SCB 2018 Award Winners

SCB Service Award winners Natalie Ban (Marine Section), Cilingir Fatma Gozde (Conservation Genetics Working Group), Joel Clement (North America Section), James Russell (Oceania Section), Atte Moilanen (Europe Section), and Paul Butler (Conservation Marketing & Engagement Working Group). Not picture: Simon Hedges (Asia Section), Luis Miguel Renjifo and Victor Galvan (Latin America and Caribbean Section), and Nathan Bennet (Social Sciences Working Group).

The Society for Conservation Biology (SCB) is excited to announce the winners of its 2018 regional service awards for outstanding contributions to biodiversity protection. 

Whether working to connect indigenous rights to resource management or developing software applications to support biodiversity conservation, SCB award winners work to bridge the gap between the science and practice of conserving Earth’s biodiversity. 
Winners are nominated by SCB Groups that work regionally or topically to implement the Society’s mission and many will be recognized in front of their peers later this year at SCB conferences. 
"It is heart warming to find out that work with concepts and computational methods in conservation planning has such support from the SCB,” said Atte Moilanen, winner of a Distinguish Service Award. “I'm thankful to friends, students, and collaborators in conservation science for the many, often late, discussions over these topics.”
Distinguished Service Awards recognize individuals whose work advances the science and practice of conserving biodiversity. 2018 DSA winners include:
  • Simon Hedges for his work on the conservation and management of elephant populations, including the development of DNA monitoring methods.  
  • Atte Moilanen for developing ecologically-based computational methods that support solutions to land-use and resource allocation. 
  • Luis Miguel Renjifo for his work in the Neotropics on land-use change, capacity building and assessment of extinction risk.  
  • Victor Galvin for his work on coral reef conservation, restoration, and conservation outreach in the Dominican Republic. 
  • James Russell for his work on the eradication of invasive species on islands and his impact on conservation policy in New Zealand. 
SCB also recognizes early career professionals who make outstanding contributions to conservation. 2018 Early Career Conservationist award winners include:
  • Clingir Fatma Gozde for applying cutting-edge genomic methodologies to address conservation challenges of critically endangered turtles in Southeast Asia. 
  • Natalie Ban for her work advancing social-ecological research and the incorporation of human dimensions and indigenous rights and values in marine conservation planning and resource management. 
  • Nathan Bennett for his leadership in advancing the impact of conservation social science on policy. His research has provided critical insights into the role of indigenous people in conservation in Canada, the relationship between small-scale fishers and marine protected areas in Thailand and the Mediterranean Sea, and the effective and equitable governance of marine protected areas globally.
"I feel excited and honored for receiving the SCB's Conservation Genetics Working Group Early Career Conservationist Award,” said Clingir Fatma Gozde. “I believe bridging genomics research and conservation applications is critical for addressing real-world conservation problems more adaptively and receiving this award encouraged me to keep up what I have been doing so far. I am thankful to all my supervisors and collaborators since none of the projects I was involved could be achieved without effective teamwork."
Edward T. LaRoe III Memorial Award 


"I believe it is our responsibility as scientists and policy professionals to ensure that public policy at all levels is grounded in science. When provided the opportunity to link policy directly to emerging scientific understanding I leapt at the chance. When the notions of public service and science-driven policy became warped and desecrated by politicians, I resisted. In making these decisions I stand on the shoulders of those who came before me, many of whom were LaRoe awardees. Many thanks to the North America Section of SCB for this honor."

Joel Clement


The SCB North America Section selected scientist and policy expert Joel Clement for The Edward T. LaRoe III Memorial Award for his contributions to climate adaptation science and for demonstrating courage in upholding the highest standards of scientific integrity in government service. The award targets individuals who show leadership in government service and translate the principles of conservation biology into real-world conservation. 
Clement authored the Department of Interior’s first climate change adaptation policy, and led development of an international program of Arctic climate resilience activities. He also led related efforts to address threats to Arctic coastal villages and ecosystems from climate change.
Last year, Clement resigned from the Department of Interior where he had served as director of the Office of Policy Analysis before being reassigned to an accounting role, a move he said was made in retaliation for speaking out on the dangers posed by climate change to the health and livelihoods of Native Alaska communities. He continues to speak out in support of action on climate change and scientific integrity. 
“As a young professional I was in awe of the notable individuals who won the LaRoe Award over the years, so I am deeply honored, and more than a little stunned, to be on the receiving end myself,” Clement said. 
Building Nature’s Brand Award
The Society is also excited to announce Paul Butler as the winner of the Brandy Award, presented by SCB’s Conservation Marketing and Engagement Working Group. Paul is the Senior Vice President at Rare, a leading behavior change organization that uses behavior science to conservation change how communities and nations value, relate to, and conserve biodiversity. Paul is recognized for bringing marketing strategies to the field of biodiversity conservation and applying them on the ground to produce change in human behavior. 
“I’d like to sincerely thank the nominator and selection committee for the honor," Butler said of receiving the Brandy Award. "We have trained campaign managers from over 50 countries on four continents to design and run social marketing campaigns to promote behavior change so people and nature thrive – these local campaigners working in some of the most beautiful, remote, biodiversity-rich places on earth are the real heroes of this story.”
SCB Groups will honor their award winners at SCB congresses across this this June through October.  

Nathan Bennett is the recipient of an Early Career Conservationist Award from the Society's Social Sciences Working Group. "In the past, conservationists mainly viewed people as the problem," Bennett said. "However, people are also integral to conservation solutions. The conservation social sciences provide a rigorous approach to integrating the human dimension considerations into conservation policy and practice. Engaging with social science can help to produce more equitable, effective, robust conservation."

European Early Career Conservationist Award

  • Dr. Piero Visconti received the European Early Career Conservation Award from the SCB Europe Section in 2018 for his scientific contribution to the understanding of species and ecosystems response to global changes and his extraordinary engagement in the science-policy interface.