Cat joined IFAW in 2023 with a decade of experience working in environmental policy, having spent the last five years focused on delivering policy changes at the international level through sensitive diplomacy, successful relationship-building, and respectful negotiating at various multilateral environmental forums.
Cat most recently served as Head of Marine Species Conservation at the UK government’s Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra). In that role, she frequently collaborated with governments, industry, and NGOs domestically and internationally to drive forward ambitious policy priorities to champion the conservation of marine species. This included work in a number of international agreements, such as the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Flora and Fauna (CITES), the Convention on Migratory Species (CMS), and the International Whaling Commission (IWC). During her time at Defra, Cat was alternate commissioner for the UK to IWC, Chair of its Conservation Committee, and co-Chair of its Working Group on Operational Effectiveness. She was also lead negotiator for the UK on marine issues at CITES, where she worked closely with IFAW and other NGO colleagues on securing the successful listing of nearly 100 shark species to Appendix II in 2022.
Cat leads IFAW’s International Policy programme, which supports collective policy decisions made by governments at a global level and helps make sure they lead to national action that allow animals and people to thrive. Through the International Policy programme, IFAW engages with global environmental agreements, including the UN biodiversity conventions: Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD), CITES, and the CMS; the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN); and international marine policy initiatives, such as the International Whaling Commission (IWC).
Cat’s experience brings to IFAW a wealth of understanding of the operations and processes of many international agreements with which IFAW interacts and a strong network of professional contacts across a range of governments around the world. She is a passionate advocate for conservation and has a BSc in Zoology and Master's in Ecology, Evolution, and Conservation.
Head of Marine Species Conservation, Defra
Senior Policy Advisor, International Fisheries, Marine Species Conservation and Marine Protected Areas, Defra
Renewable energy programs, Ofgem
Master's of Ecology, Evolution and Conservation, Imperial College London (London, England)
Bachelor's of Biology and Zoology, Swansea University (Swansea, Wales)