The People

The Orangutan Conservancy


Norm Rosen


Board of Directors

Raffaella Commitante Raff photo
Juanita KempeJuanita photo
Anne RussonAnne photo
Robert ShumakerRob photo

Barbara Shaw

Linda Keenan

Director of Development
Tom Mills

Juanita Kempe

Emeritus Board
Roger Nelson
Shirley Randolph
Michael Sowards
Wayne Sowards

Board of Director Bios

Anne E. Russon is a Professor of Psychology at Glendon College, York University, Toronto.  Since 1989, she has conducted scientific research on orangutan intelligence and behavior in the forests of Indonesian Borneo.  She has served as a scientific advisor for several orangutan documentaries and orangutan support organizations (e.g., Alchemy Films, New Zealand Natural History Unit; Borneo Orangutan Survival Foundation–Indonesia, Orangutan Conservancy-USA) and is the Executive Director of the Borneo Orangutan Society of Canada.  Since 2009, she has been studying the behaviour of wild orangutans in Kutai National Park, E Kalimantan.

Dr. Rob Shumaker is an evolutionary biologist who specializes in the study of behavior and cognition. He has worked in the AZA (Association of Zoos and Aquariums) community for nearly 30 years.  Born and raised in the Washington D. C. metropolitan area, he started his career at the Smithsonian National Zoo as a volunteer animal keeper.  During his 20 year tenure there, Dr. Shumaker worked as an animal keeper, curator, biologist, exhibit designer, and scientist.  He spent several years at the Great Ape Trust in Des Moines, Iowa as the senior scientist supervising all research with orangutans.  In 2010 he moved to the Indianapolis Zoo and currently serves as the VP of Conservation and Life Sciences. Dr. Shumaker has been a faculty member at George Mason University and Drake University, and an affiliate faculty member at Iowa State University. Currently, he is an external research associate at the Krasnow Institute, and an adjunct professor at Indiana University.  Dr. Shumaker has authored or co-authored numerous scientific publications, books, and articles for the popular press.  His work has been featured in such media outlets as National Geographic, NPR, the Discovery Channel, Animal Planet, PBS, and the BBC. Dr. Shumaker has authored or co-authored numerous scientific publications, books, and articles for the popular press.  Dr. Shumaker serves on the science advisory board of the Balikpapan Orangutan Society (BOS) which is based in Indonesia, in the same capacity for BOS Canada in Toronto, and as a board member of the Orangutan Conservancy, based in the United States. He is internationally recognized as an expert on orangutan behavior and cognition.


Honorary Patrons

Jane Goodall, PhD, CBE, has studied chimpanzees for more than 40 years and is credited with popularizing the modern notion of “conservation.” In 1977 she founded the Jane Goodall Institute (JGI) to conserve primate habitat; foster positive relationships among people, the environment, and animals; and promote activities that ensure the well-being of chimpanzees and other animals, both wild and in captivity. Among her many books are In the Shadow of Man (1971) and A Reason for Hope: A Spiritual Journey (1999).

Edward O. Wilson, PhD, is the author of two Pulitzer Prize-winning books, On Human Nature (1978) and The Ants (1990) and is the recipient of the 1977 National Medal of Science, the Gold Medal of the Worldwide Fund for Nature (1990) and the Audubon Medal of the National Audubon Society (1995).  He serves on the Board of Directors of the Nature Conservancy, Conservation International, and the American Museum of Natural History.

Djamaludin Suryohadikusumo is the former Minister of Forestry in Indonesia who established many protective regulations and enforced them. He continues his conservation and protection efforts today by serving as a patron of the BOSF in Indonesia and by serving with the Gibbon Foundation. He was instrumental in detaching the Mawas region from the production forest designation.

Suwanna B. Gauntlett played a pivotal role in founding WildAid, an animal welfare and conservation group that is widely regarded as one of the most effective in Asia. A lifelong environmentalist, Gauntlett has dedicated her life to saving wildlife and forests. Gauntlett helped support the highly acclaimed ‘Operation Amba’ program that brought the Siberian tiger back from the brink of extinction in the mid-90’s, and founded the Gauntlett Group LLC, an environmental consulting firm dedicated to helping corporations including Nike, Pfizer and Alcoa Fujicoa to reduce pollution in operations worldwide.