The new head of Liberia’s Forestry Development Authority (FDA) is a TBA alumnus who laid the foundations for his career in conservation during a TBA field course in Tanzania (Amani) in 2009. Darlington Tuagben has been appointed Managing Director of the FDA, where he is now responsible for overseeing the sustainable management of forests and related natural resources for his country.
Leading of a team of deputies and technical managers, Darlington coordinates the integration of forestry conservation (biodiversity conservation), commercial forestry (revenue generation from forest resources) and community forestry (community participation and decision making in forest resource management). The guiding principle behind this integrated approach is to ensure long-term benefit for all Liberians, and the global community. In addition to this key managerial role, Darlington is also the principal representative of the President of Liberia at all forestry related events, both national and international.
Over the years, Darlington has been passionate about the sustainable management of Liberia’s natural resources. As a biodiversity conservationist, he has always pursued causes which ensure that valuable natural resources are managed sustainably. This is depicted by his continuous effort to establish more protected areas in Liberia as well as ascertaining that the existing ones receive the level of support required for proper management.
Darlington’s new position gives him even more opportunities to solicit and leverage support towards forest conservation in Liberia. Already, close to 30% of the country’s forests have been brought under a more effective form of conservation management as spelled out in the National Forestry Reform Law of 2006. In his new job, he also hopes to develop a more science/research based Forestry Development Authority through building a strong scientific research department.
Darlington says the TBA was a key factor in launching and supporting his path to having real impact in conservation in his country:
“Since my interaction with the TBA, my life has never been the same as my capacity has been built to serve my country and the globe. A TBA field course is a stepping stone to greater heights in the world of sustainable natural resource management. Let’s maximise this opportunity. Thank you to TBA for being there for me.”