The Secretariat oversees the day-to-day activities and decisions at Plan Vivo. They are the key point of contact for any prospective projects, current projects, or individuals with an interest in Plan Vivo. 


Keith Bohannon – Chief Executive Officer 

 Keith has over 20 years’ experience in management roles across the Private Sector, Third Sector and in International Development. He specialises in Rural Community Development and worked for over ten years on sustainable livelihood projects across southern Africa. He heads up the Secretariat, reports to the BoT and is responsible for the development and implementation of the Foundation's strategy. Keith has an MSc in Africa and International Development, a PGDip in Business Administration, a BEng in Engineering and is a member of the IUCN Specialist Group on ‘Sustainable Use and Livelihoods’.




Eva Schoof – Programme & Regional Strategies Manager

Eva Schoof Plan Vivo

Eva graduated from the University of Edinburgh with an MSc in Environment and Development, where she specialised in environmental governance and natural resource management. Before joining Plan Vivo in 2015, Eva worked on a bio-ethanol project in Panama, where she focused on project and grant management, technical support and communications. Her other previous posts include digital marketing and public relations in the private sector. Eva is fluent in English, German and Spanish.



Luke Howard – Technical Coordinator 

Before joining Plan Vivo in January 2019, Luke graduated from the University of Edinburgh with an MSc in Environmental Protection & Management. During this degree, he focused primarily on environmental and conservation policy. Prior to this, Luke graduated with a Biological Sciences BA from the University of Oxford, where he specialised in ecology and conservation. He has also undertaken biological/environmental research in various countries, including Brazil, Morocco, Indonesia and the UK.




Caroline Stillman – Capacity Strengthening Coordinator

Caroline Stillman Plan Vivo

Caroline holds an MSc in International Development from the University of Edinburgh, where their thesis research involved a collaboration with Triangle Project (the first LGBTQ organisation on the African continent) on access to gender affirming healthcare in South Africa. Caroline also holds a BSc in Physics, where they modelled the physics of the climate. Caroline is committed to strengthening projects' capacity and enabling more projects to access equitable carbon finance and is passionate about ensuring that marginalised groups are at the centre of development and conservation. Caroline has experience in Tanzania and Kenya.



Evie Ward – Blue Carbon Coordinator



Evie graduated with an MSc in Marine Conservation from the University of Plymouth, where she specialised in conservation policy. With a strong interest in blue carbon ecosystems, her thesis involved research into mangrove restoration and was undertaken in collaboration with an international conservation organisation. Prior to this, Evie graduated from the University of Nottingham with a BSc in Natural Sciences. Evie has also volunteered with organisations around the world, including in Malaysia, Mexico, Nicaragua, and the UK.



Chelsea Inglis – Technical Officer 

Chelsea holds an MSc in Sustainable Development from the University of St Andrews. Her thesis explored the schism between export-focused aquaculture and food security in Tanzania. Chelsea obtained a BA in Political Science from Arcadia University in Philadelphia where she studied the contrasting approaches to development by Western and Eastern states. From 2017 to 2019 she volunteered with the Peace Corps in Togo supporting community needs in the forms of education, grant applications, income generation, improved agriculture, and organisation operations. 



Diana Wrangham – Media & Communications Coordinator


Diana is an MSc graduate in Environmental Change and International Development. Having previously worked in the travel and tourism sector, she has been fortunate to visit various remote destinations around the world. For her MSc thesis she collaborated with a Jordanian NGO that represent local Bedouin communities and work to protect their customary land rights. Diana also holds a BA in English Literature, Media and Communications and is passionate about sharing local people's stories and generating wider awareness around climate change.



Brian Oronoz - Carbon Markets Consultant

Brian has 7 years of professional experience in the fields of carbon pricing, environmental consultancy, sustainable finance, and banking. He has collaborated on projects funded by the UNFCCC, The World Bank, GIZ, and the UK government, mostly in Latin America and the Caribbean, working alongside public and private stakeholders, international organisations, and NGOs. Brian graduated from The University of Edinburgh with an MSc in Ecological Economics, holds a postgraduate degree in Environmental and Ecological Economics, and a BSc in International Business Administration. 



