Staff

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Alexine Keuroghlian
Coordinator of WCS Pantanal/Cerrado project
Alexine has a Ph.D. from the Ecology, Evolution, and Conservation Biology program at the University of Nevada, a Master’s in Wildlife Management from West Virginia University, and a BA in Zoology from Drew University. Coordinator since 2005 of the WCS Pantanal/Cerrado Project, “Conserving Wildlife and Rural Livelihoods Using Sustainable Land-use Tools – Brazil’s Pantanal/Cerrado”. Alexine was recently awarded the Harry Messel Award for Conservation Leadership given by IUCN/SSC (Species Survival Commission).
Ana V Garrido
Program Manager
Ana has a bachelor´s degree in Biology from the Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro (UFRJ), completed her master´s degree in 2008 in Applied Ecology by the Universitat de Barcelona (UB) and completed a graduate specialization in Management Systems in 2009. She has worked as a researcher with the UFRJ Limnology Laboratories and in Scientific Projects Management at the UB Agencia de Politiques i de Qualitat. Ana started with WCS Brazil in 2011, and today is responsible for the Institutional Development of the Brazil Program.
Andre Antunes
Terrestrial Monitoring
Andre Antunes is a wildlife ecologist, interested in linking research and outreach as way to improve the effectiveness conservation practices in Amazonia. His efforts are devoted to supporting conservation planning and implementation at the landscape by combining scientific tools and traditional knowledge. He completed his PhD in Ecology at the National Institute for Amazonian Research (Manaus, Amazonas, Brazil) and The University of Auckland (Auckland, New Zealand) in 2015, for which he investigated the impacts of the 20th Century international fur and skin trade on Amazonian wildlife populations. Since 2000, he has participated in several wildlife and natural resource management programs and, since 2008, has focused on engaging local people directly in community-based co-management of wildplaces in the Brazilian Amazon. He recently joined the Wildlife Conservation Society’s Brazil Program, as their primary Terrestrial Ecologist for the Amazon Region, and is now faced with the challenge of monitoring mammal populations in the Rio Negro and Purus river basins, across enormous stretches of natural forests and protected areas that often are thousands of square kilometers in size.
Camila Kurzmann Fagundes
Spatial Analysis Coordinator
Camila has a bachelor’s degree in Biology from the Universidade Federal de Santa Maria, and a Master degree in Animal Biodiversity at the same University. She completed her PhD at National Institute for Amazonian Research (INPA) in Aquatic Biology. She has developed studies about spatial conservation planning in relation to the impacts of habitat loss in Amazon, producing maps that show priority conservation areas for chelonians. Her research activities are also focused on vulnerability of organisms to land use/land cover changes and species distribution modelling aimed to management practices. GIS tools have fundamental importance in all the steps of those research themes. She joined the WCS in 2015 to coordinate spatial analysis.
Camila R Ferrara
Aquatic Ecologist
Camila Ferrara has a veterinary degree and has always been very interest in chelonian (turtles, tortoises, and terrapins) behavior and ecology and has been working in Amazon since 2003. During this time she completed her masters and PhD in Aquatic Biology, with a focus on turtle ecology and conservation, at the Instituto Nacional de Pesquisas da Amazônia (INPA) in Manaus, Brazil. She also coordinated for two years on the project Tartarugas da Amazonia (Turtles of Amazonia), managing field-based monitoring efforts, work with local-communities to protect nesting beaches, and environmental education activities. She began working for WCS in March 2013 as the Aquatic Wildlife Ecologist for the Brazilan Amazon Program. Her responsibilities include creating a conservation plan for freshwater turtles in Amazonas State, training professionals, students, and local community members in wildlife monitoring techniques, and coordinating WCS monitoring and conservation efforts aimed at aquatic wildife (especially turtles) priority areas.
