On March 3rd, the Caribbean and wildlife around the world lost a kind and committed champion in Marlon Beale. Marlon was a member of the inaugural CEWCL class from Jamaica and was loved and respected by his fellow CEWCL participants and Advisors alike. He was a member of the whales project team. He was the Eastern Zonal Director for the Forestry Department of Jamaica. Marlon was a graduate of the University of the West Indies where he pursued a Bachelor of Science degree in Zoology and held a master’s in Terrestrial Ecology. Prior to this position, Marlon was a conservation science officer at the Jamaica Conservation and Development Trust (JCDT) and also served as Acting Executive Director at the same organization. He was a sports enthusiast and was the manager of the Spanish Town Spartan Basketball team as well as chairman of the St. Joseph Roman Catholic Pastoral Parish Advisory Committee. He was pursuing his doctoral studies within the faculty of Pure and Applied Science, Department of Life Sciences, at the University of the West Indies, Mona, Jamaica. His research was based in terrestrial ecology with a focus on birds, and awaited only his oral defense of his thesis for final grading.
Marlon will be missed by all who know him and is mourned by the EWCL community.
Blog Contribution by Beth Allgood
Beth Allgood is the US Campaigns Director of IFAW and was the Director of the inaugural Caribbean EWCL class
In order to gain a better understanding of the traits and skill sets required for career growth and to achieve leadership roles in the wildlife conservation profession, several Emerging Wildlife Conservation Leaders Board Members and alumni conducted a survey of 27 established environmental leaders. We focused on questions such as how leaders sustain themselves and how they continue their career progressions, particularly as related to perceived barriers for women, and how these leaders maintained their enthusiasm in what is arguably a demanding and oftentimes discouraging discipline. Some of the common themes cited by these leaders included the need for cross-disciplinary training, early childhood connections with nature, focusing on one’s passion for the profession as a key way to cultivate personal strength, and maintaining positive relationships with others. We also solicited advice from these established professionals for our emerging leaders. Please see the below article for the full survey and responses. We would like to thank the established leaders who gave us time for the interviews.
More than a decade ago, while in Australia for a koala conservation workshop, the two of us initiated a conversation about the challenges faced by early career wildlife conservation professionals. We believed that individuals entering the wildlife conservation field had enthusiasm and book learning, but sometimes lacked the opportunity to get basic skill sets and networking opportunities necessary to successfully advance in the profession. That discussion lead to the creation of the Emerging Wildlife Conservation Leaders program, fondly referred to as EWCL by the many who have been participants in –or sponsors and instructors for –this unique leadership training program. EWCL is now in its seventh year of training and boasts 60 graduates with an additional current class of 22 trainees.