The Team

Dr. David Western

Chairman of the Board of ACC

Dr. David Western is a world re-known conservationist and ecologist. A former director of the Kenya Wildlife Service, he has wide experience in elephant conservation nationally and internationally.  He was chairman of the African Elephant Specialist Group, which plays a lead role in assessing the status of the elephants, recommending action and in disseminating up to date information.




Lucy Waruingi

Director of African Conservation Center

Lucy Waruingi has been responsible for the co-ordination and successful implementation of various grants at ACC over many years including ecological and socio-economic field surveys. She also has extensive experience in project management and in the co-ordination of multi stake-holder partnerships.




John Kamanga

Director of South Rift Association of Land Owners

John Kamanga has a background in rural development and has been involved in community development projects, including several community conservation initiatives across southern Kenya for over 10 years. Furthermore he is chairman of the Olkirimatian Group Ranch in the South Rift.


Peadar Brehony

Borderland Conservation Initiative Coordinator

Peadar Brehony grew up in East Africa (living in Tanzania, Uganda, Ethiopia, Sudan and Kenya) before going on to study a BSc. (Honours) degree in Zoology in University College Cork, Ireland and University of California Santa Barbara, USA. As Peadar followed his parents (rural development specialists) around East Africa, he lived and grew up amongst many rural communities throughout East Africa. Once he finished his degree, he went on to work in New Zealand, Australia and Gabon before returning to Kenya to work with the South Rift Association of Land Owners.


Borderland Elephant and Lion Conservation Initiative


Despite their importance to conservation, most national parks are too small and scattered to sustain large, wide-ranging herbivores and carnivores. Over the last 30 years, Kenya’s parks and reserves have lost half of their wildlife populations, about the same as countrywide losses. The same trend is also seen in parks across eastern and southern Africa.

The Kenya-Tanzania borderlands region supports some of the richest wildlife populations on earth through a network of national parks and reserves, as well as the pastoral lands that connect them. Conservation of the borderlands region is critical to the long-term viability of both elephant and lion metapopulations.

Elephants (Loxodonta Africana ) and lions (Panthera leo) are the largest herbivore and carnivore in Africa, are highly threatened and share a flagship role in conservation. Both species play keystone roles in ecosystem, are major tourist attractions, conservation flagships and species most often in conflict with farmers and herders. Conserving elephants and lions combats poaching, bolsters tourism, generates income for local communities maintains the diversity and integrity of ecosystems. However, pastoralists, eager to secure formal titles to ward off land grabbers, are carving up the areas around and between parks. The wave of subdivision is hastening the loss of wildlife and the isolation of parks. Additionally, the illegal slaughter of wildlife has recently escalated in northern Tanzania. Although wildlife protection agencies in Tanzania and Kenya have reacted to this threat in protected areas, most of the community lands in this region have had little or no protection.

African Conservation Centre (ACC) and the South Rift Association of Land Owners (SORALO), with the support of the Liz Claiborne Art Ortenberg Foundation have established the ‘Elephant and Lion Borderlands Conservation Initiative’. This initiative aims to establish viable, interconnected elephant and lion populations by strengthening community conservation capacity and generating jobs and income.

Many conservation organizations are already working with community occupying lands between the parks and reserves. The primary role of the Borderlands Initiative is to link up and conserve the large but scattered elephant and lion populations by forging collaboration between conservation bodies and communities.

The collaboration has already produced a common database and a borderlands base map for integrating partner organizations and given emergency funding to bolster community scouts in the most vulnerable elephant and lion areas. The network of scouts, researchers and government rangers will work together in mapping elephant and lion distributions and movements and combating poaching and human-wildlife conflict.

For more information, visit