World Wildlife Fund is coming to Austin
Join us for cocktails and conversation
while mixing and mingling with other friends of WWF.
Despite continued reports of poaching from around the world, there are stories of hope emerging from southern Africa. Learn from WWF Managing Director, Jeffrey Parrish, PhD, how WWF has helped Namibia conserve half of its land and safeguard its rhinos. Discover what the future holds for Africa’s largest elephant herd in the Kavango Zambezi (KAZA) Transfrontier Conservation Area.
As Managing Director at World Wildlife Fund, Jeff Parrish brings a contagious energy, fierce determination, and entrepreneurial spirit to WWF’s efforts to save our planet. His approach to conservation is grounded in his extensive experience protecting and connecting land and seascapes for wildlife throughout the world. Jefe, the Spanish nickname by which he is known to most all in conservation, is as much social marketer as scientist for wildlife, constantly seeking ways to engage new and diverse constituencies to support a future in which wildlife can thrive.
WWF is intensely focused on protecting flagship wildlife around the world – such as tigers, whales, rhinos, and snow leopards – for this generation and the next, and our portfolio of strategic investments to win this goal is designed and innovated by Jefe. Using his passion for WWF’s mission, he also ensures that WWF’s conservation priorities have the financial and social capital for mission success. He leads innovative high-figure fundraising strategies with entities that can change the game with not just their funding, but also their influence as social drivers on the planet. “Wildlife needs science-based action,” affirms Parrish, “but it also needs an agent!” Earth’s wildlife finds this in Jefe, as he designs creative and inspiring ways to engage the US public in our mission – including partnerships with influencers like Leonardo DiCaprio and corporations like Google.
Prior to joining WWF in 2010, Parrish led the Freedom to Roam (FTR) coalition with the founders and business of Patagonia Inc. There, he developed groundbreaking partnerships and campaigns to promote the protection and connectivity of increasingly fragmented lands and waters in North America. Before FTR, Jefe held several leadership positions over his 12-year career at The Nature Conservancy and at Manomet Center for Conservation Science, most notably as director for TNC’s Global Protected Areas Strategy and Executive Vice-President for Manomet.
Jefe has a doctorate in Ecology from Brown University, and a B.Sc. from Tulane University where he first began studying the phenomenon of animal movements. A bird migration ecologist by his Ph.D. training, his passion for nature was sealed when releasing a tiny Blackpoll Warbler – the weight of 4 quarters – from the shores of New England before it began a 2000 mile journey to South America. “Such wildlife wonders and the migration spectacle itself must remain for my kids and theirs,” says Jefe. He is the recipient of numerous National Science Foundation and American Association for the Advancement of Science fellowships, and is fluent in Spanish.