Carlos Durigan
Country Director
Carlos Durigan has an academic background in Geography and a wide experience in Environmental Conservation of the Amazon, where he lives and works for more than 20 years. Since finishing his master´s degree in Ecology at the National Institute of Amazonian Research (INPA), he has been engaged in a variety of activities related to biodiversity conservation. These activities have included creation and implementation of protected areas; multidisciplinary, field-based research on biodiversity and socioeconomic diversity; and participation in biological, socioeconomic and ethno-environmental surveys to support projects and actions in conservation units and indigenous lands. He has also participated in a variety of forums and NGOs networks, that have contributed to the formation of socio-environmental public policies for the Amazon region.
Cibele Biondo
Associate Conservation Scientist
Cibele got her undergraduate degree in Biology, from the Univ. of Campinas, (UNICAMP), and further pursued her graduate work at USP in Experimental Psychology/Animal Behavior. Part of her doctorate was fulfilled in the Department of Genetics and Evolutionary Biology at USP. She obtained a post-graduate scholarship to work with Dr. Jaime Gongora at the Univ. of Sydney (Advanced Technologies in Animal Genetics and Reproduction, Faculty of Veterinary Science). Her post-doctoral work occurred at the State Univ. of Sao Paulo, Rio Claro (UNESP-Rio Claro) with Dr. Mauro Galetti, when she published the first work on white-lipped peccary population genetics. Cibele is currently an adjunct professor at the Federal University of ABC in Sao Paulo (UFABC) where she conducts research in the areas of behavior, evolution and molecular ecology with mammals. She has been working with the WCS Peccary Project since 2006 and coordinates a team of researchers that works with dispersal and population genetic structure of peccary populations in the Pantanal basin and highlands. Her team currently involved with the project involves: Ana Carolina Vecchia doctorate candidate at USP, Danilo Aqueu Rufo - M.S. recently completed from USP on “”Relatedness and genetic differentiation of white-lipped peccaries (Tayassu pecari) from the Brazilian Pantanal, Flavia Maria Appolinario da Silva from UNESP-Rio Claro, Mariana Sayuri Tanaka Gotardi from UNESP-Rio Claro, and Dalila Alves Leite from UFABC.
Don Eaton
Limnologist
Don Eaton has been with WCS Brazil since 2005 working on Pantanal/Cerrado program, first as a consultant and later as permanent staff. The focus of the work has been promotion of sustainable land use and conservation of aquatic environments in the Pantanal and bordering Cerrado highlands of central-western Brazil. Eaton’s interests and skills include aquatic ecology, taxonomy of aquatic invertebrates, fishes and plants, surveys of aquatic habitats and communities in relation to land use change and environmental impacts, statistical analyses of monitored biological communities, and GIS. Eaton has a Ph.D. in Ecology, Evolution, and Conservation Biology from the University of Nevada-Reno, a Master’s in Zoology from the University of Montana, and a BA in Biology from Saint Olaf College. His research experience in the US included environmental impact studies of aquatic environments in Montana, West Virginia, and Nevada during the 1980s and early 1990s. In Brazil since 1993, Eaton’s research has included evaluations of environmental impacts on aquatic environments in the Atlantic Forest and Pantanal wetlands, and an entomological investigation of the cause of an endemic autoimmune skin disease (Endemic Pemphigus Foliaceous, also called “fogo selvagem”). Recent publications include assessments of ecological communities in the wake of ongoing land use change in the Atlantic Forest and Pantanal (Ph.D. dissertation), and an experimental evaluation of the environmental and economic benefits of rotational grazing systems in native pasture regions of the Pantanal (Tropical Conservation Science).
Guillermo Estupinan
Fisheries Specialist
Guillermo has a bachelor degree in Biology from the Universidade Federal do Mato Grosso, and a master degree in Freshwater Biology and Inland Fisheries from the National Institute for Amazon Research (INPA). He is specialized in fisheries management, creation and implementation of conservation units, and has professional experience in non-governmental and governmental institutions. Working on the Amazon region since 2000 he has coordinated and participated in several actions focused on the income generation for traditional populations, public policy formulation and preparation of management plans for protected areas. He joined the Amazon WCS-Brazil Program in January 2014 to coordinate the actions of fisheries management and aquatic landscapes.
