Patrons of Nature

HSH Prince Albert II of Monaco, Patron of Nature Photo: © Palais Princier de Monaco

HSH Prince Albert II of Monaco, Patron of Nature

IUCN founded the Patrons of Nature in 2010 to rally global leaders and mobilize resources in support of  the Union’s vision of a just world which values and conserves nature. Patrons of Nature provide strategic guidance to the Director General and generate investment for IUCN’s Programme as well as specific flagship initiatives.   

IUCN Patrons of Nature 

HSH Prince Albert II of Monaco, Patron of NatureHSH Prince Albert II of Monaco has been Regent of the Principality since 2005. In 2006, HSH the Prince decided to establish his own Foundation, the Prince Albert II of Monaco Foundation, to address our planet’s environmental challenges.

The Foundation encourages sustainable and fair management of natural resources and places humankind at the centre of its projects. It supports the implementation of innovative and ethical solutions in three areas: climate change, water and biodiversity. In order to be an influential player in environmental protection on an international scale, the Foundation has established a network of men and women from the worlds of politics, science and economics, all of whom are ready to take joint action towards a common objective.

The Prince Albert II of Monaco Foundation is an active Member of IUCN.

In the words of His Highness, "It is important to join forces to increase awareness of the importance of safeguarding our environment. We need to continue our efforts, now more than ever, to protect our planet; it is the responsibility of every single one of us so as to ensure the future of humanity.”


HM Queen Noor, Patron of Nature

Her Majesty Queen Noor Al Hussein is an international public servant and advocate for cross-cultural understanding, conflict prevention and recovery issues such as refugees, missing persons, poverty, climate change and disarmament. Her peace-building work has focused on the Middle East, the Balkans, Central and Southeast Asia, Latin America and Africa.

Queen Noor’s work in Jordan and the Arab world has focused on national and regional human security in the areas of education, conservation, sustainable development, human rights and cross-cultural understanding. Since 1979, the initiatives of the Noor Al Hussein and the King Hussein Foundations, which she founded and chairs, have advanced development thinking in Jordan and the Middle East through pioneering best practice programs in the fields of poverty eradication, women’s empowerment, microfinance, health, and arts as a medium for social development and cross-cultural exchange.

Queen Noor has made environmental priorities an essential component of her work to promote human security and conflict resolution. Shortly after her marriage in 1978, she became patron of Jordan’s Royal Society for the Conservation of Nature (RSCN), the Middle East’s first environmental NGO responsible for nationwide nature reserves, environmental clubs, the integration of biodiversity concepts into school curricula, for the region’s first eco-tourism/rural development projects, and for regulating diving, protecting endangered marine species, and clean up of coastal beaches and shores. RSCN programs have become regional models for conservation and sustainable development providing training and capacity building.

The Queen also chaired Jordan’s National Commission in 1990 which developed Jordan’s National Environment Strategy, the region’s first such initiative, and Jordan’s Environment Law which set standards for water use and quality, specifications to measure and control air pollution, and conditions for the establishment and operation of wild and aquatic nature reserves.  She founded the Arab World’s first children’s museum in 1988 and its mobile wing targeting young people in rural areas with computers, and educational materials and recreational activities focused on environmental protection, the sciences, health, and history.

Internationally, she has focused on environmental conservation and human security with emphasis on water and Ocean health and protection issues. She is a Founding and Emeritus President of BirdLife International, Trustee Emeritus of Conservation International, member of the Ocean Elders and has received the United Nations Environment Programme Global 500 Award among other honors for her activism.

Queen Noor is also involved with a number of other international organizations advancing global peace-building and conflict recovery. She is also President of the United World Colleges (UWC), a network of 17 equal-opportunity international IB colleges around the world which foster cross-cultural understanding and global peacebuilding; a Trustee of the Aspen Institute, Advisor to Search for Common Ground and Trust Women – the Thomson Reuters Foundation annual conference aiming to put the rule of law behind women’s rights.