Marleen Salomons – ACORN Coordinator  



Marleen has over 15 years' experience in the private sector, working in roles as product manager, partner coordinator and analyst. Key areas of experience include stakeholder relationships, process improvements, and project management. Marleen has an MA in International Relations from Dublin City University and a BSc in International Development Studies from Wageningen University, where she specialised in Economics and Rural Development. 




Carrie Kretzer -  Operations Manager

Carrie has over a decade of experience in operations management. After a short career as a circus performer, she began to focus on youth programme development within the recreational art and sport industry. The core of her work focused on knowledge management and internal process development. Before moving to Edinburgh she worked across the globe from California to New Zealand managing circus schools and therapeutic performance organisations. She has an MSc in Sport Policy and International Development and a BA in Art History and Anthropology. 



 Toral Shah - Biodiversity Coordinator 

Toral recently completed a PhD in Life Sciences with Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew and Imperial College, London. She conducted in-depth fieldwork in Tanzania to better understand the poorly known taxa, ecology, threats, and conservation status of the plant family Ochnaceae and particularly the genus Ochna. Prior to this she worked as a Curator-Botanist at Kew Gardens. She holds an MSc in Plant Diversity from the University of Reading, where her research project focussed on assessing the conservation status through indicator species in the Chimanimani Mountains, Mozambique. Toral was born in Kenya and is passionate about conservation, particularly in Africa. She is fluent in English and Swahili.



Hamish McGill – Projects Officer 

Hamish graduated with a BSc in Animal and Conservation Biology from Edinburgh Napier University. For his BSc thesis he collaborated with the Plan Vivo certified Vanga Blue Forest project, conducting research into the ecological restoration of a degraded mangrove site in Kenya. Before joining Plan Vivo in October 2022, Hamish interned for several months as a Junior Projects Officer, where he focused primarily on developing content for the Blue Carbon Hub.




 Aishwarya Katakam – Projects Officer

  Aishwarya holds an MSc in Global Environment, Politics and Society from the University of Edinburgh, where she focused on understanding the environmental actors and the social impacts of their action. For her dissertation, she worked with an environmental consultancy to analyse corporate decarbonisation action since the Paris Agreement, focusing on carbon pledges. Aishwarya also holds a bachelors in Economics and one in Management, and an MBA from India where she focused on a varied scope of understanding corporate strategy and the political economy. She has also worked with different corporates and NGOs in the environmental, fashion and healthcare sectors.



Harry Tittensor – Projects Officer

  In 2021, Harry returned to the UK after a decade away in Colombia. He holds an MSc in Environmental Protection and Management from Edinburgh University and a MA in Global Diplomacy from SOAS University. Prior to Plan Vivo, Harry worked with the British Council Bogota and several Colombian Universities. His passion for conservation was stoked through extensive periods in Colombian regions bordering the Amazon, including Caqueta, Guaviare and Putumayo. He speaks both English and Spanish. Outside of work he regularly bike packs and explores the Scottish countryside.   



Elena Llorente – Validation & Verification Coordinator  

  Elena has over 17 years' experience in climate change and carbon markets with international experience mainly in Latin America, Asia and Africa. She specialises in forest carbon and worked for over sixteen years as a Lead Carbon auditor for projects across Latin America and Asia beneath different international carbon standards. Before working in a VVB, she worked at the United Nations, collaborating in the United Nations Commission on Sustainable Development (CSD - 14). Elena has an MSc in Environment and Quality Management and holds a degree in Environmental Sciences. 



Cecilia Corcoran – Finance Officer

Cecilia joined Plan Vivo Foundation in August 2020 and supports the team on the day to day management of the finances and budgets. With a background in administration and finance, Cecilia, having worked in the third sector for over 30 years, has gained experience of both local, national and international voluntary organisations from a range of thematic areas and now enjoys being part of the continuing growth of Plan Vivo. 




Lilian Mwihaki Mugi – Regional Projects Officer (East Africa)

  Lilian has been actively involved in research in blue carbon ecosystems, people, and climate for the past decade. She is highly experienced in mangrove ecology and the engagement of communities in nature-based solutions, and significantly contributes to mangrove research, policy and community development in her country and the Western Indian Ocean region. She holds an MSc (Environmental Science) and BSc (Natural Resources Management) from Egerton University and is currently pursuing a PhD (Marine Ecology) at Edinburgh Napier University. Outside of work, she enjoys family time and engaging children in activities in her local church. Lilian is based in Kenya.



