Save the Waterberg Rhino is a small grass roots organisation, working hard to protect and conserve rhinos in the Waterberg.

Coordinator

Kelly Abram is the Coordinator for Save the Waterberg Rhino. She has a Bachelor’s of Science in Environmental Geography and a Masters in Conservation Biology. Her master’s research was undertaken in Kenya looking at home ranges of black rhino, in Ol Pejeta Game Reserve. This experience developed a deep passion and commitment towards rhino conservation. Originally from the UK, Kelly moved to South Africa in 2004 and since then she developed a conservation volunteer program in the Waterberg, then became the Programme Coordinator for the UNESCO Waterberg Biosphere Reserve. After which she joined STWR in 2016 to re-join rhino conservation efforts in Africa. More generally, Kelly has over ten years of experience in the field of protected species research and conservation and is dedicated to understanding how wildlife and humans can co-exist.

Save the Waterberg Rhino Board

Anton Walker (Chairman) has been involved with conservation for his whole life, starting at the age of 16 running environmental education programmes on weekends and holidays. For the last three years he has served on the Board of Lapalala Wilderness School as a director. Previous to that he was an ex-offico director for Lapalala Wilderness School while he was at Lapalala Wilderness where he worked for a total of 21 years, the last 10 years as Managing Director. His academic qualifications are in wildlife management and he has a wealth of experience in rhino conservation from being involved with the first aerial survey of rhinos in Botswana in the 1980s to being part of the first private purchase of black rhino in South Africa for Lapalala Wilderness, where he was then involved in all areas of rhino management, capture, monitoring, field operations and security.  He has also co-authored two books on rhino with his father Clive. He has been involved with STWR since its inception in 2012 and became its Chair at the beginning of 2019.

Tessa Baber (Founder) has over 25 years experience in the tourism and wildlife industry having set up, from scratch, her own tourism lodges and business. After a tragedy in 2012, where she lost a rhino to poaching, she used her passion of working with people to tackle the issue and Tess founded Save The Waterberg Rhino in an attempt for collaborative action to bring all stakeholders together to protect rhino over the whole Waterberg region. STWR still remains the only rhino focused organisation based within the Waterberg.

Shaun McCartney is the CEO of Welgevonden Game Reserve in the Waterberg. This is a 36,000 ha private reserve with significant rhino population as well as having the big five and other species of conservation priority. The reserve is also a significant tourism destination with over 60 lodges and major employer of local people. Shaun’s background is in conservation and he has an MSc. in Environmental Management.  Some of his areas of expertise include corporate governance, risk management and needs analysis.

Dr André Uys is the General Manager of Marataba section of Marakele National Park (21,000 ha). As well as a qualified veterinarian he has managed Marataba for the past 10 years, also a significant reserve for rhino. Through Conservation Solutions he has been contracted by African Parks Network, Peace Parks Foundation, IFAW and others to reintroduce wildlife into new or depleted areas. Species have included lion, elephant and rhino.

Clive Walker Our Patron has been involved with rhino conservation and protection from the beginning when the Endangered Wildlife Trust in 1973 was founded. He also co-founded the Rhino & Elephant Foundation and the African Rhino Owners Association, and served on the IUCN African Rhino Specialist Group for close on 14 years. He served as a member of the South African Parks Board from 2000 to 2006. Clive along with his wife has successfully rescued and hand raised rhino orphans. 

Creating a vast area to keep rhino safe