The Belize Fund for a Sustainable Future Announces Appointment of its Executive Director
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Belize City, 16 September 2022 – The Belize Fund for a Sustainable Future (BFSF) is pleased to welcome on board its first Executive Director, Dr. Leandra Cho-Ricketts. Her appointment is a critical step forward in operationalizing this new conservation fund for Belize.
Since the Blue Bonds debt conversion was agreed in November 2021, the Ministry of Blue Economy and Civil Aviation (MBECA) and The Nature Conservancy (TNC) have been working to legally establish the fund and set in place the necessary governance mechanisms. The BFSF was incorporated as a 501(c)3 charitable organization in March 2022. It is governed by a Board of Directors comprising nine members, of which five are non-government, who form the majority, and four are government. The selection of a qualified Executive Director, who will lead the operationalization of this fund, has been a priority for the new Board of Directors.
Dr. Leandra Cho-Ricketts is exceptionally qualified to assume leadership of the new BFSF. She earned a Ph. D. in Marine Sciencesfrom the Centre for Marine Sciences at the University of the West Indies, Jamaica. Over the past two decades, she has applied this expertise to advance marine conservation and scientific research in Belize.
Dr. Cho-Ricketts brings decades of experience in marine conservation science, management, developing multi-stakeholder partnerships, strategic planning, and fundraising. Key achievements in her career includes co-founding the University of Belize Environmental Research Institute which is dedicated to building scientific capacity for the sustainable use and conservation of Belize’s natural resources, and serving as Director of the Coastal Zone Management Institute and Authority from 2002 to 2004.
The Executive Director will be responsible for the development, management and implementation of long-term strategic plans, annual operating plans, and grant award programs as well as the day-to-day management of the BFSF. Dr. Cho-Ricketts assumed her new post as Executive Director on August 22nd, 2022.