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Career conservationist with global experience charged with developing a community of leaders dedicated to applying market-based principles to environmental issues.

CHICAGO, IL, July 10, 2006 --/WORLD-WIRE/--
Kinship Conservation Fellows announced today the appointment of James Tolisano as their new Director. Tolisano will be responsible for leading the Kinship Foundation's innovative fellowship program for mid-career conservation professionals. Each year, Kinship brings together approximately 18 Fellows from around the world to participate in a month-long program of practical, hands-on training in leadership skills, business and economic principles, and conservation project development.

Kinship Foundation director Karie Thomson offered her perspective on Tolisano's qualifications: "Jim's experience as an educator and a mentor, as well as his extensive fieldwork in the international conservation arena, make him a perfect fit for Kinship Conservation Fellows. The creativity and big picture thinking he brings will inspire our Fellows, and his wealth of practical experience using market-based principles will help us move this program forward as a top conservation leadership institute."

Tolisano is a New York based eco-development and natural resource management specialist who has worked on conservation projects in 32 countries on five different continents. Over the past 25 years he has worked with a diverse mix of conservation organizations, government agencies, indigenous and tribal communities, and private businesses to design, implement and evaluate conservation and development projects that address issues of forest and watershed management, natural resource planning, environmental impact analysis and biodiversity conservation.

From 1995-2003, Tolisano served as an Associate Professor of Conservation Science at the College of Santa Fe, where he co-developed an innovative undergraduate program integrating the arts, social sciences and conservation biology, and directed a conservation education outreach program for teachers and educators throughout New Mexico.

"I began my career working as a wildlife biologist and forest ecologist," said Tolisano. "But I learned long ago that we have to find ways to successfully address economic needs in order for conservation to endure. I emphasize the linkage between good science, strong local participation and innovative economic development in all of my project work."

According to Tolisano: "People step up and assume leadership roles once they gain the self-confidence to take on certain challenges, Self-confidence comes when a person has the tools and skills to act. The Kinship Conservation Fellows program is essential to building a community of leaders with the self-confidence to apply market and economic solutions to real world conservation issues."

In 2006, Kinship Conservation Fellows became the new name for the groundbreaking program that launched in 2001 as the Kinship Conservation Institute. The name change to "Kinship Conservation Fellows" reflects a renewed vision to develop a community of conservation leaders-the Fellows at the heart of Kinship. With Tolisano's leadership, Kinship Conservation Fellows is poised to pursue its mission of developing a community of leaders dedicated to applying market-based principles to environmental issues.

For more information about Kinship Conservation Fellows visit

Renee Michaels
(847) 714-1702

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