(NEW YORK - November 23, 2015) - WCS (Wildlife conservation Society) announced today that Irma Hermawati and Musir Riswan of WCS’s Indonesia Program have both been honored with a Conservation Hero Award from the Disney Conservation Fund. The award recognizes local citizens for their efforts to protect wildlife and wild places, and to engage communities in conservation.
Recipients from around the world were nominated by nonprofit environmental organizations, and each honoree and his or her nominating organization will share a $1,500 award from the fund.
Irma Hermawati is a lawyer by training and currently serves as the coordinator and legal advisor to WCS’s Wildlife Crimes Unit in Indonesia where she is dedicated to combating the illegal wildlife trade. To date, she has assisted in more than 150 cases regarding tiger, elephant, and primate trafficking, and has succeeded in increasing the rate of wildlife crime prosecution by 75 percent in Indonesia. Her work has led to a demonstrable reduction in illegal wildlife trafficking.
Musir Riswan works with the WCS’s Wildlife Response Unit, helping communities manage conflicts with wildlife. He pioneered the use of a 'tiger-proof enclosure,’ designed to keep livestock safe from tigers and reduce the incidence of tigers entering villages. Musir also teaches community members to safely respond to conflicts with wildlife. His efforts are helping to conserve the unique and endangered species of Sumatra while also protecting communities that call the forests home.
“I express my appreciation to WCS for the recommendation and Disney Fund for this award. This award will encourage me to fight more for wildlife existence,” said Irma Hermawati. “Thank you to Disney for this award and I hope it can motivate us to enhance our performance to preserve our nature – since that is our collective responsibility,” added Musir Riswan.
The Disney Conservation Fund focuses on protecting wildlife and connecting kids and families with nature. Since 2004, Disney has honored more than 100 Conservation Heroes from around the world for their extraordinary conservation efforts.
“Thank you to the Disney Fund for recognizing these two outstanding individuals with this honor,“ said WCS Executive Vice President of Conservation and Science John Robinson. "Each in their own way continues to demonstrate how conservation can make a positive difference to both wildlife and people. WCS is proud to have these worthy recipients of the Disney Conservation Hero Award on its staff and thankful for the work they do.”
For information on Disney’s commitment to conserve nature and a complete list of 2015 Conservation Hero Award recipients, visit Disney.com/Conservation.