In recognition of her efforts to advance development, democracy and peace, Queen Noor has been awarded numerous awards and honorary doctorates in international relations, law and humane letters.


HRH Prince Carl Philip of Sweden, Patron of NatureHRH Prince Carl Philip of Sweden, Duke of Värmland, is the second child of His Majesty King Carl  XVI Gustaf and Her Majesty Queen Silvia. In 2015, he married HRH Princess Sofia. Their first child, Prince Alexander,  was born on 19 April  2016.


Prince Carl Philip is a Major in the Swedish Amphibious Corps, has an interest in arts, is a graphic designer and photographer (closely collaborating with Swedish photographer and explorer and IUCN Goodwill Ambassador Mattias Klum).

He also participated in some of the journeys that were conducted for the documentary film Expedition Linné. A nature lover, outdoors sportsman (skiing and sailing in particular), the Prince is, among others, patron of the charity Lilla Barnets Fond which supports medical research and the development of care for newborn babies in Sweden, and the sailing race Volvo Ocean Race.


Greg Carr, Patron of natureGregory C. Carr,  President, Gorongosa National Park Restoration Project, Mozambique.

Greg Carr was raised near Yellowstone National Park in the State of Idaho, USA. He earned a Masters in Public Policy from Harvard University in 1986.   Carr subsequently created several successful computer and internet companies.

In 1998 Carr resigned from his for-profit boards and dedicated himself to philanthropic activities.  In 1999, he co-founded the Carr Center for Human Rights Policy at Harvard University.  

In January of 2008, Carr signed a long-term Public-Private Partnership with the Government of Mozambique to restore and co-manage the country’s flagship national park, Gorongosa. The various Departments of the Gorongosa Management Team:

- have increased wildlife in the Park more than 10-fold through better protection and selective reintroductions (the Park’s large fauna was nearly extirpated during a generation of civil conflict in the country);

- started an agroforestry and reforestation program on Mt. Gorongosa, protecting the only true rainforest in Mozambique and a critical water catchment for the Park;

- signed a contract with a private corporation that controls 270,000 hectares to add that land to the Park, creating a wildlife corridor north to the Zambezi River;

- created the E.O. Wilson Biodiversity Laboratory.  The Laboratory: conducts research with partnering Mozambican and international universities; is implementing a multi-decade all-taxa census of species in the Park; teaches advanced biology courses to scores of young Mozambicans annually; is creating the first Masters in Conservation Biology degree in Mozambique, which will be taught entirely in the Park.

- provides health care, agricultural, and education assistance to 175,000 local people who live in sixteen traditional communities that share the greater Gorongosa ecosystem with the Park.


Dr Sylvia Earle, Patron of NatureDr Sylvia Alice Earle (USA) is Explorer-in-Residence at the National Geographic Society, Founder of the Sylvia Earle Alliance (S.E.A.) / Mission Blue, Founder of Deep Ocean Exploration and Research Inc. (DOER), Chair of the Advisory Council for the Harte Research Institute and former Chief Scientist of NOAA.

Author of more than 200 publications and leader of more than 100 expeditions with over 7,000 hours underwater, Dr Earle is a graduate of Florida State University with M.A. and PhD. degrees from Duke University and 27 honorary doctorates. Her research concerns the ecology and conservation of marine ecosystems and development of technology for access to the deep sea.

Dr Earle is the subject of the Emmy® Award Winning Netflix documentary, Mission Blue, and the recipient of more than 100 national and international honors and awards including being named Time Magazine’s first Hero for the Planet, a Living Legend by the Library of Congress, 2014 UNEP Champion of the Earth, Glamour Magazine’s 2014 Woman of the Year, member of the Netherlands Order of the Golden Ark, and winner of the 2009 TED Prize, the Walter Cronkite Award, the 1996 Explorers Club Medal, the Royal Geographic Society 2011 Patron’s Medal, and the National Geographic 2013 Hubbard Medal.

Dr Earle is one of IUCN’s greatest allies in marine conservation, and together with her, IUCN is leading several campaigns to increase the number of marine protected areas and improve high seas governance, among others.

