Dr. Jess


Country Scientist, Mozambique and Zimbabwe

Dr. Jess Williams, a marine conservation expert, led the initial setup of Akashinga into Mozambique and assumed the role of Country Scientist in both Mozambique and Zimbabwe since August 2022. She is a member of the IUCN Marine Turtle Specialist Group (MTSG) and holds a Doctorate in Marine Conservation Biology. In 2012, she founded Tartarugas para o Amanhã (TPA), an organization focusing on marine megafauna ecology, fisheries management, and marine education.

Dr. Williams excels at identifying socio-economic factors driving the use of aquatic bushmeat and illegal marine wildlife trade. Her mixed skillset make her well suited for our Mozambique project area which requires a mix of social and ecological skills sets for effective conservation management of our area which is both land- and seascapes.

Her work includes leading CITES assessments on sea turtle status in Mozambique and Madagascar, impacting conservation policies. Her journey from leading the Coutada 5 project to Chief Scientist exemplifies her unwavering commitment to integrating academic conservation knowledge in an applied ‘boots on the ground’ approach to guide our efforts in Mozambique.


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