Our Experts

Gavin Edwards

 / ©: WWF-Hong Kong
Gavin Edwards, Conservation Director
© WWF-Hong Kong
Conservation Director
Gavin Edwards joined WWF-Hong Kong in 2013 as the Director of Conservation, bringing his almost 20 years of environmental advocacy and conservation experience to the organization. Before joining WWF, he was the head of Greenpeace’s global Climate and Energy Campaign, developing Greenpeace’s worldwide strategy advocating solutions to climate change. Gavin has also led successful campaigns on forest conservation in Canada, the Amazon and Indonesia.

At WWF-Hong Kong, Gavin directs a wide array of conservation, footprint and climate-related programmes, from sustainable seafood, shark and environmental watchdog programmes and low-carbon initiatives, to local and regional wetland conservation programmes. His vision is to ensure Hong Kong is Asia's leading city in sustainability, creating conservation impact locally, regionally and globally.

He recently obtained an Executive MBA from the Kellogg School of Management in Chicago and the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology. He spends his weekends hiking the trails and peaks of Lantau Island.

Nicole Wong

 / ©: WWF-Hong Kong
Nicole Wong
© WWF-Hong Kong
Director, Education
Nicole Wong joined WWF in 1999 as Education Officer at Mai Po Marshes and Wildlife Education Centre to lead the development of school wetland education programmes. She was in charge of a number of resource materials produced by WWF that were widely used by schools and education institutes in Hong Kong and South China. Her proudest work in education includes developing the multiplier training programme for local and East Asia educators and nature reserve staff, helping to set up the Wetland Link International, Asia to link up all wetland centres in the Asia region, assisting in the establishment of Hoi Ha Marine Life Centre and the development of innovative marine education programmes. After nearly eight years working in the field to implement the Learning in the environment programme, Nicole took the role of Assistant Director, Education in 2008 to lead the development of the education programme for both local and Asia Pacific regions. Her past experience includes working on education publications and youth development programmes. Nicole has a BA (Hons) in Geography from the Hong Kong Baptist University. 

C.W. Cheung

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CW Cheung
© WWF-Hong Kong
Head, Footprint Programme
C.W. Cheung joined WWF-Hong Kong in 2010 as the Head of Footprint Programme. A chartered engineer with an MBA from the City University of Hong Kong, C.W. brings 20 years of experience in the commercial sector with him to WWF. C.W. is a former senior executive, having worked in many listed companies and international conglomerates based in Hong Kong. Before joining WWF, he was the executive director of a multinational company. C.W. also has 13 years of part-time teaching experience, including teaching university MBA courses. At WWF, C.W. is responsible for all footprint-related programmes, including sustainable seafood, sharks, bluefin tuna, sustainable timber and paper, green wedding and producing the Hong Kong Ecological Footprint Report. He develops and implements various public and corporate engagement programmes which involve a range of supply chain stakeholders. These programmes are aimed at getting these stakeholders to commit to actions that have significant positive and long-lasting impacts on the environment. C.W. helps companies embrace the concept of addressing and reducing their corporate footprints into their strategic and operational plans. He is able to use his previous experience to advise companies how to fulfill their corporate social responsibility using integrated environmental, economical and social pathways.

Dr Michael Lau

 / ©: WWF-Hong Kong
Dr Michael Lau
© WWF-Hong Kong
Senior Head of Local Biodiversity and Regional Wetlands Programme
Dr Michael Lau re-joined WWF-Hong Kong in 2011 as the Senior Head of Local Biodiversity and Regional Wetlands Programme. From an early age, Michael had a keen interest in wildlife, particularly in reptiles and amphibians. After graduating from university, he worked for WWF-Hong Kong at Mai Po Nature Reserve from 1987 to 1991. He was the Reserve Manager when he left to pursue Ph.D. research at the University of Hong Kong (HKU) on the habitat use of Hong Kong amphibians and the conservation of endemic Romer's Tree Frog.

During his time at HKU, he also took part in the Hong Kong Biodiversity Survey and was in charge of the terrestrial vertebrates survey. After completing his Ph.D., Michael joined another local green group and led a forest conservation programme in southern China, while continuing to work on biodiversity projects in Hong Kong.

