Washington, D.C. January 26, 2017. The National Whistleblower Center (NWC) announced today that it received a significant grant from The Wildcat Foundation. This grant will provide primary funding for the NWC’s Global Wildlife Whistleblower Program.  The NWC’s emerging Global Wildlife Whistleblower Program counters wildlife crime and promotes conservation by harnessing the power of whistleblower reward laws.

The Wildcat Foundation is the personal philanthropic foundation of U.S. investor David Bonderman. The Foundation focuses its efforts on establishing innovative programs both for protecting Africa’s severely threatened parks, and for combating widespread trafficking of wildlife contraband including elephant ivory and rhino horn.

Rodger Schlickeisen, who manages the foundation notes, “Wildcat has assisted the creation of a growing network of wildlife anti-trafficking projects now active in 14 African countries, the U.S. and Europe.  And we see the new whistleblower program, by providing substantial incentives in the form of large cash awards, as further expanding the network in Africa and to Asia. This in turn should greatly add to the network’s law enforcement results which already include the most and biggest trafficker arrests in Africa.”

This year, NWC was also announced a Grand Prize Winner in the Wildlife Crime Tech Challenge, an initiative of USAID in partnership with the National Geographic Society, the Smithsonian Institution, and TRAFFIC.

“Incentivizing whistleblowers will revolutionize the detection of wildlife trafficking.  Whistleblowers have played a key role in detecting securities fraud, foreign bribery and illegal offshore banking.  It is time to enlist whistleblowers in the life and death struggle to prevent the extinction of tigers, elephants, and rhinos.  Paying monetary rewards to whistleblowers—including non-U.S. citizens who reside in Africa and Asia—is the only realistic method to incentivize reporting and protect those who risk their jobs and lives to report illegal poaching and trafficking,” stated Stephen M. Kohn, Executive Director of the National Whistleblower Center.  “The Wildcat Foundation has shown courage and vision in supporting the wildlife whistleblower project,” Kohn added.

Learn about the National Whistleblower Center’s work to combat wildlife trafficking at www.whistleblowers.org/wildlife.

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