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Executive Committee

The ERF is managed by an elected (volunteer) Executive Committee comprising:

President: Urs Reif
I was born 25.09.1980 in Germany. After doing some travelling after finishing my civil-work, I decided to study biology with focus on ecology and nature conservation. I did my studies in Marburg at the working group of Prof. Plachter how is known in nature conservation and was vice president of the WCPA.

After studying I worked in 2 agencies for nature conservation assessments. When in 2014 the Black Forest National park was established I got a job there as chief ranger. My duty was to establish and build up the ranger system in the new national park.

In 2015 I began helping in working groups of the German ranger association concerning international exchange and working groups. Our park was strongly supporting the new establishment of the ERF for which we organized a workshop in 2015, which was the baseline for the new establishment.


©Archiv Umweltakademie: Foto Thomas Niedermüller

©Archiv Umweltakademie

Vice-President: Ilan Yeger
Ilan has worked at the Israel Nature and Parks Authority (INPA) since 1991. Ilan is head of the operation and anti poaching department in the law enforcement division. Among his previous positions at the Nature and Parks Authority: regional nature conservation ranger in the Carmel Nature Park and researcher and coordinator of investigations at Green Patrol. 

Since 2017 Ilan managed to lead a few international projects for the International and the European Ranger Federation (ERF): the Twinning project with the German ranger association, an international anti poaching course for rangers from all over Europe in 2019 and an anti poaching webinar programme he created in 2021. 

All programmes could be successfully realized because of the good cooperation with rangers from the ERF.

Treasurer: João Correia
I am 51 years old and I have been a park ranger since 1998.

I am currently secretary of the Portuguese Ranger Association (APGVN) and one of the auditors of the ERF accounts. I was treasurer of the IRF between 2009 and 2012.

I was the representative of the Portuguese ranger association in: Park ranger training in Brazil, WRC in Bolivia and Tanzania; ERC in Croatia and the Czech Republic. I have attended national Ranger events in Croatia; Denmark; Switzerland and Israel.

Secretary: Artenisa Peçulaj
I graduated in Environmental Biology in 2014, and since then I have been working in different aspects of the management and promotion of Protected Areas. 

Being engaged since 2015 in the National Agency of Protected Areas in the Project Sector gave the opportunity to know more the situation of Protected Areas in Albania, the challenges and also the strong aspects that need to be more focus in establishing a good management standard of Protected Areas in Albania.

It was in 2017 when the Albanian National Parks Association was redesigned as a NGO with the aim to sustain and represent the Albanian Rangers in the ERF and IRF. It all started as an inspiration from the meeting of rangers held in Czech Republic in May 2017, and after that I have been mainly engaged in supporting ANPA in different project and especially in the project of Twining Programs signed among Swiss Rangers Association and ANPA.

Training Officer: Michael Großmann

I have been working as a ranger in the Bavarian Forest National Park since 1990. Since 2012, I am head of the ranger team from the Bavarian Forest National Park. 

Besides I am continuously involved in the work of the German Ranger Association as well as of the European Ranger Association and have been committed to their creation and success from the very beginning. 

For many years I have also been pushing the topics of fundraising and professional training for rangers all over Europe. I focus on the funding of ERF training activities and financial resources so that rangers in need of support can participate in our educational programs. 

©Daniela Blöchinger

Project Officer: Maia Tsignadze

My passion for nature starts from my childhood. I was grown up in a small Georgian village Shalauri near the forest, where my grandfather fortified the edge of the gorge with trees and I was taught to take care of every tree as it served the safety of people. Later on, I went on the family traditions and arranged windscreens and landslide zones in my neighborhood and planted 300 trees.

In 2014 I joined the Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources Protection of Georgia. It was a good possibility to realize the actual challenges and start working on some independent projects. I coordinated the Forum of Protected Areas Friend Associations, started networking with several international and local organizations. In 2019 I founded Georgian Ranger Association, organized study tours for rangers and participated in several international projects.

Releasing Colchic Pheasant in nature, promoting junior ranger programs at schools, establishing and strengthening eco clubs, creating sealed micro ecosystems, training the court judges working on the environmental trials, planting trees and making windfills are the projects I am currently working on.

I submit all my passion towards the nature and the people protecting it.  I am proud that I managed to mark Georgia on the European map and I am sure I will create wonderful projects to protect our precious nature, promote our brave rangers and save the planet!