Byron Swift

President

Byron Swift is an environmental lawyer and has dedicated most of his career to the conservation of lands and resources in Latin America by the development of local communities. For the past 35 years, he has worked to promote the creation of protected areas and to support innovative programs in watershed protection, sustainable development and environmental policy. He has also published widely on biodiversity, natural resource management, climate change and industrial pollution. Byron has previously directed other organizations such as Nature and Culture International, the U.S. office of IUCN (International Union for Conservation of Nature), the World Conservation Union, and the Rainforest Trust (which he also founded).

Lucila Castro

Lucila Castro

Argentine Director

Lucila Castro is a biologist graduated from the National University of Córdoba, Argentina. She is the current Argentina Director of Natura International.  Her main interests are conservation, population ecology and protected areas.  Her strengths challenged through the articulation of scientific and technical work, institutional and government sector interactions and local community outreach, all aimed towards the accomplishment of clear conservation goals.  She is also working on a PhD project focusing on mammal conservation.  Since 2010, Lucila is a member of the GCFA (High Andean Flamingo Conservation Group) and coordinates the Flamingo population census at the Mar Chiquita Lake in the Cordoba Province, and is also a member of the Flamingo Specialist Group and the Connectivity and Conservation Specialist Group of the IUCN. She is also a Board Member (Member-at-Large, early career scientist) at the International Society on Salt Lake Research, and a Collaborative Researcher at the National Mexico University’s Institute of Ecology.

Staff

María Laura Steffolani

María Laura Steffolani

Coordinator

Biologist graduated from the National University of Córdoba, Argentina and Master in Biology and Biodiversity Conservation from the University of Salamanca, Spain. She began as an intern at the Pacific Biodiversity Institute in 2016 and then joined the Natura International office in Córdoba. Laura is coordinator of the Famatina National Park project and one of her main interests is to accompany local communities in environmental care projects.

Imanol Cabaña

Coordinator

Biologist graduated from the National University of Córdoba, Argentina. Imanol is finishing a PhD in Biological Sciences at the same University, whose research focuses mainly on animal behavior, population genetics and herpetology. In 2014, he joined the South America Biodiversity and Wildlands Project of the Pacific Biodiversity Institute as a scientific advisor. Since 2018, he is a member of Natura International working in projects related to the creation of protected areas, in the evaluation of potential protected areas and collaborates in conservation projects and research of flamingos.

Andrea Michelson

Andrea Michelson

Coordinator and Advisor

Specialist in Ecology graduated from the National University of Buenos Aires, Argentina. She has been working on biodiversity and conservation for more than fifteen years, especially focused on the design and development of projects, strategies and policies related to the creation of protected areas, their planning, improvement and management. Andrea specializes in large-scale projects (regional, eco-regional, national). She has worked for different government areas and for the third sector in Argentina in South American Regional Office (IUCN). She is an active member of the IUCN World Commission on Protected Areas.

Agustina Di Pauli

Agustina Di Pauli

Coordinator

Biologist graduated from the National University of Tucumán, Argentina. she works focused mainly on bird ecology and biological interactions. In addition, she worked in environmental education, ethology and wildlife management in the Horco Molle Experimental Reserve in the province of Tucumán, and in the conservation of shorebirds and sea turtles in Uruguay. Agustina began working at Natura International in 2018. Currently she coordinates a project to create protected areas in Salta and collaborates in the work with local communities in all our projects.

Victoria Lassaga

Victoria Lassaga

Project Manager

Senior student of Biology at the National University of Córdoba, Argentina. Her thesis addresses the biodiversity of mammals in a Nature Reserve of the Defense of the province of Córdoba. Victoria volunteered with sea turtles in Uruguay and is currently conducting a research internship related to the loss of mastofauna in the Chaco ecoregion. She started as an intern at Pacific Biodiversity Institute in 2017 and since 2018 she is in charge of organizing internal processes and monitoring all Natura International projects. her main interests are conservation and ecology.

Agustina Conci

Social Communicator

Degree in Social Communication from the National University of Córdoba, Argentina. She worked as a journalist covering environmental issues, especially the various socio-environmental conflicts in the province of Córdoba. Her radio and print works were dedicated to documenting the progress of deforestation in Cordoba. Since 2019 she has been managing the internal and external communication of Natura International and our social networks and collaborates with the editing of various digital media.

Belén Díaz

Administrative Secretary

She studied English translation and social communication at the University of Cordoba. She was in charge of volunteer programs and professional internships in different NGOs participating in international educational tourism fairs, among other activities. As Natura’s administrative assistant, she is in charge of logistics and organization, providing support in all the projects we carry out and covering the needs of them.

Advisory Committee

Enrique J. Derlindati, PhD

Consultant Professor

Doctor in Biological Sciences from the National University of Tucumán and Professor and Researcher from the National University of Salta, Argentina. Enrique has an extensive experience in the study of flamingos and High Andean wetlands, and his research focuses on the responses of forest birds to human activities. Since 2018, he has been part of our team as an advisor in conservation projects.

Fernando Barri, PhD

Fernando Barri

Consultant Professor

Doctor in Biological Sciences and Professor at the National University of Córdoba, Argentina, and researcher at the Institute of Animal Diversity and Ecology (IDEA-CONICET). Fernando has an extensive experience studying the forests of the Chaco region and working with communities in biodiversity conservation. Since 2018, he has been part of our team as an advisor in conservation projects.

Gerardo Ceballos, PhD

Gerardo Ceballos

Scientific Advisor

Researcher at the Universidad Autónoma de México and member of the Mexican Academy of Sciences. Gerardo is mainly dedicated to the conservation of species and their ecosystems, linking the advances achieved in research with concrete solutions to environmental problems. He is an ecologist and conservationist with numerous books published in Mexico and articles published in the best scientific journals. His work has been awarded multiple prizes in different parts of the world. Since 2018 he has been part of our team as an advisor in conservation projects.