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Annual Report is now online!

Our new annual report is now online and available for download.

International Rhino Foundation Staff & Advisors

Susie Ellis, PhD

Susie Ellis, PhD

Executive Director

Dr. Susie Ellis has been the Executive Director of the International Rhino Foundation for the past five years, overseeing the organization’s administration, fund raising, and field conservation programs in Africa and Asia. She is a member of the IUCN Asian Rhino Specialist Group and serves as its Red List Authority. Prior to joining IRF, she was a Vice President at Conservation International, focusing on terrestrial and marine biodiversity conservation in Asia. Dr. Ellis has worked on projects in more than 35 countries during the course of her career, with species ranging from penguins to pandas, and now, rhinos. She has written more than 100 technical papers, proceedings and book chapters. From 1991-2001, she was Senior Program Officer for IUCN’s Conservation Breeding Specialist Group (CBSG). Dr. Ellis also has worked at the Minnesota Zoo, Lincoln Park Zoo, San Diego Zoo and Sea World in various capacities. Growing up in San Diego, she credits a visit from the San Diego Zoo’s “Zoomobile” to her elementary school with inspiring a career working with animals.
Natasha Anderson

Natasha Anderson

Zimbabwe Rhino Monitoring Coordinator

Australian born Natasha Anderson came to Zimbabwe in 1996 as a volunteer worker after completing a Master of Environmental Studies degree at the University of Melbourne. She has been based in the South East Lowveld throughout her sixteen years in Zimbabwe. Her initial work focused on natural resource management and education projects in the Maranda Communal Lands working under the Mwenezi Rural District Council. Post 2000 she became involved with the Lowveld Rhino Trust when she offered some of her spare time to help with monitoring rhinos – especially those sharing their range with newly settled farmers in the Bubiana Conservancy. Over time she developed opportunities to mesh her interest in education with rhino conservation and under the Sothern Africa Development Community Regional Program for Rhino Conservation, developed education support materials called the Rhino Cards. These materials form the foundation of LRTs current education program, which Natasha helps manage along with her monitoring work on a much expanded population of rhinos in Bubye and Save Valley Conservancies.
Bill Konstant

Bill Konstant

IRF Program Officer

Bill is a graduate of Cornell University (Class of 74) with a lifelong career in wildlife conservation. Since 1981 he has held positions with the World Wildlife Fund – US, Wildlife Preservation Trust International and Conservation International, and has helped establish endangered species conservation programs at the Philadelphia Zoo and Houston Zoo. Among the publications he has co-authored are several of significant value to the international conservation community: Megadiversity: Earth’s Biologically Wealthiest Nations; Hotspots: Earth’s Biologically Richest and Most Endangered Terrestrial Ecoregions; and Wilderness: Earth’s Last Wild Places. Mammals are Bill’s special interest. In addition to his work for the International Rhino Foundation, he serves as a member of the IUCN/SSC Primate Specialist Group and as a scientific advisor to the Margot Marsh Biodiversity Foundation and the Mohamed bin Zayed Species Conservation Fund. Bill married his high school sweetheart, Nannette, in 1975 and they have two children, Melanie and Evan. “I can’t remember a time in my life when I haven’t been fascinated by the Animal Kingdom,” Bill confesses. “If I had lived when the dodo, the passenger pigeon or Stellar’s sea cow were heading down the road to extinction, I’m one hundred percent positive my efforts would have focused on trying to save those species. Today, rhinos desperately need our help if they are going to survive, so joining the IRF team is a real chance for me to make a difference for a fascinating group of animals.”
Gloria Goeres

Gloria Goeres

IRF, Program Assistant

Gloria grew up in Columbia, SC where she attended the University of South Carolina and earned both a bachelor and master degree in Education. After graduate school, she was employed for five years as an elementary school teacher in the Columbia area. She enjoyed the relationships with her students and the art of teaching very much, but recently decided it was time for a new adventure! So, in pursuit of that adventure, she moved to the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia where she works as the Operations Manager for DCA Financial Group. Part of the adventure included her marriage in August to Clay (the real reason behind the move to Virginia!). She currently lives in Edinburg, VA and is excited about the opportunity to learn and teach again as a part of IRF!
Sectionov (Inov)

