Monday, May 1, 2017

Laila Mostafa Abdullatif named Director General of Emirates Wildlife Society in association with WWF

Laila Mostafa Abdullatif named Director General of
Emirates Wildlife Society in association with WWF

Abu Dhabi, UAE, 1 May 2017: Emirates Wildlife Society in association with WWF (EWS-WWF) announced today the appointment of Laila Mostafa Abdullatif as Director General, with an overall responsibility to lead the organisation locally and represent WWF in the UAE and  regionally.

An EWS-WWF veteran since 2009, Abdullatif will now strategically lead the environmental non-governmental organisation which has deep roots and a solid legacy in the UAE, having been on the ground since 2001. EWS-WWF’s vision is to build a future in which people live in harmony with nature and the organisation works with a range of partners to successfully create and implement several conservation, education projects and initiatives across the UAE and region. These contribute to supporting the nation’s sustainability agenda and conserving the country’s natural heritage, whilst simultaneously assisting in delivering WWF’s global priorities in the region.

H.E. Razan Khalifa Al Mubarak, Managing Director, EWS-WWF stated: "On behalf of the EWS-WWF Board and wider EWS-WWF team, I would like to congratulate Laila on her recent appointment. Over the past eight years, Laila has significantly contributed to the progress of the organisation, and played an important role in its successes. With her accomplished tenure, I have no doubt that Laila is the right leader to take the organisation, and talented team, forward into its next exciting era." 

Commenting on her new position, Abdullatif stated: “I’m incredibly honoured to be assigned this critical role. As an organisation our focus has been, and will continue to be delivering high impact, science based, robust conservation solutions which contribute to conserving the environment for the well-being of society and future generations.  However, to do this we continue to recognise that strategic partnerships with the UAE government and a range of partners and civil society are fundamental to our success. Moving forwards, we will continue to nurture these partnerships, create new collaborations and engage with the public through a diverse range of opportunities as we highlight the vital connection between nature and humanity.” 

A zealous Environmental Science Graduate from the American University of Sharjah, Abdullatif’s knowledge and enthusiasm propelled her to advance at EWS-WWF with various roles and accomplishments throughout the years. On joining the organisation, Abdullatif’s focus was climate change, specifically the Ecological Footprint Initiative, supporting a Steering Committee comprising of a range of highly respected, senior government stakeholders. This project led to the successful development of the UAE Indoor Lighting Standard (in partnership with the Ministry of Environment and Climate Change, EAD, Emirates Standardisation and Metrology Authority and the Global Footprint Network). Following this, another of Abdullatif’s notable achievements was spearheading the strategic planning division which created the organisation’s latest 5-year corporate strategy, focussed on ensuring the organisation delivers high-impact conservation solutions through science, research, policy, education and awareness.

Forging and developing mutually beneficial partnerships have played a key role in EWS-WWF’s efforts to drive conservation impact, as can be seen in Abdullatif’s work with Fujairah Municipality and HSBC Bank Middle East Ltd in the establishment of Wadi Wurayah National Park, the first mountain protected area in the UAE.  Most recently, in her role as Deputy Director General, Abdullatif played a key role in establishing a first-of-its-kind Environment Endowment Fund, a joint initiative with the Mohammed Bin Rashid Global Centre for Endowment Consultancy.

The outgoing Director General of EWS-WWF, Ida Tillisch, will be moving on from her current role after a decade with the organisation. “Ida has been an invaluable member of EWS-WWF for ten years,” said H.E. Al Mubarak. “She has made a significant contribution to the growth in the depth and breadth of our skills and programmes over this time. Ida also established several important building blocks for the organization that will be pivotal for the future as EWS-WWF continues to advance towards an ambitious mission and makes a positive difference to our environment and the UAE communities.”

Continuing her dedicated work ethic towards protecting the UAE’s local habitat, Tillisch will continue her connection with EWS-WWF and has accepted a role on the EWS-WWF Advisory Board. Tillisch said: “It gives me great pride to hand over the baton to Laila, who already is a great and inspiring leader for the team. I congratulate Laila on her appointment and am confident that EWS-WWF will reach new and greater heights under her leadership.”

To learn about EWS-WWF’s corporate membership programs, volunteer programs and opportunities for collaboration, please visit

About Emirates Wildlife Society – WWF
Emirates Wildlife Society is a national (UAE) environmental non-governmental organisation established in 2001 under the patronage of HH Sheikh Hamdan bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Ruler’s representative in the western region and Chairman of Environment Agency-Abu Dhabi. Emirates Wildlife Society works in association with WWF, one of the world’s largest and most respected independent conservation organisations, with offices in 100 countries. The association is commonly known as EWS-WWF. Our vision is to build a future where humans live in harmony with nature. Our mission is to conserve nature and reduce the most pressing threats to the environment. We work with people and institutions in the UAE and region, to implement conservation solutions through science, research, policy, education and awareness. For more information please visit

About WWF
WWF's mission is to stop the degradation of the earth's natural environment and to build a future in which humans live in harmony with nature. The Climate and Energy Practice is WWF’s global programme addressing climate change, promoting renewable and sustainable energy, scaling up green finance, adaptation, engaging the private sector and working nationally and internationally on implementing low carbon, climate resilient development.

For more information, please visit

Peter Dickinson
Independent International Zoo Consultant

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