Haroldo Nery
Administrative Assistant
Harold Nery's degree is in Business Administration from the Uninorte Laureat International Universities. He has an extensive experience in administrative and financial tasks acquired while working with private companies, government organizations and NGOs. He acts in a variety of fields including logistics, purchasing & bidding import, organizing events and workshops, among others.
Jussara Almeida Ramos
Finance Manager
Jussara is graduated in Communication at the Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais. She has more than 20 years of experience in the administrative financial field with NGOs and Public Agencies. She worked with GIZ (Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammanenarbeit) as Finance and Administrative Manager and with CEUC the Amazon state agency for Protected Areas Management. During her professional life, she has lived in Manaus, Belo Horizonte, Brasília and Salvador city, all in Brazil.
Karl Didier
Project Planning, Monitoring & Evaluation Manager
Karl Didier has completed his master (1998) and doctoral (2003) degrees in the US in forest ecology, wildlife ecology, and spatial ecology. He began working for WCS in 2003, at the headquarters in New York, as a landscape ecologist. For many years, he supported WCS projects from all around the world, including projects in Asia, Africa and Latin America, in spatial planning, GIS, spatial analyses, strategic planning, and monitoring. He began working as the Interim Coordinator of the Brazil Program in April of 2012. Currently, he coordinates WCS project principally in the Brazilian Amazon, but also helps in the planning of projects in the Pantanal. He is an adjunct professor at the University of Florida (Gainesville) and the Southern Illinois University (Carbondale). He teaches various courses in planning and monitoring of conservation projects for graduate students, WCS staff, and conservation professionals.
Maria do Carmo Andrade Santos
Community Outreach
Maria do Carmo Andrade has a degree in Biology from the Universidade Federal de Mato Grosso do Sul, and a master's degree in Plant Biology at the same university. She worked as a teacher in regular schools from 1990 to 2007. During this period she taught science education and environmental education. She was a collaborator in Projeto Arara Azul, Projeto Jacaré do Pantanal and taught training courses for teachers. From 2007 to 2015 she worked as a partner of WCS-Brazil in Projeto Queixada. environmental educator in the school of Pantanal and Cerrado surrounding and helped with community outreach.
Maria Luísa da Silva Pinto Jorge
Associate Conservation Scientist
Malu got her undergraduate and Master’s degrees from the Univ. of Sao Paulo (USP-SP), and her PhD from the University of Illinois , Chicago. She is interested in foraging ecology, with special emphasis on how animal movement affects the spatial patterns of plant biodiversity. She has mostly worked in the Amazon, with agoutis, seed dispersal, and forest fragmentation. She recently joined UNESP- Rio Claro’s LaBiC lab for her post-doctoral research to work in the Atlantic forest and focus on an important ecosystem regulator: the white-lipped peccary. She has been looking at two of the last populations of white-lipped peccaries from the Atlantic forest in Sao Paulo. Her research is focusing on group movement patterns and how those movements are affecting spatial patterns of plant regeneration. She will continue to collaborate on the project as a professor at Vanderbilt Univ. and together with the WCS Pantanal peccary team, she will be evaluating their range and landscape use in the Pantanal and its surrounding highlands
Paulino de Oliveira Angelo
Field assistant
A born passionate naturalist, Paulino has been working with the scientists on the Pantanal/Cerrado sustainable land-use program for 5 years. He also assists with the white lipped peccary project and the program’s biodiversity monitoring since 2007. Paulino is a key player in helping the scientists in the field and with the community outreach program. He plays a key role in the implementation of cost effective sustainable land-use practices with our partners. He is also the Futsal coach for our peccary team.