Michael is a member of several IUCN Species Survival Commission specialist groups and helped with the Red List assessment. Currently, he is responsible for WWF’s Local Biodiversity and Regional Wetlands programme, working with the teams to ensure that development projects will not affect Hong Kong’s unique terrestrial and marine biodiversity, to proactively conserve and manage threatened species and habitats, including Mai Po Nature Reserve, to advocate a holistic conservation policy, and to strengthen the conservation of migratory waterbirds along the East Asian-Australasian Flyway.

Mathew Cheng

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Mathew Cheng
© WWF-Hong Kong
Mai Po Centre Manager
Mathew Cheng joined WWF in 2008 as a Centre Manager for the Mai Po Nature Reserve, reporting to the Director of Conservation. He is responsible for formulating the Reserve's strategic direction, managing the public visit programme and facilities, and developing strategic partnerships with different stakeholders including the government, donors, NGOs, academics, interest groups and experts for the use of the Reserve's facilities to promote conservation of the Deep Bay wetlands. Mathew also leads on the climate change impact study on Mai Po and Inner Deep Bay area. As a certified facility manager, he has studied building surveying at University of Paisley in Scotland and building conservation at the Department of Architecture, University of Hong Kong. His previous experience involved working as general manager at the Hong Kong Youth Hostels Association, building manager at the Hong Kong Productivity Council and facilities manager at the Kadoorie Farm and Botanic Garden. 

Yamme Leung

 / ©: WWF-Hong Kong
Yamme Leung
© WWF-Hong Kong
Education Manager
Yamme Leung joined WWF in 2001 as Assistant Education Officer. He has an extensive background of experience in nature conservation education and education for sustainable development (ESD), with target audiences including students and teachers groups, both locally and from South China region. In 2006 he received a Master of Science in Environmental Management from the University of Hong Kong. At WWF, he has overseen the development, implementation and evaluation of school education programmes carried out at all the WWF centres. He has also worked closely with the South China Wetland team to develop and monitor the educational work conducted in the South China region – in particular those in Guangdong and Fujian Provinces. His work has also involved collaborating with a variety of external parties such as the Education Bureau of HKSAR Government, educational institutes and organisations, private sectors such as corporations, foundations and other working partners to initiate the development of diverse ESD programmes or activities, which are closely tied in with current primary and secondary school curriculums.

Bena Smith

Bena Smith / ©: Bena Smith
Bena Smith
© Bena Smith
Conservation Manager, Regional Wetland Projects
 Bena Smith joined WWF in 2004. Educated in the UK, he acquired his BSc. in Environmental Sciences from the University of Southampton, and MSc. in Conservation Management from the University of East Anglia with a research focus on boreal forest fire ecology.

Prior to joining WWF, he worked in several UK Environmental NGO’s managing a wide spectrum of natural habitats for endangered flora and fauna, and carried out species research and monitoring. He also carried out primate studies and rainforest research for a West African based NGO. At WWF he formerly led the ecological research work at the internationally renowned Mai Po Nature Reserve, then as Reserve Manager managed and designed wetland habitats at the Reserve particularly for migratory waterbirds.

Bena now works on regional projects to conserve migratory waterbirds in the East Asian-Australasian Flyway. He represents WWF on the Partnership for the East Asian-Australasian Flyway, is a member of the Shorebird Working Group within the Partnership, and a member of The Asia-Pacific Working Group on Migratory Waterbirds and Avian Influenza. He presents at regional symposiums and lectures at local Universities on the topic of wetland and waterbird conservation.

Dr Xianji Wen

 / ©: WWF-Hong Kong
Dr Xianji Wen
© WWF-Hong Kong
Conservation Manager, South China Wetlands
Xianji Wen joined WWF in 2001. He is now leading the wetland management training programme at Mai Po Nature Reserve, as well as conservation and wise use of wetlands in South China. He has various skills and experience related to wetland conservation, including management planning, protected area design, habitat management, environmental education and community participation among others. Xianji trained in zoological research during his graduate studies, and worked in Yunnan Province in China for more than 10 years. He led a number of research projects there, covering taxonomy, evolution, behaviours and conservation of wild birds and their habitats, and has been author and co-author of many scientific papers and several books.