Meet The Team

Collectively our experiences and professional skill sets culminated in the formation of BioCarbon Partners (BCP), a social enterprise with a lean commercial approach combined with a grass-roots social enterprise mission.  We aim to transform rural communities and landscapes through our innovative approach. A key to our strategy is local access and presence.  This local expertise means a stronger focus on project execution and delivering impact.  Our entire senior management team is based in Africa, close to our community and government partners, and to our project sites. We are a part of the community in our projects and we live our mission.

Hassan Sachedina – Managing Director

Born and raised in Kenya, Hassan is a career conservationist with 19 years of experience. His mission is to strengthen conservation management and conservation financing strategies in Africa. Hassan has lived and worked in Tanzania’s Selous and Tarangire ecosystems, Kenya’s Laikipia and Tsavo ecosystems, and now lives in Zambia’s Luangwa Valley. Prior to founding BCP, he was Vice President of REDD+ developer Wildlife Works, and a Partner in Conservation Capital, which catalyzed $210 million of conservation business investments globally. Hassan’s PhD thesis from the University of Oxford was awarded the Audrey Richards Prize for the best Africanist thesis written over two years from any UK university. He also holds an MSc degree from Oxford University, and a BA from Middlebury College. His scientific work has been published in journals including Ecosystem Services, Oryx, Conservation Biology and Current Conservation. Hassan has undertaken short leadership courses under the US Army Reserve Officer Training Corps and at Harvard Business School.  Hassan has served as a gazetted Honorary Wildlife Police Officer/Warden in Zambia and Kenya, and holds a commercial pilot’s license. Hassan is on the Boards of non-profits such as the Baraka Foundation, Conservation Lower Zambezi, Conservation South Luangwa and is a member of the IUCN Sustainable Use and Livelihoods Specialist Group.

Molly Crystal – Technical Team Coordinator

Molly Crystal holds an MSc in Human Rights from the London School of Economics, and a B.A. in International Studies-Political Science from the University of California, San Diego. She has reported on humanitarian engagement, immigration policies, transitional justice and psychology, and has worked to resettle refugees from seven Sub-Saharan African countries. As Founder of the BioCarbon Partners Trust, Molly is committed to ensuring that BCP’s REDD+ projects provide meaningful alternatives to deforestation and bring significant positive benefits to local stakeholders. The BCP Trust launches small and large-scale projects in partnership with community stakeholders, that are designed to sustainably address local causes and drivers of deforestation (such as poverty). Molly oversees BCP’s Community Engagement Team, who are responsible for promoting widespread community engagement, identifying local drivers of deforestation, and working with local stakeholders to design projects that meaningfully improve local livelihoods and reduce pressures to engage in deforestation. She also monitors and ensures the company’s compliance with relevant human rights standards and the principles of FPIC (obtaining Free, Prior and Informed Consent from stakeholder communities).

Paul Cowles – Chief of Party, USAID/Community Forests Program

Paul Cowles is a senior manager with over 25 years of experience helping communities conserve and sustainably manage their natural resources. He has lived and worked in sub-Saharan Africa for 18 years, leading teams of up to 90 employees to implement USAID funded Community Based Natural Resource Management (CBNRM) projects. He believes that the key to making CBNRM work is putting communities at the center of capacity building efforts. Large-scale community-based natural resource management (NRM) programs are inherently complex and Cowles thrives on finding ways to operationalize and blend the social and biological sciences to implement them effectively. Paul works for BCP and is the Chief of Party (COP) of the USAID funded Community Forests Program.

Leon-Jacques Theron – Senior Carbon Accounting Manager

Leon-Jacques most recently was a consulting ecologist at the Cirrus Group in South Africa where he focused mainly on developing large scale biomass inventories for REDD projects in Democratic Republic of the Congo and Zambia.  Leon-Jacques also co-authored assessments on the regional and national scale impacts of climate change on key biodiversity areas, livelihoods and ecosystem services and appropriate adaptation and mitigation responses. Since 1996, he has worked on a wide range of conservation projects in South Africa. Leon-Jacques holds an M. Sc. Zoology degree from the University of Pretoria. Today Leon-Jacques manages BCP’s Forest Carbon Accounting /Science department including viability analyses and project documentation.

Godfrey Phiri – Senior Community Engagement Manager

Godfrey Phiri is an experienced Social Development worker who has worked all over the sub-sahera region. Godfrey possesses extensive expertise in participatory development techniques for local area development, social research, community engagement, organizational development and institutional capacity building, focusing on value chain and business development, and innovation within natural resource sector through the use of the CNRBM Model. He has two Bachelors of Arts in Development Studies and Philosophy with International Project Planning Monitoring and Evaluation for Impact. More specifically, Godfrey has great capacity to work as a team player and has great respect and collaborates well with other experts with relevant skills on the issue at hand. Godfrey has undertaken various community engagement, development, coordination and evaluation assignments both nationally and internationally to foster rural development using Participatory Learning Action in the sub region.

