Jan Vertefeuille

Senior Director, Advocacy and Wildlife Conservation, World Wildlife Fund

Since joining World Wildlife Fund (WWF) in 2002, Jan has looked for ways to engage the public, change government and corporate policies, and connect our work directly to the people who live on the frontlines of conservation. She led some of our most successful advocacy campaigns to date, including one that got leaders from all 13 countries with wild tigers to commit to collectively doubling the number of tigers. Jan was also an architect of WWF’s recent campaign to elevate the global response to wildlife trafficking and work with powerful champions to effect change, from Leonardo DiCaprio to revered faith leaders. “WWF is a recognized leader in field work, species protection, and conservation science. My job is to marry the great work of WWF in the field with effective advocacy approaches that reach the people whose support we need,” Jan says. “Sometimes that’s government officials whose policies need strengthening, sometimes it’s corporations who need to improve their practices. Often it’s ordinary people, be it Americans who buy illegal wildlife products or Sumatrans living in elephant habitat that needs protecting.” She currently is working on new approaches to reduce consumer demand for products that drive wildlife crime, such as ivory and rhino horn. And she is working closely with partners across the globe to save one of the last large swaths of rain forest in Sumatra, Thirty Hills, a project that is breaking new ground by involving shared management of the forest with indigenous communities.