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On January 19th, the International Conservation Caucus Foundation (ICCF) hosted its U.S. Congressional International Conservation Inauguration Gala honoring extraordinary leadership in international conservation. The Gala was Chaired by Theodore “Ted” Roosevelt IV and was Co-Chaired by Bo Derek, Luciana & Robert Duvall, and Ian Somerhalder.

Guests at the Inauguration Gala included Members of Congress, diplomats, world business leaders, and leaders from the international NGO community. Conservation leaders Mateus Mutemba and Greg Carr of the Gorongosa Restoration Project and Julia Miranda Londoño, Director General of National Parks of Colombia, were presented with ICCF’s “Good Steward” Award in recognition of their outstanding personal commitment to conservation. Joel Holtrop, former Deputy Chief of the U.S. Forest Service and ICCF International Conservation Corps expert, addressed the audience about ICCF’s on-the-ground programs to support park managers around the world by sharing U.S. and Canadian conservation expertise.

Julia Miranda Londoño was presented with ICCF’s “Good Steward” Award for her work as Director General of the National Parks of Colombia. Dr. Miranda has served as Director General of the National Parks of Colombia, a system which currently includes 59 protected areas. Ten (10) new parks have been added under her stewardship.

Click here to read the full text of Dr. Miranda's speech.

Greg Carr and Mateus Mutemba of Gorongosa National Park and the Gorongosa Restoration Project were presented with ICCF’s “Good Steward” Award for their leadership to restore Gorongosa National Park. Greg Carr is the President of the Gorongosa Restoration Project in Mozambique, having signed a 20-year agreement with the Government of Mozambique in 2008 to restore and co-manage Gorongosa National Park. Mateus Mutemba has served as Park Warden of Gorongosa National Park since 2011, after joining the Gorongosa Restoration Project in January 2008. Under their leadership, the Gorongosa management team has reintroduced buffaloes, wildebeests, and other species to the ecosystem, planted more than one million trees in the Mt. Gorongosa rainforest, and created the E.O. Wilson Laboratory.

Watch highlight's from this year's gala below:

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