VCA Team

The VCA Programme is managed by Earthmind, a Swiss NGO based at the IUCN Conservation Centre near Geneva. We have a small core team and a growing network of special advisors and partners supporting our efforts to scale up recognition of voluntary commitments to conserve nature

The core team

Francis Vorhies
VCA Programme Director
Founder and executive director of Earthmind with over 25 years of international experience in sustainable development and business. Previous experience includes CEO at the Earthwatch Institute Europe; chief economist at IUCN; and resource economist at the, African Wildlife Foundation. PhD and MA in Economics from the University of Colorado and Diploma in Environmental Management from the University of Cape Town. IUCN Commission member - CEESP, CEM , SSC, and WCPA..
Sebastian Winkler
VCA Partnerships
Earthmind Senior Associate and past Vice President Programme & Outreach at the Global Footprint Network. Over 20 years of international experience in biodiversity policy with particular expertise on the interface between biodiversity, business and the global economy. Masters in Environmental Management from the University of Tried and a post-graduate certificate in environmental engineering from the Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne.
Magnus Sylven
VCA Listings
Former Chairman of the WWF Large Herbivore Initiative (LHI). He headed the LHI until 2010 and has worked for the Swedish government and WWF International, after which he became an independent conservation consultant based in Switzerland. Magus has a PhD in Animal Ecology from Lund University and is a Board Member of the European Centre for Nature Conservation.
Karl Wagner
VCA Listings
Earthmind Senior Associate and independent environmental consultant. Well known for his leadership of international campaigns for WWF, the EU, the World Academy of Arts and Science, the WILD Foundation, among others. MA Freshwater Ecology from the University of Vienna.

Our special advisors

Johannah Bernstein, Verbier
Steven de Bie, Klarenbeek NL
Arthur Eijs, The Hague
Jan Fehse, Oxford
Sarah French, Geneva
Alex Gabb, Geneva
Sean Gilbert, Washington DC
Jennifer Gooden, Oklahoma City
Aurelien Guingand, Paris
Jesse Hastings, Geneva
Stephanie Presber James, San Francisco
Louise Kjær-Hansen, Copenhagen
Louise Lamb, Dublin
Julian Metcalfe, London
Anja Nikolova, Skopje
Zeke Oman, Divonne-les-Bains, France
Michael ‘t Sas-Rolfes, Cape Town
Sam Young, Santa Barbara