Sectionov (Inov)

Indonesia Liaison

Sectionov Inov or we call Inov has been working in rhino conservation in Indonesia for over 10 years. He has a B.S. from Agriculture University of Bogor Indonesia (IPB). He has been the IRF Indonesian Liaison since 2006. He was a Program Officer Yayasan Mitra Rhino or Indonesia of Rhino Friend since 2000 till 2006. He started research about Javan rhino in Ujung Kulon NP with ecology competition Javan Rhino and Banteng (2000-2005) and then continues to research invasion Arenga palm (Langkap) or arenga obtusifolia and impact for Javan rhino habitat. He also involved with several study and research Sumatran rhino in Way Kambas collaboration with Rhino Protection Unit (RPU) and Sumatran Rhino Sanctuary (SRS).
Bibhab Kumar Talukdar, PhD

Bibhab Kumar Talukdar, PhD

Asian Rhino Program Coordinator

Bibhab Kumar Talukdar is a Masters in Zoology with specialization in Animal Ecology and Wildlife Biology and did his Ph.D. on Anatidae. He has been involved in rhino research and conservation since 1996 in south and south east Asia. He is actively engaged with the Indian Rhino Vision 2020 in Assam that aims at translocating greater one horned rhinos within Assam to enhance rhino population and area of occupancy within Assam. He is currently assisting Yayasan Badak Indonesia through IRF to strengthen conservation of critically endangered Javan and Sumatran Rhino.
Raoul du Toit

Raoul du Toit

African Rhino Program Coordinator

A native Zimbabwean, Raoul du Toit has coordinated conservation initiatives that have helped to develop and maintain the largest remaining black rhino populations in Zimbabwe. As a central figure in the development of private wildlife conservancies in Zimbabwe during the 1990s, du Toit was one of the few professionals left to keep these rhino breeding projects viable during the turbulent 2000s. Raoul established the Lowveld Rhino Trust in 2009, with support from the International Rhino Foundation and other donors, to secure large swaths of protected habitat. Today, du Toit and his small team work in and around the large Lowveld reserves to monitor rhinos, address injuries, reinforce efforts to tackle poaching, and build community awareness of the need to conserve rhinos. He also advocates on the international level for rhino protection and has helped reintroduce rhino populations in Botswana and Zambia.
Joseph Christman

Joseph Christman

Disney's Animal Kindgom

I have worked in the zoo industry for 35 years as a keeper and curator and have been at Disney's Animal Kingdom since 1996.I am currently the AZA studbook keeper for all rhinos in North America and the International studbook keeper for the White rhino and Sumatran rhino. My wife of 35 years is a veterinary technician, my oldest son is in grad school and my youngest son is a veterinarian. I enjoy biking, bowhunting playing with my 3 grand kids.
Cathy  Dean

Cathy Dean

Director, Save the Rhino International

Cathy has been director of Save the Rhino, one of IRF’s closest partners, for 10 years, and had an eclectic history before becoming a conservationist. She studied art history at university, and then worked in art book publishing and retailing for several years. When London’s Tate Museum undertook a large campaign to fund the Tate Modern Gallery, Cathy was one of the lead fundraisers. After that position ended (and the Museum funding secured!) she was a free-lance fundraiser for several years. Then, she visited Madagascar and fell in love with nature on what she describes as “one of those perfect days”, seeing lemurs, sifakas, and other wildlife in an area where few westerners had ever visited. When she saw the advertisement for the position at Save the Rhino in London, she knew she had to have the job!
Deba Kumar Dutta

Deba Kumar Dutta

Senior Monitoring Manager, WWF-India

Deba Dutta was born in Assam and has been working as the Indian Rhino Vision 2020 monitoring coordinator in Manas National Park, since 2008. Indian Rhino Vision 2020, a partnership among IRF, WWF, the Government of Assam, the Bodo Territorial Council and the USFWS, has translocated 18 rhinos to Manas since 2009.
Margaret Moore

