Conservation Staff


Conservation Program Director
Victoria Gehrke, MSc

Originally from Sweden, Victoria draws on her experience from working with conservation projects in countries including Madagascar, Costa Rica and Honduras. Her research and interest lie in tropical forest conservation ecology and forest connectivity. She strongly believes in the grassroots-to-government approach, highlighting community engagement and empowerment for long-term wildlife conservation success.

Research Director
Wahyu Sustanto, MSc

Wahyu has been studying orangutans in Gunung Palung National Park since his Bachelors degree where he himself was supported by GPOCP through a scholarship. Wahyu now facilitates both national and international researchers and students to come to Gunung Palung National Park for various research topics.

Field Coordinator 
Ranti Naruri

Ranti first joined GPOCP as an Environmental Education Field Officer and has delivered over 1000 puppet shows to pre-school children. She has since taken the step towards logistics and implementation of field activities for wildlife conservation.

SUSTAINABLE LIVELIHOODS

Sustainable Livelihoods Manager
Wendi Tamariska, 2019 Whitley Award Winner

Wendi’s focus lies in developing communities in the Gunung Palung landscape within Sustainable Livelihoods such as Non-Timber Forest Products, organic agriculture, and aquaculture. Wendi also joined GPOCP originally as a member of our Education team, but quickly found his passion for wildlife education through community empowerment. Wendi has also recently won the prestigious Whitley Award for global conservation heroes for all his hard work and success with sustainable community development.

Sustainable Livelihoods Field Officer – Organic Farming 
Asbandi

Asbandi works closely with the organic farming groups, recruiting primarily illegal loggers or miners into the groups to help provide alternative and sustainable livelihoods for their families.
Asbandi specializes in making organic compost and leads our organic farming demonstration plots in Bentangor, producing seedlings for reforestation efforts and farmer groups to initiate their own plots.

Sustainable Livelihoods Field Officer – NTFP Artisans
Abdul Samad

Samad works primarily with our Non-Timber Forest Product artisans groups to help develop their skills in product making as well as business management and networking. He also monitors and reports on all product production, value and range across all the groups including the aquaculture and organic farming groups.

Sustainable Livelihoods Field Assistant 
Salmah Sos

Salmah is new to the team but not new to the organization! Salmah did her dissertation with the sustainable Livelihoods community groups, and was so well liked by the communities and staff that we asked her to join us for expanding the Sustainable Livelihood program. Salmah completed her undergraduate studies majoring in Sociology within the Department of Social and Political Sciences, at Tangungpura University.

ANIMAL & HABITAT PROTECTION  

Customary Forest Manager
Edi Rahman, Ian Redmond Award Winner 2018

Edi has been with GPOCP almost since the start and has seen all the changes and successes throughout the years. Edi has a degree in Political Science from Tanjungpura University in Pontianak. Edi works for wildlife conservation through the Customary Forest initiative, where high-biodiversity value forests are identified and legally protected for local communities to manage and use responsibly. This model is a relatively new national conservation strategy but through follow up monitoring and capacity building is proven more than successful. Our Customary Forest Management groups (local villagers who take the responsibility to care for the forest and its inhabitants) received regular capacity building within everything from biodiversity surveying and report making, to agro-forestry and packaging products for sale for a sustainable livelihood.

Customary Forest and Legal Coordinator 
Desi Kurniawati, BA Law

Desi is another GPOCP veteran and leads the way for complex legal processes that is the Customary Forest application and maintenance procedures, as well as for animal protection and persecution follow up.
Desi also leads our Conservation Awareness Radio shows and loves working with communities for their sustainable development and empowerment.

Customary Forest Field Officer 
Hendri Gunawan, BA. Law

Hendri is one of our Bornean Orangutan Caring Scholarship alumni, having graduated with a degree in law. He works closely with the Customary Forest communities to educate, socialize and disseminate information for full informed participation and advice. Hendri is more than enthusiastic and great at winning over even the most skeptic of villagers with well explained legal facts.

Animal & Habitat Protection Coordinator
Sulidra Frederik Kurniawan

Erik applies his mapping and surveying skills across all the programs; refining land management issues and identifying conflict areas. Erik also manages the database of our wildlife crime investigations and is one of our GIS specialists. Erik is also highly creative – often also creating videos, T-shirt designs and stickers for the Education team!

ENVIRONMENTAL EDUCATION & CONSERVATION AWARENESS

Environmental Education and Conservation Awareness Manager Mariamah Achmed, Nobel Women Initiative Award Winner 2016  

Mariamah has a bachelor’s degree in Forestry and has been working for GPOCP for almost 10 years!  Her responsibilities include planning, implementing and evaluating our environmental education and conservation awareness activities. Mayi is also in charge of our Bornean Orangutan Scholarship program where each year GPOCP supports six under-privileged, yet deserving, students to attend university. Mayi makes it her personal mission to work with each student directly to build their capacity and prepare them for a future career in conservation. She has a personal relationship with each student and remains a constant figure and role model in their lives.

Environmental Education Communication & Media Officer Petrus Kanisius

Petrus is vital for our conservation outreach; reporting and publishing all our activities and achievements in local and national newspapers, online news platforms as well as in social media. Petrus has a Bachelor’s degree in Scientific Communication and works closely with the Environmental Education team on field activities and events. Petrus is also a citizen reporter and has been invited to co-author a book with other journalists on environmental topics in Indonesia, aiming to publish in 2020.