Miguel A. Reynal
Miguel Reynal became actively involved in nature conservation following a personal tragedy. In 1978, he founded the Fundacion Vida Silvestre Argentina (FVSA) which today is the leading environmental non-governmental organization in Argentina and through-out the region. FVSA has an annual budget of more than US$1.5 million and a membership of 4,000 with chapters in major parts of the country. During his 12 years as Executive President, he has: saved the pampas deer, historically the most abundant mammal in the region, from extinction; discovered a rare bird, the spotted grebe, and saved it from extinction; established a network of private reserves including an 84,000-hectare private and state biological reserve and bird sanctuary in Buenos Aires; created a breeding station for the endangered pudu-pudu deer; developed courses on environmental education for primary school teachers (1,500 trained to date); undertaken continuous lobbying and advocacy on behalf of the environment; and organized ongoing nature safaris. In 1987, Mr. Reynal started Save the Forest, an international initiative designed for media advocacy and debt for nature swaps. He purchased three full-page ads in the New York Times indicating individuals most responsible for destructive environmental practices. In 1993, he founded, funded and became Executive Director (ad honorem) of Fundacion Ecos which organizes short courses, seminars and workshops for community leaders and decision makers in South America.