Juraj Ujházy – Enterprise Development Coordinator

Juraj has managed a variety of conservation and enterprise development projects in Zambia and Uganda for the past ten years. His experience ranged from managing national or field-based conservation programs, supporting protected area management and government authorities, and/or implementing small-scale enterprises around protected areas. In Zambia, Juraj had worked with African Parks Network in managing some field programs in Liuwa Plain, and assisted COMACO with managing their business sourced from Luangwa Valley smallholders. With his background in investment banking, Juraj has also been involved in a variety of conservation finance projects, such as  setting up conservation trust funds or engaging in tourism development. Prior to joining BCP in August 2014, Juraj spent eight years working for WCS and African Parks Network combined. Juraj has a work experience on three continents and has brought excellent financial skills and business acumen from his private sector career, where he helped many private companies to grow. He holds MBA from the University of Arizona and MA in Environmental Studies / International Conservation from Prescott College.

Shadreck Ngoma – Senior Community Engagement Coordinator

Shadreck Ngoma is an experienced community development worker with over ten years of experience in community engagement work. Shadreck has in the past worked with various communities across Zambia in both research and development work. He holds a Bachelor of Science with Education degree from the University of Zambia. Shadreck has keen interest in working with communities and trying to better their lives through environment and natural resource management using participatory methodologies. Before Joining BCP, Shadreck worked with The Centre for International Forestry Research (CIFOR) on a United States Agency for International Development (USAID) funded research Project aimed at providing influential evidence to the development of the National Joint Program (NJP) and further support and amplify the formulation of a comprehensive National REDD+ Strategy (NRS) for Zambia.

Human Resources Officer

Chongo Kamwinshi joined BCP in December 2015 and has 16 years experience in Human Resource Management. Chongo grew up in Italy, Rome. Chongo has worked in different sectors including; health, mining and has done consultancy work for NGO’s. Chongo leads BCP’s Human Resources department. Chongo is passionate about the opportunity to work with BCP to improve the lives of rural communities in Zambia.

Graeme Ellis – Technical Coordinator

Graeme Ellis developed his passion for Conservation at a young age. Growing up in South Africa provided ample opportunity to experience a variety of ecosystems and instill in him the need to be part of a self-appointed group of passionate people wanting to conserve these systems. He qualified with a Technical Degree in Nature Conservation and then furthered his studies to include a Bachelor’s Degree in Botany, Zoology & Environmental Sciences. Graeme began his career as a Specialist Guide/Naturalist before creating his own company, Mantis Logistics, which provided technical and logistical support to both local and international researchers working in ecosystems across Southern Africa. An opportunity stemming from this resulted in the next 6 years being spent as Logistics Manager for a study abroad program on Savanna Ecology based in the world famous Kruger National Park. Graeme worked with South African National Parks both in Kruger National Park and the Kgalagadi Transfrontier National Park for a further 5 years before moving to Zambia in early 2014. He managed the Zambian Carnivore Program’s research site in Liuwa Plain National Park before joining BCP in South Luangwa in early 2016. Graeme’s real skill and passion lies in the technical and logistical aspects of Conservation Projects and Programs. As BCP`s Technical Coordinator he forms part of our Conservation Team and is primarily responsible for Conservation Management Plans and the implementation thereof; as well as the day to day operations of our Mfuwe Head Office and Technical Team.

Patrick Nyirenda – Conservation Coordinator

Patrick Nyirenda joined the BCP team in July 2016, bringing with him 25 years of experience in conservation. His passion and dedication to Conservation in Zambia has led to him being recognized as a leader in protecting and managing Zambia’s natural resources. He started his career with the National Parks and Wildlife Services (NPWS) as a Wildlife Police Officer focusing on Environmental Education with schools. Before joining BCP, Patrick was the Senior Warden for Eastern Province with the Zambian Wildlife Authority (ZAWA). Between his services to the Government Conservation Departments, he spent 5 years working with Conservation NGOs as a Livelihoods Coordinator in the Luangwa Valley. Patrick has also co-authored a book with Craig Doria, “Field Guide to Snakes of the Luangwa Valley”, the definitive book used by guides and tour operators in Zambia’s South Luangwa National Park. As Conservation Coordinator at BCP, one of Patrick’s’ main responsibilities is implementing and maintaining effective law enforcement at our sites with a particular focus on the law enforcement efforts at Rufunsa Conservancy.

Nchimunya Haambote – Livelihoods Manager

Nchimunya Haambote has a professional background in Environmental Health Sciences, Climate Change and Sustainable Local Development in addition to six years of experience in project and water resources development. He has an extensive network from working with government institutions and non-governmental organisations. He was part of ]the team of planners and engineers to develop the “National Guidelines for Sustainable Management of Water and Sanitation Infrastructure in Schools” under the USAID funded Schools Promoting Learning Achievements through Sanitation and Hygiene (SPLASH) Project. At BCP, Nchimunya is the Livelihoods Manager where he utilizes his practical experience in project management, community engagement and multi-stakeholder involvement to create ad improve community driven strategies that will support livelihood improvement projects, with a goal of improving local food security and providing new and sustainable alternative sources of income to local communities through REDD+ implementation.