IGCP coalition celebrates 20th anniversary and launches effort to develop new strategy

We are pleased to share the news that Eugène Rutagarama, IGCP Director since 2003, will soon lead a task force that will craft a new strategy for the organization. Dr. Augustin Basabose, currently Species Conservation Coordinator, will assist by taking on day-to-day management of IGCP as Interim Director effective April 1, 2012.

2011 marked the 20th anniversary of the founding of the International Gorilla Conservation Program (IGCP) by the African Wildlife Foundation (AWF), Fauna & Flora International (FFI), and the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF). IGCP and its coalition members recently met in celebration of this important milestone, and renewed their commitment to this unique collaboration and to continue to effectively address the ongoing and future challenges to mountain gorilla conservation.

The future context for conservation across the mountain gorilla range presents clear challenges, and requires that IGCP remain innovative and strategic. Following an effective first 20 years, IGCP and its coalition members considered it an appropriate moment to commit to a thorough strategic review.

As of April 1, 2012, Eugène Rutagarama will hand over day-to-day management of IGCP to Dr. Augustin Basabose so that he can lead a task force that will review the role of IGCP in the conservation of mountain gorillas. “Having been involved in the development of IGCP in different positions for the last fifteen years, I feel privileged to dedicate, for the next months, my full attention to a new strategy that will keep IGCP at the forefront of the ever-changing context of mountain gorilla conservation,” states Rutagarama.

This strategic review will be a collaborative process and will involve current and former IGCP staff, representatives from the three coalition members as well as partner organizations and institutions in the Democratic Republic of Congo, Rwanda, and Uganda.

“Eugène has provided enlightened leadership for IGCP for the past decade, and his history of and commitment to mountain gorilla conservation extends as far back as the 1980s,” remarks Katie Frohardt, IGCP Board Member and Executive Director of Fauna & Flora International (FFI) in the United States. “We are deeply grateful that he has stepped forward to lead this effort, as there simply is no one better qualified than Eugène – with his expertise, experience, and commitment – to forge a bright new plan for IGCP engagement in support of mountain gorilla conservation for the coming decade.”

Filling the role of Interim Director for IGCP effective April 1, 2012, will be Dr. Augustin Basabose, who currently serves as Species Conservation Coordinator for the organization. “I am excited to work alongside my colleagues within IGCP as well as our many partners in the region in this new role for me in the organization,” says Basabose. “With the ongoing support from the IGCP coalition members in the years to come, I am sure that together we will reach our conservation goals.”

Eugène Rutagarama has been Director of the International Gorilla Conservation Programme since 2003, and has been with the organization for more than fifteen years.

Eugène Rutagarama has been Director of the International Gorilla Conservation Programme since 2003, and has been with the organization for more than fifteen years.

Dr. Augustin Basabose, currently IGCP's Species Conservation Coordinator, will serve as Interim Director as of April 1, 2012.

Dr. Augustin Basabose, currently IGCP's Species Conservation Coordinator, will serve as Interim Director as of April 1, 2012.

The technical team of IGCP. Back from left to right: Benjamin Mugabukomeye, Eugene Rurangwa, and Altor Musema. Seated from left to right: Anna Behm Masozera, Eugène Rutagarama, Beda Mwebesa, Wellard Makambo, Augustin Basabose, and Stephen Asuma. Not pictured is Maryke Gray.

The technical team of IGCP based in Democratic Republic of Congo, Rwanda, and Uganda. Back from left to right: Benjamin Mugabukomeye, Eugene Rurangwa, and Altor Musema. Seated from left to right: Anna Behm Masozera, Eugène Rutagarama, Beda Mwebesa, Wellard Makambo, Augustin Basabose, and Stephen Asuma. Not pictured is Maryke Gray.

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