Staff

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Brian Smith
Senior International Adviser
Brian has led WCS’s Asian Coastal Cetacean Program since 2001, demonstrating leadership over 20 years in conducting cetacean research and conservation projects in countries including Bangladesh, Cambodia, Fiji, India, Indonesia, Myanmar, Nepal, the Philippines, Thailand, and Vietnam. In 2006, Brian initiated and has since then continued to lead the WCS Bangladesh Program, also working closely with linkages at NY and Bangladesh and with external stakeholders and donors. Brian currently serves as the Asia Coordinator for the IUCN Species Survival Commission (SSC) Cetacean Specialist Group. He is also a member of the Society for Marine Mammalogy Conservation Committee, World Commission on Protected Areas/IUCN SSC Marine Mammal Protected Area Task Force, and the Convention on the Conservation of Migratory Species of Wild Animals (CMS) Aquatic Mammal Working Group.
Md Zahangir Alom
Country Representative, Program Manager - Sundarbans/SMART/Wildlife Trade
Zahangir has been a member of the core WCS team in Bangladesh since October 2007, with the responsibilities of the Country Representative since July 2018. Zahangir's key responsibilities at WCS Bangladesh include leading research activities in waterways of the Sundarbans mangrove forest, interacting with local counterparts, and supporting the Senior International Advisor. Before joining WCS Bangladesh, Zahangir worked as coordinator and field researcher for the Project Sundarbans Tiger jointly conducted by Jahangirnagar University, Zoological Society of London and Save The Tiger Fund (National Fish and Wildlife Foundation) USA. He completed his PhD on the ecology and human use characteristics of freshwater dependent cetacean habitat in the Sundarbans of Bangladesh from Jahangirnagar University. He is also a life member of the Zoological Society of Bangladesh.
Elisabeth Fahrni Mansur
Senior Program Manager -  Education and Livelihoods
Elisabeth works to develop informative and culturally appropriate communication strategies and tools for connecting wildlife conservation with sustainable livelihoods. She organizes interactive conservation education and training programs and coordinates internships. Elisabeth interacts with national and international program partners and supports the WCS Bangladesh program in strategic program development, management and reporting.  Since moving to Bangladesh in 2002, Elisabeth has focused on studying various aspects of biodiversity and human interactions in the world's largest mangrove forest, the Sundarbans. Elisabeth has previously worked as a nature guide and professional wildlife photographer, and has co-authored and published several books and articles highlighting the wildlife and traditional human uses of the Sundarbans forest. As former CEO of The Guide Tours Ltd., a local nature tourism company in Bangladesh, she has invaluable experience in developing locally appropriate strategies for integrating ecotourism with wildlife conservation. Elisabeth’s seven years experience as an educator, teacher's trainer and principal in Switzerland has been especially beneficial for her current position. In 2008 she was selected as a Kinship Conservation Fellow and trained in market-based tools for conservation and leadership.
Masudur Rahman
Finance and Office Manager
Masudur Rahman (Saikat) has worked with WCS Bangladesh since 2011. Saikat first joined the WCS Bangladesh team as a volunteer interpreter and field assistant for dolphin surveys in the Sundarbans and in coastal waters. Prior to taking on his current role at WCS Bangladesh, Saikat also worked on photo-identification catalogs for bottlenose and humpback dolphins. Through his long-term involvement with WCS Bangladesh, Saikat has gained an in-depth understanding of all aspects of the Bangladesh program’s activities and has used his diversified experience to manage financial program requirements as well as supervise and coordinate administrative and office related matters. Saikat graduated from the University of Rajshahi and completed his MBA from the American International University Bangladesh in Dhaka.
