Julie is a conservationist and veterinarian with more than 25 years experience in community-based conservation and socio-economic development of local people with a gender-focused approach. After earning her PhD with the Royal Veterinary College, London, Julie was affiliated with the Zoological Society of London (ZSL). The holistic approach to conservation she developed derives from her living in the field with the most remote communities of Africa and made her a pioneer of One Health with local communities even before the approach was named. She recently received the Femme en Or for the Environment award.
Her conservation work started with a groundbreaking programme on wild black rhinoceros fertility in Zimbabwe which contributed to improve the management of this endangered species, associated with the creation of the largest private black rhinoceros sanctuary in Africa with fellow OCT advisors. After discovering one of the last pristine coastal ecosystems left in Africa in northern Mozambique with her partner C. Cox, they built one of the most-successful community-managed protected areas in Eastern Africa from scratch. The community-led conservation of this exceptional coastal area remains highly effective today because it started with the re-establishment of local Kimwani people’s stewardship over their natural resources. It also combined local people’s traditional knowledge with the latest scientific knowledge and broke the poverty cycles that entangled them, by improving women’s livelihood, health, and education. Julie is committed to conserve the most threatened ecosystems of the planet by re-empowering local and indigenous women as conservationists in their role as custodians of nature.
She is now a member of the European Network for the Evaluation of One Health (NEOH) as well as an expert for the Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform for Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES). She recently received the Femme En Or for the Environment award.