Soichiro and Reiko FukutakeSoichiro and Reiko Fukutake

A native of Okayama, Japan, Mr. Soichiro Fukutake joined Fukutake Publishing (now Benesse Holdings, Inc.) in 1973 and became Chairman and CEO in 2007. He assumes the honorary adviser from October, 2016. Through his Benesse Art Site Naoshima projects, Mr. Fukutake spearheaded the Inland Sea of Japan renaissance around Naoshima, Teshima, and Inujima focused on art, nature and architecture for more than 25 years. In 2004, he established the Naoshima Fukutake Art Museum Foundation (now Fukutake Foundation), opened the Chichu Art Museum on Naoshima, and was named honorary citizen of Naoshima. He has led the Setouchi Triennale, which is the international Art Festival held every three years on a dozen islands in the Seto Inland Sea, as a general producer since 2010. His honorary awards include the Minister of Education Award for Fine Arts (2008), AIJ Appreciation Prize (2010), JIA Grand Prix (2011), and Montblanc de la Culture Arts Patronage Award (2012). In his quest for a sustainable future for the planet, he played a key role in establishing the Association for the Promotion of Electric Vehicles in 2010 to reduce carbon emissions, and currently serves as the organization’s Honorary Chairman. Mrs. Reiko Fukutake is the founder and Executive Director of Rei Foundation Limited, which aims to attain social change through sustainable human development as a means of expanding people’s life opportunities and their capacity to make responsible decisions as members of the global community.  


Dr Jane Goodall, Patron of Nature

Dr Jane Goodall, DBE, Founder, Jane Goodall Institute and UN Messenger of Peace 

Dr Jane Goodall is  among the world’s most renowned ethologists, a globally famous voice of nature and a long-time member of the IUCN Species Survival Commission. In July 1960, at the age of 26, Jane Goodall travelled from England to what is today Tanzania and bravely entered the little-known world of wild chimpanzees. She was equipped with nothing more than a notebook and a pair of binoculars. But with her unyielding patience and characteristic optimism, she won the trust of these initially shy creatures. She managed to open a window into their sometimes strange and often familiar-seeming lives. The public was fascinated and remains so to this day.

Today, Jane’s work revolves around inspiring action on behalf of endangered species, particularly chimpanzees, and encouraging people to do their part to make the world a better place for people, animals, and the environment we all share.

The Jane Goodall Institute is a global community conservation organization that advances the vision and work of Dr. Jane Goodall. By protecting chimpanzees and inspiring action to conserve the natural world we all share, JGI helps improve the lives of people, animals and the environment.​ Founded in 1977 by Dr. Goodall, JGI inspires hope through the collective action of community-centered conservation, the innovative use of science and technology, and their global Roots & Shoots program which empowers young people of all ages and is now  active in more than 140 countries.


Dr Richard Leakey, Patron of Nature

Dr Richard Leakey is currently a Professor of Anthropology at Stony Brook University, New York where he also serves as the Founder and Chair of the Turkana Basin Institute, a Kenya based research facility that studies the history of life, past climate change and origins of humans.

Formerly Director of Kenya’s National Museums, Director of the Wildlife Conservation and Management department, founding Director and Chairman of the Kenya Wildlife Service, Member of Parliament in Kenya and Head of the Public Service and Secretary to the Cabinet, Richard Leakey is now focused on funding the research institute at Turkana. He is Chair of the Kenya chapter of Transparency International and Chair of WildlifeDirect, a web-based conservation advocacy and fundraising organization.

Richard Leakey played a key role in efforts to combat elephant and rhino poaching in the early 1990s. He has actively campaigned for the protection of the Great Apes and has become increasingly vocal about the threats to biodiversity arising from climate change and human population growth. Richard Leakey is Kenyan, lives in Nairobi but travels widely to promote his concerns and interests. He has published widely and has participated in many documentaries.