Suprio Chakma
Program Manager - Marine Megafauna
Suprio has over 13 years of experience in wildlife research with expertise in research design and field surveys, especially large terrestrial mammal surveys and monitoring. Prior to his work with WCS Bangladesh, Suprio was the Assistant Coordinator at WildTeam, a Bangladeshi NGO working on tiger conservation. Suprio has also worked for the Bengal Tiger Conservation Activity (Bagh), a USAID funded project. He has extensive field experience in Sundarbans and the Chittagong Hill Tracts, bordering India and Myanmar. Suprio has also participated in a number of national and international workshops and received a number of professional trainings on wildlife study design and data analysis. Suprio received his PhD in Zoology (Wildlife) from the University of Dhaka for his work on the "Assessment of large mammals of the Chittagong Hill Tracts of Bangladesh with emphasis on tiger (Panthera tigris)." He has contributed several articles for the Encyclopedia of Flora and Fauna of Bangladesh and is a member of the IUCN-SSC Crocodile and Viper Specialist Groups.
Manzura Khan
Program Manager - Marine Protected Areas
Manzura completed her Bachelors degree with Honours in Fisheries from Khulna University and thereafter obtained her Masters degree in Aquaculture from the Bangladesh Agricultural University, Mymensingh. She went on to complete a second Masters degree in Fisheries Economics and Aquaculture Management from the University of Tromso in Norway, in collaboration with the Nha Trang University in Vietnam, through a collaborative NORAD scholarship. Prior to joining WCS, Manzura worked with a range of international organization including WorldFish, Solidaridad and GIZ. As Manager of the Marine Protected Area (MPA) Program, she works closely with Government agencies and local stakeholders for the identification, declaration and adaptive management of marine protected areas in Bangladesh.
Shamsunnahar Shanta
Program Coordinator - Marine Protected Areas
During her studies at Jagannath University in Dhaka, Shanta interned with WCS Bangladesh as interpreter for educational outreach programs and as field assistant on several occasions. Upon completing her Master of Science degree in Fisheries Science she joined WCS Bangladesh in 2017 as Coordinator for the Marine Protected Area (MPA) Program. Shanta also works closely with the Marine Megafauna Program team on improving legislative protection for sharks and rays, plans and conducts research and is responsible for communication with international experts as well as supporting the development of sustainable conservation finance mechanisms for MPAs in Bangladesh.
G M Masum Billah
Program Coordinator - Marine Megafauna
While completing his Bachelor of Science with Honors degree in Forestry and Wood Technology at Khulna University, Masum interned with WCS Bangladesh as a field and training assistant and interpreter for educational outreach programs. In 2017, Masum joined the WCS Bangladesh Program as Coastal Program Officer. In his current position as Marine Megafauna Coordinator, he provides technical and mentoring support to the members of the WCS Citizen Science Fishermen Safety Network and landing site data collectors in Bangladesh. This is done by preparing and updating manuals, communicating with collaborators at port and at sea, collating data recorded by informants and ensuring proper maintenance of the provided equipment. He also assists with other training and mentoring programs and contributes to information compilations for various ongoing studies.
Ashik Jahan Galib
Program Officer - Marine Protected Areas
Galib received a Masters degree in Zoology, specialising in wildlife and biodiversity conservation, from Jagannath University, Bangladesh. His academic research was focussed on the non-breeding winter ecology of shorebirds, in particular the Indian Skimmer. Galib’s primary research interest is community-based conservation. He works to find synergies between what he has studied and his wildlife research experience. Galib works on baseline field activities under the WCS Marine Protected Areas (MPA) Program and is responsible for all stakeholder consultations and relevant outreach activities.
Nadim Parves
Program Officer - Education and Livelihoods
Nadim is a passionate wildlife researcher. During his studies he initated the Bangladesh Chiropteran Diversity Assessment Project and conducted various studies on a variety of wildlife throughout the country. He volunteered with the Spoon-billed Sandpiper Conservation Project and worked as a Research Assistant at WildTeam in USAID's BAGH Activity Project. Nadim joined the WCS Bangladesh as a research assistant for the annual coastal marine megafauna survey in 2017. In his current role, as Education and Livelihoods Program Officer, he is currently in charge of an educational outreach program to improve compliance with fisheries regulations among Sundarbans fishers as well as other WCS-BD training and outreach activities. Nadim holds a Masters of Science in Wildlife and Biodiversity Conservation from Jagannath University in Bangladesh.

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