Carlos Saavedra

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Member Supervisory Council

Supervisory Council

“I am drawn to Wetlands International ‘s mission and programmes for their holistic vision of wetlands as a continuum: From the upstream sources of freshwater all the way to the oceans. Wetlands are globally important ecosystems found at most latitudes and altitudes that are being polluted, drained, and encroached by cities and shortsighted development. I look forward to working with my fellow Council members and the organisation’s leadership to advance funds mobilisation, effective local community engagement and to foster stewardship from environmentally responsible businesses, cities, and governments toward a healthy planet.”

A former field biologist with experience in the ecology of South American rainforests and tropical savannas, over the past two decades Carlos led The Summit Foundation’s biodiversity conservation grantmaking programme, where he spearheaded the expansion of no-take areas, and the promotion of sustainable fisheries, sustainable tourism and sustainable agriculture in northern Central America and Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula following a whole watershed approach: from ridges to reefs, with a special emphasis on local community engagement and governance reform.

Previously, Carlos led the Mott Foundation’s grantmaking in pollution prevention along the Mexico-US border, as well as efforts to green multi-lateral bank investments. Earlier in his career, Carlos worked at WWF-US, where he launched the Tropical Andes Initiative, spanning five countries from the snowcaps to the Amazon lowlands, which later became national programmes with field-based operations that continue today.

Carlos currently serves on the National Geographic’s Reviewer Circle and works as an independent consultant. Before becoming a grantmaking strategist, Carlos was a tropical ecology and primate researcher, with field experience in several South American countries, including his native Peru. He holds a Master of Science degree in Zoology from the University of Florida.