Margaret Moore

Advisor, Arlington, VA

Maggie Moore is IRF's former Program Officer. With a background in economic development, Maggie has spent 15 years managing and fundraising for development and conservation programs in Asia, Africa and Latin America.
Patty Peters

Patty Peters

Columbus Zoo and Aquarium, Columbus, OH

Patty is the Vice President of Community Relations for the Columbus Zoo and Aquarium as well as the Wilds. Her zoo career began in 1979 with an animal internship at the Columbus Zoo before graduating from The Ohio State University. The focus of her work soon shifted from taking care of animals to supporting their care through public relations, marketing and development efforts. Patty currently serves on the AZA Professional Development Committee and is the administrator and an instructor for the Managing for Success courses offered in conjunction with George Mason University. She served as both chair and advisor for the AZA Public Relations Committee, vice-chair for the Conference Committee and was a member of the National Awareness Campaign Committee.
Ann Petric

Ann Petric

Illinois USA

Ann Petric has extensive experience in management and conservation of black rhino. She currently serves as the Black rhino SSP Coordinator for AZA zoos. She has been a leader in conservation worldwide and especially supportive of rhino conservation through the Species Survival Commission of IUCN - The World Conservation Union. Ann formerly worked for the Chicago Zoological Society.
Kelly J. Russo

Kelly J. Russo

Houston Museum of Natural Science

Kelly Russo is the Director of Web Marketing at the Houston Museum of Natural Science where she manages online media content and email marketing. Prior to working at the museum, Kelly worked in the zoo and conservation field for over 15 years. Kelly is a member of the IUCN Tapir Specialist Group Steering Committee and also coordinates the TSG Outreach & Education Committee. Kelly has volunteered for the IRF since 2003 and provides website, marketing and interactive strategies support.
Amit Sharma

Amit Sharma

Rhino Conservation Coordinator, WWF-India

Amit Sharma has been intensively working with rhinos since 2005, and prior to that was focused on WWF’s work with other large mammals, including elephants and tigers. Among other projects, he oversees WWF’s work under Indian Rhino Vision 2020, a partnership among WWF, IRF, the Government of Assam, the Bodo Territorial Council and the USFWS. “What I like best about my job is that there are new challenges every day,” he says. Amit was formerly a geography teacher, and then took additional course work in Geographic Information Systems and Remote Sensing. When the job at WWF opened up, he jumped at the chance to put his new skills to work for Indian wildlife. Amit has had a love of nature since childhood, when he used to visit a nature reserve near his home with village elders.
Steve Shurter

Steve Shurter

White Oak Conservation Center, Yulee, FL

Working with four of five species of rhinoceros Shurter has been involved with the captive management of rhinos since 1979. As the Director of Conservation at White Oak Conservation Center he oversees captive programs for black, white, Indian and Sumatran rhinos and supports field conservation efforts through the IRF. Currently serving as the Chair of the Association of Zoos and Aquariums Rhino Advisory Group he advises zoos on rhinoceros breeding, health, husbandry and research priorities.
Dana Stayton

Dana Stayton

Kelly, Hart & Hallman

Dana is an attorney in Fort Worth, Texas who also represents numerous nonprofit organizations. Dana has represented IRF since 2000 when she joined Kelly Hart & Hallman LLP. She works closely with IRF staff in drafting and reviewing contracts for services and grant awards and in assisting them with other legal matters. Dana’s representation of IRF has motivated her to become more involved in wildlife conservation. For example, she serves on the board of an organization formed to promote Endemic Caribbean conservation.
Dee Steer

Dee Steer

Kelly, Hart & Hallman

Dee is an attorney in Fort Worth, Texas who represents numerous nonprofit organizations, including many wildlife organizations such as IRF. He has represented IRF since its formation in 1991 as The International Black Rhino Foundation and worked closely with IRF’s founding participants in designing IRF’s original corporate structure and translocating rhinos to the United State and Australia. “Representing IRF has allowed me to further my interest in wildlife conservation and to work with Board members who are passionate about the conservation of rhinos and who are able to implement their visions.”
Laura Hess

Laura Hess

Pro Bono Finance Manager