The Tusk Award for Conservation in Africa has announced this year’s finalists as the awards enter their 10th year of celebrating African conservation leaders.

The Tusk Conservation Awards, in partnership with Ninety One, raise the profile of conservation leaders and their significant impact on wildlife and communities across Africa.

Announcing the shortlist for the 2022 Tusk Award for Conservation in Africa, Charlie Mayhew, CEO of Tusk said: “The threat to Africa’s wildlife and wider biodiversity remains real and urgent. With the devastating economic impact of COVID-19 still being felt across Africa, this year’s finalists for the Tusk Award provide a beacon of hope as the continent’s emerging leaders in conservation, working tirelessly on the front line to protect Africa’s extraordinary natural heritage. To mark the 10th year of these prestigious awards, we are excited to use the opportunity to bring together previous awards alumni with this year’s finalists.”

The shortlist for the prestigious Tusk Award for Conservation in Africa, presented in partnership with Land Rover, includes:

1. David Daballen, Samburu Operations Director at Save The Elephants (Kenya)

David is an ambassador and warrior for elephants. During the past 20 years, he’s been involved in more than 100 collaring operations and can identify 500 individuals.

“We have to carry the mantle to the next generation. What really gives me hope is there are so many vibrant Kenyans interested in conservation coming up behind me. That is my driving force and my strength.” – David Daballen

2. Dismas Partalala Ole Meitaya: Ujamaa Community Resource Team (UCRT) and Programme Co-ordinator – Yaeda & Lake Eyasi – Tanzania

Dismas is a grassroots conservationist, who helps indigenous communities secure their rights over their lands and natural resources, define conservation from their cultural perspective, and build a durable system of land and wildlife protection on that foundation.

In his role as a programme coordinator for Ujamaa Community Resource Team, the 48-year-old self-taught conservationist has been instrumental in securing land rights for the local Hadzabe community, with 100,500 hectares of land secured by law since 2011.

“When I discovered these communities needed help, I knew I had to be the one. If I do this, then I can I die knowing I did something in this world.” – Dismas Partalala

3. Miguel Goncalves: Park Warden – National Administration for Conservation Areas, Mozambique

Miguel has worked within the Maputo National Park since 1999, becoming Park Warden in 2008. Under Miguel’s leadership across the last 12 years, the park has changed dramatically from a free-for-all hunting ground to a landscape able to support thriving populations of wildlife and recovering ecosystems, both in the ocean and on land. His drive and passion, combined with a deep knowledge of his local area, has enabled him to become a leader and advocate for community conservation and education across borders and cultures.

“I believe in the work that I do passionately. I can see the difference the team has made over the last 12 years and the impact we have had on the surrounding communities, who are our foremost partners in the landscape.” – Miguel Goncalves

The winner of The Tusk Award for Conservation in Africa award will be announced at the ceremony, alongside the presentation of the annual Prince William Award for Conservation, sponsored by Ninety One and the Tusk Wildlife Ranger Award, sponsored by the Nick Maughan Foundation.

The Tusk Conservation Awards are made possible thanks to the support of co-sponsors: ISPS Handa, DHL, Maia & Fortemus Films, Mantis Group, Patrick Mavros, EJF Philanthropies, Justerini & Brooks, Accor and Shelton Fleming.