Chair's Corner: CEC Newsletter September 2011

Keith Wheeler, CEC Chair, announces the end of his term and invites CEC members to participate in the nomination of a new Chair. In this newsletter, 46 new stories showcase the remarkable range of actions by CEC members in all parts of the world.

Keith Wheeler, Chair of IUCN's Commission on Education and Communication

As many of you know, my term as CEC Chair comes to an end after the next IUCN World Conservation Congress. The terms of Commission Chairs and Council members are limited to two terms and, I note with regret, my allotted time concludes in September 2012.

I am deeply honored to have been the Chair of CEC, standing on the “shoulders of giants”, Denise Hamú and Frits Hesselink, who have actively counseled me over the past two terms. It has been so important to have a strong Steering Committee and active partners as my Deputy Chair over the past six years – Ana Puyol, Juanita Castaño and Wendy Goldstein. I am also very thankful to have worked with two excellent IUCN Director Generals – Julia Marton-Lefèvre and Achim Steiner. I have had the privilege of working with invaluable focal points and staff on a day-to-day basis, including Wendy Goldstein, Corli Pretorius, Gillian Martin Mehers, Rod Abson and, especially, Cecilia Nizzola-Tabja. Thank you all for helping me strengthen CEC and its role within IUCN.

It is time to nominate the next CEC Chair. I am encouraging candidates from around the globe to step forward for this challenging volunteer position. The world is changing rapidly in areas that will be central to IUCN’s work in 2013-2016, and the CEC mandate will be key to creating the impact envisioned in the new IUCN One Programme. The next Chair needs recognized leadership not only in the traditional fields of strategic communication and learning but, more importantly, in the areas of Change Management, Knowledge Management and Social Media Management.

Today, CEC has grown to nearly 1000 members from around the globe. We are playing an active role in all areas of work within IUCN and engaging with other Commissions and IUCN members. This has been one of the most challenging but rewarding volunteer assignments that I have ever taken, and I remain deeply honored that the Commission members have placed their trust in me over these past years to lead this great body. I will not be leaving the Commission or IUCN and, like my predecessors, I will actively engage with the next Chair providing advice and support where needed. I hope to see many of you in Jeju during the CEC members meeting, where we will celebrate our accomplishments and look to how we can improve the Commission to meet the challenges ahead. Meanwhile, I am working with CEC leaders to chart the course of the Commission in its next four-year strategic plan and prepare for CEC participation at Congress. If CEC members would like to propose an event for the Congress Forum – a workshop, roundtable discussion, training course or exhibition – please see the instructions at

In this newsletter, I am pleased to showcase the remarkable range of actions by CEC members in all parts of the world. With best regards, and in anticipation of a productive and exciting year to come,

Keith Wheeler, CEC Chair

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