Conservationists recognised with awards

Three outstanding conservationists were honoured by the IUCN World Commission on Protected Areas at the 5th International Marine Protected Area Congress (IMPAC5).

Dr Eleanor  Sterling Dr Eleanor Sterling
Dr Kristina  Gjerde Dr Kristina Gjerde
Dr María  del Carmen  García Rivas Dr María del Carmen García Rivas

Dr Eleanor Sterling, Director of the Hawai‘i Institute of Marine Biology, who spent more than two decades leading the American Museum of Natural History’s Centre for Biodiversity and Conservation, received the Fred Packard Award in recognition of more than 30 years’ work in conservation. Sadly Dr Eleanor passed away in January 2023.

Lawyer Dr Kristina Gjerde, Senior High Seas Advisor to the IUCN Secretariat, also received the Fred Packard Award, for her efforts to secure legal protections for the ocean beyond national jurisdiction.

And Dr María del Carmen García Rivas, a researcher and ranger with 25 years’ experience working with communities to protect wildlife and restore ecosystems, received the Kenton R Miller Award. This recognised her leadership of the Hurricane Insurance Project in Puerto Morelos National Park, and being a role model for rangers and conservation professionals.