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Kate Newman

Vice President, Forest and Freshwater Public Sector Initiatives

Kate Newman
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As vice president for public sector initiatives, Kate Newman specializes in large-scale conservation planning and policy development in Africa and Asia. She credits her fascination with vast, complex landscapes to two inspiring early life experiences. The first was on the Delaware River in Pennsylvania where Russell Warner, her high school environmental science teacher, would kick off many an exciting outing club adventure from his land on one of the densely forested hills reaching up from the banks of that beautiful river— a national treasure important to millions of people across its basin. The second was a few years later in the distant forests of Zaire (now the Democratic Republic of the Congo) where Kate had the great fortune of being posted in the Peace Corps, and stayed on with the US Agency for International Development. Again, she was captivated by a magnificent river (the Congo) surrounded by extraordinarily rich and intact forests that support the livelihoods of millions and, in this case, host more species than anywhere else in Africa.

In her two-and-a-half decades with WWF, Kate has built upon these experiences through her subsequent work in ecoregion planning, community-based conservation, protected area management, conservation finance, and green economy strategies. She helps WWF teams work with their government and civil society partners to secure a harmonious balance between conservation and development in their ecologically rich landscapes. Currently, she is working with WWF teams in Mozambique, Myanmar, Cambodia, Bhutan, and other countries as they implement programs linking local policy makers with the technical assistance they need to build green economies through enabling policies, practical decision-support tools, and stronger institutional capacity.

“I am continuously humbled and inspired by our government and civil society counterparts in countries around the world who make the most extraordinary leadership decisions on the environment— and they are doing so while struggling with more dramatic economic and climate change pressures than we can sometimes imagine. These are brave and true visionaries, and I feel it is a great privilege to be supporting them with our work. They will make the world a better place. ”

More on Kate


Vice President


  • BA Anthropology, University of Virginia
  • MSc Environmental Management, University of London

Areas of Expertise

  • Large-scale conservation planning (national, multi-national)
  • Public Policy
  • Public Sector Finance
  • Green Economy, Natural Capital and Ecosystems Services
  • Community based conservation
  • Forest and marine conservation

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