Rikkert Reijnen’s career began in the Netherlands, where he worked to protect exotic species across the country.
As Public Affairs Coordinator for AAP, he led a campaign to ban wild animals in Dutch circuses and other entertainment venues. He also advocated for a national “positive list” that specified the particular animals people could keep as pets. Both of those campaigns were successful.
Still, Rikkert knew that improving animal welfare required more than just changing laws within the Netherlands. It also had to include stronger wildlife crime protections in an animal’s home country, and better laws against wildlife trafficking in every country that animal went.
So, in 2008, Rikkert joined IFAW. And he has been working to improve the lives of exotic animals in Africa and Europe ever since.
Today, Rikkert works with governments and partners around the globe to develop strategies that will minimize wildlife poaching and trafficking, as well as projects to reduce the demand for wildlife.
Rikkert also serves as the Chair of the Board of Directors for the Moroccan Primate Conservation Foundation—an organization dedicated to protecting Morocco’s endangered Barbary macaque population.
Senior Project Lead, Wildlife Crime and Elephants, IFAW The Netherlands
Public Affairs Coordinate, IFAW The Netherlands
Chair of the Board, Moroccan Primate Conservation Foundation Morocco
Public Affairs Coordinator, AAP The Netherlands
Doctor and Master of Science, Social Psychology and Marketing Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, the Netherlands