Past Secretariat Chairs
DR. PHIL BISHOP. IUCN SSC Amphibian Specialist Group Co-Chair (2012-2020)
Dr. Phil Bishop was a Professor in the Department of Zoology at the University of Otago (New Zealand) and specialized in amphibian conservation until his unanticipated passing in 2021. He worked on amphibian behaviour and conservation for over 30 years, and had a MSc in Parasitology (University of Wales) and a PhD in Behavioural Ecology (University of the Witwatersrand, South Africa). He was based at the University of Otago between 1997 and 2020 and played an important role in developing conservation action plans and raising public awareness about the very primitive frog genus (Leiopelma) found only in New Zealand. He had extensive experience working with many different species of amphibians in several different countries. He published over 80 scientific papers and his latest research focused on amphibian reintroductions. In June 2011 an IUCN-led initiative called the Amphibian Survival Alliance (ASA) was set-up to coordinate the implementation of amphibian conservation at a global level and Phil was their Chief Scientist since its inception and until his passing. Phil was, and always will be, a foundational figure in global amphibian conservation.
DR. CLAUDE GASCON. IUCN SSC Amphibian Specialist Group Co-Chair (2005-2014)
DR. JIM COLLINS. IUCN SSC Amphibian Specialist Group Co-Chair (2005-2012)
Past Secretariat Members
JOS KIELGAST. IUCN SSC Amphibian Specialist Group Programme Officer (-2024)
Jos’s role within the ASG is to help coordinate the running of the group, ensuring members are kept informed of developments and the group continues to meet its commitments to maintaining and updating the ACAP. Jos has been interested in amphibians since he was a tadpole. He holds an MSc. in biology and is currently working on his PhD at the University of Copenhagen in Denmark. He has a broad interest in ecology, evolution and conservation and worked with a variety of topics all sharing a context amphibian biology. His research has focused on the epidemiology of amphibian chytridiomycosis in Africa and Europe, biodiversity and systematics of amphibians in central Africa and more lately using environmental DNA to study amphibians and other aquatic animals. jkielgast[at]amphibians.org.
JULIA GESCHKE. SSC Liaison (2022-2023)
Julia has a Master of Environmental Management degree in conservation and ecosystem science from Duke University, where she completed her master’s project on habitat and population connectivity of salamander species in central North Carolina. Her interests include conservation planning, geospatial analysis, and community science. She was the Reptile and Amphibian Conservation Coordinator at the Indianapolis Zoo’s Global Center for Species Survival, where she worked to support all of the IUCN SSC’s herp specialist groups. She is also on the board of the Foundation for the Conservation of Salamanders.
LOUISE HOBIN. IUCN SSC Amphibian Red List Authority Programme Officer (2015-2022)
Louise was a Programme Officer for ASG’s Amphibian Red List Authority; her position was hosted by Synchronicity Earth, UK. Her time was wholly focused on the work of the ARLA. She joined the ARLA in March 2015 and was based in Cornwall, UK.
LAUREN WARR. IUCN SSC Amphibian Red List Authority Programme Officer (2019-2021)
Lauren was an IUCN Red List Officer at Re:wild (formerly Global Wildlife Conservation), where her time and focus was dedicated to the work of the ARLA. She joined the ARLA in February 2019 and was based in Houston, TX, USA.
DR. MARCILEIDA (Leida) DOS SANTOS. IUCN SSC Amphibian Specialist Group Programme Officer (2015-2020)
Leida’s role was to help coordinate the running of the group, and act as lead contact for the ASG Secretariat for the Communication & Education Working Group. Leida dedicated over 25 years to research and education. Her PhD focused on the powerful role of conservation education in minimising global amphibian declines. She has extensive experience as an educator both for secondary and tertiary levels in Brazil, New Zealand and the United Kingdom. Leida has led environmental education, citizen science and outreach programmes for several years, nationally and internationally.
DEBBIE BISHOP. IUCN SSC Amphibian Specialist Group Administrator (2016-2020)
Debbie has had a lot of experience in the field working on frogs around the globe as a research assistant since 1985. Although her background is in desktop publishing, administration and human acoustics she has a passion for wildlife and the outdoors. She is currently based in New Zealand and was the administrator for the ASG Secretariat.
REBECCA CHOQUETTE. IUCN SSC Amphibian Specialist Group Programme Officer (2016-2018)
Dr. HELEN MEREDITH. IUCN SSC Amphibian Specialist Group Programme Officer (2013-2016)
Helen worked as an ASG programme officer whilst completing a PhD on improving the impact of global amphibian conservation. She has maintained close ongoing ties and collaborations with ASG after moving to the Amphibian Survival Alliance, where she was Executive Director from 2016-2020, and Chief Development Officer from 2020-2023. She continues to work on bridging the gap between scientific evidence and action on the ground, and supporting the pivotal role of local conservation leaders to move amphibian conservation in effective, positive and sustainable directions.