughter) and her 17-year old son, who died in her arms from the fatal bite of a puff adder (Emanuele loved and studied snakes), her family's deep love for Africa and desire to protect it was transformed into a burning resolve to save its wilderness, wildlife and culture, through which she found her life's purpose, becoming an environmental activist, writer and spokesperson for Africa's environment.

In the aftermath of her tragedies, Gallmann dedicated herself to keeping Ol ari Nyiro and its dream alive. She trained herself in land management and conservation strategies, and raised her daughter, Sveva, to understand and respect traditional African culture and nature and the importance of service to the community.

As a living memorial to her husband and son, she established The Gallmann Memorial Foundation with the specific purpose to harmonise development and conservation. The Foundation aims to prove that Africa can survive out of the ecological, creative and sustainable use of its natural resources. She sold the cattle and transformed Ol ari Nyiro into a Nature conservancy.



Stanley Johnson

Stanley Johnson in the Niger Desert. Photo: R. Beudels

Stanley Patrick Johnson was born in Cornwall in August 1940, and educated Sherborne School, Dorset and Exeter College, Oxford, where he won a Stapeldon Scholarship in Classics. On leaving Oxford in 1963, Stanley was awarded a Harkness Fellowship to the United States. He was the first environment officer ever to be appointed in the Conservative Research Department (1969-70). He is a former Conservative Member of the European Parliament (MEP) where he served (1979-1984) as Vice Chairman of the Parliament's Committee on Environment, Public Health and Consumer Protection. He has also worked in the European Commission (1973-1979) as Head of the Prevention of Pollution Division and (1984-1994) as Senior Adviser to DG Environment and as Director of Energy Policy. Before joining the Commission, Mr Johnson served on the staff of the World Bank and the International Planned Parenthood Federation. Mr Johnson has been an adviser to Price Waterhouse Coopers, a director of ERM, an environmental consultancy, a trustee of the Earthwatch Institute and of Plantlife International, as well as being an environmental adviser to Jupiter Asset Management.

He has had many books published dealing with environmental issues, including the Politics of the Environment, World Population and the United Nations, the Earth Summit and the Environmental Policy of the European Communities, as well as "Survival: Saving Endangered Migratory Species" (2010)and "Where the Wild Things Were" (2012). He has also had nine novels published, including The Commissioner, which was made into a film starring John Hurt. In 1984 he was awarded the Greenpeace Prize for Outstanding Services to the Environment and in the same year the RSPCA Richard Martin award for services to animal welfare.

In 1962 he won the Newdigate Prize for Poetry. He stood unsuccessfully for Parliament in the UK in the May 2005 General Election. Mr Johnson has four children by his first marriage to the painter Charlotte Johnson-Wahl, including Boris, the Mayor of London. He also has two children, Julia and Maximilian, by his second marriage to Jennifer.

 Read more at http://www.stanleyjohnson.com/biog/


Ian Redmond, OBE

Ian Redmond in eastern DRC. Courtesy of M. O’Donnell, Channel 7

Ian Redmond is a tropical field biologist and conservationist, renowned for his work with great apes and elephants. For more than 35 years he has been associated with Mountain Gorillas, through research, filming, tourism and conservation work.  He has served as Ambassador for the UN Year of the Gorilla in 2009 and for the UNEP Convention on Migratory Species since 2010.

As with his mentor, the late Dr Dian Fossey, the main focus of his work shifted in 1978 from research to conservation work, after poachers killed Digit – a young silverback in one of the Karisoke study groups – to sell his skull and hands. Finding the headless, handless body of a gorilla he regarded as a friend was a turning point in his life.  Ten years later in Kenya, the shock was repeated when some of the cave-elephants he was studying were killed by ivory poachers.

As a result, Ian became a conservation consultant and advisor for organisations such as the Born Free Foundation, the Gorilla Organization (for which he became Chairman of the Board of Trustees in 2012), the Orangutan Foundation, International Fund for Animal Welfare, etc.   To encourage such groups to work together, he established and chairs the Ape Alliance (95 organisations linked via www.4apes.com), the African Ele-Fund and the UK Rhino Group.  


Peter Johan Schei

Peter J. Schei

Born in Norway in 1945, Peter J. Schei grew up on a farm.  From early childhood he was interested in nature and often went out in the woods with his father.  He started serious birdwatching and bird study first at the age of 19, when he began reading biology at the University of Oslo. He also studied botany, mathematics, chemistry and biochemistry and graduated in 1971 with Cand. real. Zoology (between Master of Science and PhD) where his thesis was on migration and population dynamics of the European starling.

In 1973, Peter joined Norway’s newly established Ministry of the Environment, the first in the world, as a scientific consultant and continued his career within the Ministry, taking various positions, including Head of Division. From 1985 he joined the Directorate of Nature Management, where he became Director General in 1989. From 1995 he held a position as International Negotiations Director, mostly working for the Ministry of Environment.

Starting in 1979 Peter was appointed Head of the Norwegian delegation to many Conventions such as CITES, Bern, and Ramsar and from 1989 he was heading the Norwegian negotiations on CBD and the “Biosafety-protocol”. He has since been closely involved with the Convention on Biological Diversity, as chair of SBSTTA, its advisory scientific committee, and he is considered as one of its “founding fathers”.