"For too long we have abused nature and the health of this planet. We must recognise that conservation is not a choice but an imperative and those who stand tall in support of saving nature's riches for unborn generations should feel proud, not apologetic. IUCN is a fundamental tool in fashioning our future.


Henk and Akemi Rogers, Patrons of NatureDutch born Henk Rogers spent 11 years in The Netherlands, eight years in New York City, and four years in Hawaii (University of Hawaii). In 1983, Henk developed a computer game called “the Black Onyx”, the first RPG (Role Playing Game) in Japan, which would become the top-selling game in Japan in 1984. Henk is probably more famous for his involvement with the game Tetris. He and the author of the game, Alexey Pajitnov, are partners in The Tetris Company, which still manages all rights to the Tetris brand worldwide. In 2002, Henk and his wife Akemi founded Blue Lava Wireless, a company that developed and published mobile phone games. In 2005 Henk sold this company and retired from game publishing.
A month after selling Blue Lava, Henk suffered a near-fatal heart attack. Henk refocused his life on four missions about which he is extremely passionate - ending the use of carbon-based fuels, ending war, making a backup of Earth life by sending life as we know it to other planets, and finding out how the universe ends and doing something about it.
In 2006, Henk and Akemi founded the Blue Planet Foundation to pursue his mission of ending the use of carbon-based fuel. First focusing on Hawaii, Blue Planet Foundation helped pass progressive clean energy policies in the state legislature and the Public Utilities Commission, including the nation's first mandate for the use of 100% renewable energy for electricity generation. Blue Planet has become the foremost renewable energy advocate in Hawaii.
Henk is Chairman of PISCES (the Pacific International Space Center for Exploration Systems). He has developed a Mars-like habitat where potential astronauts spend long periods of time in a relatively small space as if living on Mars. He also is putting together an international consortium to build a Moon base to study what living in the future might be like, Henk has taken his Kona ranch and Honolulu home off grid. The Energy Lab at his ranch, home to Blue Planet Research, has developed energy storage systems and is working on the future of hydrogen as a fuel for transportation (both fuel cells and internal combustion) and cooking.
Henk is Chairman of Blue Planet Software, Blue Planet Foundation, Blue Startups, Blue Planet Energy and Immersive Worlds. He has an Honorary Ph.D. from the University of Hawaii. He is the Honorary Consul of the Kingdom of the Netherlands to Hawaii, Guam and the Northern Marianas. His accolades include Hawai‘i Institute for Public Affairs Ho'oulu Award (2014), Pacific Business News CEO of The Year (2015) and The Netherland-America Foundation Lifetime Achievement Award (2016).
Akemi Rogers started a foundation (Aloha Keiki) to help the children of Fukushima, who have been exposed to long-term, low-dosage radiation. The foundation brings children from affected areas to Hawaii to have a physical break from the radiation as well as a psychological break from the depressing situation they are experiencing at home.


Dr Richard Sneider, Patron of Nature

Dr Richard Sneider is the co-founder of One World Star Holdings International LTD (OSI), and its Chief Strategic Officer, overseeing its mergers and acquisitions. OSI is a vertically integrated global apparel and fashion enterprise with manufacturing and sourcing across the globe, which supports environmental and conservations initiatives throughout the world. OSI operates under the Shangyin Glogal Co (SYG) and is part of the Shanghai Stock Exchange. Dr. Sneider is also a principal of Earthbar LLC, a health supply retail company.

Richard holds academic degrees in philosophy, psychoanalysis, and holds a  PhD in Intellectual History from Claremont Graduate School, with a specialty in political ideology and hegemony and in identifying objectivity in strategy - a tool he has applied in his expeditions, as well as in business strategic planning. He collaborates with political and business leaders around the world, in matters related to environment, conservation and sustainability.

Dr. Sneider works on international advisory boards participating in conflict resolution negotiations in politically sensitive regions, collaborates with leaders on conservation and sustainability, has partnered with the United Nations on initiatives and acts as IUCN FFSG Global Chair.

