Domitilla Raimondo, SANBI’s Threatened Species Programme Manager elected as Deputy Chair to the IUCN’s Species Survival Commission

09 March 2017

At the recent IUCN World Conservation Congress held in Hawaii in Honolulu in September 2016, the new leadership for the IUCN commissions was put in place.  Dr. Jon Paul Rodriguez from Venezuela was elected as the new SSC Chair. At the first IUCN Council held at the end of the congress, he nominated Ms Domitilla Raimondo as SSC Deputy Chair.  Domitilla was nominated due to the key role she has played to date in the Red List Committee and the Plant Conservation Sub-Committee. And due to her commitment in advancing national red lists and their use in support of conservation action and public policy.

The IUCN Species Survival Commission (SSC) is a science-based network of more than 10,000 volunteer experts from almost every country of the world, all working together towards achieving conservation of threatened species. Most members are deployed in more than 140 Specialist Groups, Red List Authorities, Task Forces and Sub-Committees. Some groups address conservation issues related to particular groups of plants, fungi or animals while others focus on topical issues, such as reintroduction of species into former habitats or wildlife health.  Working in close association with IUCN’s Global Species Programme, SSC’s major role is to provide information to IUCN on biodiversity conservation the inherent value of species, their role in ecosystem health and functioning, the provision of ecosystem services, and their support to human livelihoods.

SSC members provide scientific advice to conservation organisations, government agencies and other IUCN members. The work of the IUCN Species Survival Commission is guided by the Chair and Deputy Chair of the SSC and members of the SSC Steering Committee.

Tilla cactus

 Domitilla Raimondo has been working actively within the SSC for the past seven years, leading the Southern African Plant Specialist Group since 2009. In this role she has built capacity in Red Listing in the SADC region. She also sits on the IUCN’s SSC Plant Conservation Sub Committee and represents national red listing and the IUCN plant network of the SSC on the IUCN Red List Committee.  South Africa is a world leader in species assessment work and in ensuring species assessments feed into conservation planning, protected area expansion and land-use decision making. In her new role as Deputy Chair of the SSC, Domitilla will work to share these lessons with other countries in particular Megadiverse Countries.  SANBI congratulates Domitilla on this new position and is proud that she will be showcasing the work of SANBI at international fora over the next 4 years. 

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