World Commission on Protected Areas

WCPA Chair Award

The WCPA Chair Award is given at the discretion of the Chair to members of WCPA who have provided exceptional and dedicated leadership and service to the Commission.

WCPA Chair Awards 2016 IUCN WCC Hawai'i


Penelope (Penny) Figgis

Penelope FiggisPenny  has dedicated her life conservation and service to the World Commission on Protected Areas. As Director of the Australian Committee for IUCN, she established a prominent leading role for IUCN and WCPA contributing to Australian conservation policy discussions and planning for the IUCN World Parks Congress 2014. As WCPA Regional Vice-Chair for Oceania, she has been a proactive and energetic member of the international Steering Committee and Executive of WCPA, providing valuable support to the Chair and Deputy Chair

Penny has worked tirelessly at state, national and international levels to promote the importance of protected areas under all types of governance and management regimes. She has contributed to many significant conservation outcomes, including establishment of new protected areas, increased budgets for protected areas, Indigenous employment in land and sea management, the promotion of connectivity conservation and the incorporation of ecosystems into climate change mitigation and adaptation responses. She has championed the WCPA Young Professionals and improved governance within WCPA, and is a prolific conference organiser and author, who has promoted WCPA’s priorities and published extensively on conservation topics.

Andrej Sovinc
Andrej SovincAndrej has made an outstanding contribution to the IUCN World Commission on Protected Areas, and to conservation in Europe. As WCPA Regional Vice-Chair for Europe, Andre has worked to maintain a diverse and active network in a challenging region with multiple countries, cultures and languages. He has shown dynamic leadership and strong commitment to capacity development and outreach, working with a range of partners ranging from the Europarc Federation to small local NGOs, academic institutions and the private sector, and has committed substantial personal time to promoting the WCPA agenda in the region.

In particular, his efforts to organize the Little Sydney in Europe event stand out as a major accomplishment, building on the World Parks Congress. The meeting helped to determine regional priorities and next steps in delivering the Promise of Sydney at regional and national levels within Europe as well as making significant positive inputs to the debate on reviewing the European Nature Directives.

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