Dr Sneider, an extreme explorer, has a deep-rooted interest in fieldwork. He is fascinated by nature, traditional societies, and their interaction. With decades of rainforest field exploration, and ocean and freshwater diving, Sneider has surveyed pristine places in the Americas, Africa, and Asia, where he has had the great fortune to be part of biodiversity monitoring programs, often in areas not previously surveyed or collected. He has been deeply involved in the world of Aquaria for 35 years and still designs, builds, and sustains freshwater eco-systems, as well as participates in freshwater fish field surveys in the Amazon, Mexico and Western Papua.

His concern for rainforests, freshwater habitats, and his belief that support for species survival, in concert with human communities, is an essential component of conserving a healthy planet, have prompted him to join the Chairman’s Council of Conservation International, the Board at the Los Angeles Zoo, the ICOA Board of National Geographic and the Board of the Humpty Dumpty Institute. Through these organisations, OSI and through his own activities, he actively participates in field projects, biodiversity research and analysis, and funding and advocacy for environmental concerns.


Mr Erik Solheim, Patron of NatureErik Solheim was Norwegian Minister for the Environment and International Development from 2007 to 2012 and for International Development 2005-07. He is a former leader of the Socialist Left Party of Norway and a former member of the Norwegian Parliament, as well as former Chair of the OECD Development Assistance Committee. On 3 May 2016, United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon announced that Solheim would take over the post of Executive Director of the United Nations' Environment Programme, in June 2016.

During his terms as Minister, Erik Solheim launched a major international policy initiatives in support of climate change mitigation and the protection of nature: Reduced Emission from Deforestation and Forest Degradation (REDD+). and Energy+, For this he was awarded the “Champion of the Earth” by the United Nations. Another main achievement is the innovative Norwegian Nature Diversity Act. Among other main achievements during his terms as minister he brought Norwegian development assistance up to 1%, he opened eight new national parks as well as passing the laws for the main Oslo forests natural reserve. He got passed the Nature Diversity Act, the biggest piece of environmental legislation in Norway for decades.

Solheim is also an experienced peace negotiator. He was the most recognizable figure in the peace negotiations between the Sri Lankan government and the Tamil Tigers and has also made contributions to peace in Nepal, Sudan and a number of other countries.

“I am extremely honoured to be a Patron of Nature”, he said, “I consider IUCN to be absolutely crucial to the global struggle for sustainability, poverty reduction and the protection of the beauty of mother earth. With joint efforts we will prevail!”


Jessica and Adam Sweidan, co-founders, Synchronicity EarthJessica and Adam Sweidan 

To address global biodiversity loss, Adam and Jessica founded Synchronicity Earth in 2009, a UK-based charity, which identifies conservation priorities and finds the people best placed to tackle them. Synchronicity Earth has two key goals: to increase the scale and impact of environmental philanthropy, and to partner with the most effective organizations and individuals to reduce the loss of species and ecosystems.

Prior to establishing the charity, Jessica ran The Synchronicity Foundation that she and Adam created in 2000, overseeing donations to projects across the globe. A slightly different approach to philanthropy meant that Adam and Jessica were deeply engaged in the projects and people they supported; project ideas were either generated through meaningful encounters, by seeking out solutions to problems, or by being recommended a direction from a trusted partner. As a result, the portfolio became a mosaic of projects which included support for a range of themes, like: scholarships and education; endangered species; social and economic development; creative endeavors and art education; health care and medical clinics; human rights and relief efforts; and the well-being of children. The Synchronicity Foundation has worked with over 70 projects in nearly 40 countries.

Adam is a founding partner and Chief Investment Officer of Aurum Fund Management Ltd. He has been investing in the alternative investment market for more than 20 years. Adam graduated from Northwestern University in Chicago with a Bachelor of Arts degree in History. Jessica also holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from Northwestern University in Philosophy and Art.

In 2015 Adam and Jessica were made Honorary Conservation Fellows for the Zoological Society of London.


Work area: 
Global Policy
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