Patricia Zurita is the Chief Executive Officer of BirdLife International, the world’s largest nature conservation partnership, bringing together over 120 organisations worldwide to conserve birds, their habitats and global biodiversity, working with people towards sustainability in the use of natural resources. Patricia is also the first woman from a developing country (Ecuador) to become CEO of an international conservation organisation. Prior to BirdLife, Patricia was the Executive Director of the Critical Ecosystem Partnership Fund (CEPF), a global multi-donor fund enabling civil society to participate in and benefit from conserving some of the world’s most critical ecosystems. Patricia also led the Conservation Stewards Program in Conservation International (CI), implementing conservation agreements that provided economic incentives to local and indigenous communities in developing countries in exchange for their commitment to protect biodiversity. Before that, Patricia worked with the Government of Ecuador monitoring the oil and gas industry and infrastructure in national parks and reserves, which made her realise that she would need to take a Masters in Economics to increase her impact in conservation.
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