WAZA Names United Nations Coordinator Cress as New CEO

Date: 2017/03/31

 

The WAZA Council selected Cress following a global search that included over 300 applications.

 

The World Association of Zoos and Aquariums (WAZA) strengthened its commitment to conservation and global cooperation today with the selection of Doug Cress as Chief Executive Officer of the organization that represents over 300 member institutions in more than 50 countries.


Cress has nearly two decades of experience leveraging international partnerships on behalf of endangered species. He spent the last six years with the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), where he focused on issues such as illegal wildlife trade, biodiversity protection, great apes, and sustainable development.


"I am honored and excited by the opportunity to work with the World Association of Zoos and Aquariums," said Cress, who is from Portland, Oregon, USA. "These institutions not only guard the long-term future of some of the earth's most endangered species, but they also contribute significant resources towards conservation of wildlife and wild spaces. Zoos and aquariums will increasingly become central to ensuring the world's biodiversity survives."
The WAZA Council selected Cress following a global search that included over 300 applications.


"Doug has a set of very strong skills and experience to successfully lead WAZA for the future," said Susan Hunt, Chair of the WAZA Council and Chief Executive Officer of the Perth Zoo in Australia. "We are confident he can help WAZA and its members fulfill their mission to maximize their conservation impact and emphasize the important role they play in society."


Cress served as the Programme Coordinator from 2011 to 2016 of the United Nations Great Apes Survival Partnership (GRASP), which works to protect chimpanzees, gorillas, orangutans and bonobos and their habitat in Africa and Asia. Earlier, Cress was the Executive Director of the Pan African Sanctuary Alliance (2002-2011), Vice-President / Development of the Orangutan Conservancy (2007-2011) and Executive Director of the Great Ape Project (2001-2004).


Cress also worked as an award-winning journalist from 1979 to 1999.


As WAZA's Chief Executive Officer, Cress will manage the day-to-day operations of the Association, under the general guidance of the WAZA Council. He will lead WAZA and its accredited members in realizing their collective vision to achieve the potential of zoos and aquariums globally to make a real difference for animals, species, habitat conservation and sustainability.

 

About WAZA


Founded in 1935, the World Association of Zoos and Aquariums (WAZA) represents over 300 accredited institutions in more than 50 countries. WAZA members include both regional bodies such as the European Association of Zoos and Aquaria (EAZA), the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA) and the Southeast Asian Zoo Association (SEAZA), in addition to individual zoos and aquariums around the world. WAZA's headquarters are in Gland, Switzerland. For more information, please visit www.waza.org or contact doug.cress@waza.org.

 

> to overview

  •