Wild Europe attains foundation status

A pan European remit for the Foundation

As of 2nd February 2022 Wild Europe is designated as a Stichting, registered in the Netherlands

Our objectives remain unchanged, although our new structure will significantly enhance our ability to secure these across a broad range of activities. While we are based in the European Union, our remit will still cover the whole of Europe: from Ireland in the West to the Urals and Caucasus in the East.

The Foundation will be chaired by Erika Stanciu, former Secretary of State for Forests in the Romanian government and President of Europarc Federation, now Vice Chair of WCPA for Europe. She is also founder / director of Propark Foundation, providing training and consultancy services, and Coordinator for Wild Europe’s Wilderness Working Group.

Other trustees include:

  • Cyril Kormos, Vice Chair WCPA global, founder-director of Wild Heritage and formerly with WILD (US) and Conservation International
  • Erik Balaz, Chairman of the Aevis Foundation, Director of Arolla Films and forest ecology specialist
  • Gernant Magnin (Foundation Secretary), consultant. Formerly with WWF Netherlands, and previously Director of Eurosite and WWF Turkey
  • Ladislav Miko, former Director of Natural Environment at DG Environment, and Environment Minister in the Czech government, now lead environment advisor to the forthcoming Czech EU Presidency

Management of Wild Europe

The executive of Wild Europe will continue to be run by Toby Aykroyd (Foundation Director and trustee), with a background including economic development (UNDP), enterprise management and lobbying alongside conservation. He is also trustee of European Nature Trust, Rewilding Britain, WFUK and Fundatia Conservation Carpathia (Romania). He is partnered by Zoltan Kun, Head of Conservation, member of the IUCN Rewilding Thematic Working Group and IUCN Primary Forest Task Force, and representing the Griffith Primary Forest programme (Wild Europe is a partner) together with PFPI, former director of PAN Parks Foundation operating in 12 European countries. Helena Akerlund and Kevin Martin continue in their roles of website and IT support respectively.

Our registered office will be in the IUCN building at Plantage Middenlaan 2K, 1018DD Amsterdam.  

Overall Structure

The ethos of collective decision taking that has underwritten Wild Europe’s operations will continue. The Executive Committee will be renamed the Consultative Group, still comprised of some 35 organisations and individuals, to provide ongoing input of objectives and activities. An Advisory Group will be established, covering a range of specialisms, and including representation from land user and other associations; it will provide ad hoc technical advice and enable exchange of views – helping identify the common ground between sectoral interests that also underpins Wild Europe’s work.

The long journey from Brexit

Creation of the Wild Europe Stichting has finally established a proper process following the upheaval caused by the Brexit Referendum in 2016, when Wild Europe was on the verge of attaining legal designation in the UK, then part of the European Union. Extensive consultation with partners on the future format for Wild Europe had already been undertaken by that time, and the 2022 Stichting echoes closely the recommendations resulting.