 Helena Barona - Regional Projects Officer (Latin America) 


Helena has a long experience in the VCM market from a project perspective through her previous work with AMBIO, based in Mexico. She has participated in various development projects in Mexico related to sustainability, migration, healthy housing, disaster risk and people’s vulnerability by working with regional governments in the Southern part of Mexico and with UN Agencies (ILO, ACNUR and WHO). Helena has a Bachelors degree in Science of Communications, a Masters in Development and Management Studies, and has trained in the US in International Public Policies and Project Management. Helena is based in Chiapas, Mexico.



Kristin Olsen – Development Consultant


Kristin has worked in the environment and development sectors for more than 20 years. Her career spans conservation and community forestry in Vietnam, Cameroon, Uzbekistan and Scotland and 7 years working as a monitoring and evaluation advisor to the Sustainable Development Investment Portfolio in South Asia. Within this role, she supported organisations in their work on regional water, energy and food security, and in mainstreaming gender and social inclusion. She has worked with UN agencies, governments, NGOs, CSOs and academic institutions. Kristin is supporting Plan Vivo in its strategic growth and development. She has an MSc in Forestry and speaks Norwegian and French.



Douglas Hill – Development Consultant


Douglas has been involved with Plan Vivo in a voluntary capacity since March 2020, helping projects evidence SDGs as well as working with the Secretariat and key partners on priorities ahead of COP26. In 2003, following teaching placement in Nepal, he established Room to Read as the U.K. registered charity and has served on the Board of Trustees since. He has over twenty years of Finance and Operations experience in the private sector. He holds a BA in Economics and is a qualified accountant (CIMA).




Board of Trustees

All amendments to the Standards must be approved by the Plan Vivo Foundation’s Board of Trustees. Their expertise includes forest ecology, conservation, environmental management, international development, business administration, finance, climate change, environmental sustainability, bio-energy and project management. On average, the Board of Trustees meets between six and eight times annually.

Julian Gayfer – Chair

Julian Gayfer is a management consultant with a background in NRM. In his role as Director of IOD Parc, based in Edinburgh (UK), he is currently Project Director of the Joint Evaluation of the Paris Declaration. Julian's career has otherwise focused on strengthening the M&E function and Performance Management Systems of bilateral agencies including DFID, AusAid and SDC. This work has also included an evaluation of the decentralisation of the African Development Bank. Prior to this, Julian was an Advisor and Programme Manager with DFID, working primarily in the area of rural livelihoods and the environment.


Charles Henderson

Charles is a partner in ERM's climate change team, with 23 years of experience providing a range of corporates with advisory and technical services to optimise their low-carbon strategies, including carbon neutral and net zero initiatives. He has been involved in the voluntary carbon markets since the early 2000s, including roles at Natural Capital Partners and South Pole, leading project developers/retailers. He has also helped deliver community development projects in Africa and Europe on agroforestry, climate adaptation and nutrition.


Emily Fripp

Emily is the Managing Director of Efeca and has worked for 19 years in the field of natural resource economics, specialising in sustainable use and the trade of natural resources (particularly agricultural commodities, ecosystem services, timber and other related forest products). This includes: Supporting policy dialogue (EU Timber Regulation, FLEGT Action Plan and REDD+); monitoring impacts on trade patterns and markets; working with private sector, communities and local governments; and managing complex global programmes. Emily joined the Board in March 2014.

Pauline Nantongo Kalunda

Pauline Nantongo Kalunda is the Executive Director of ECOTRUST, a leading Ugandan NGO specializing in conservation financing. Her role in spearheading stakeholder engagement using rights-based and pro-poor approaches has won her several awards including as one of Uganda’s leading women in conservation. Among her several achievements, Pauline has successfully established a commercially viable REDD++ scheme - Trees for Global Benefit (TGB) that links smallholders to the voluntary carbon market. TGB won the 2013 SEED Award for its innovation and entrepreneurship, its promising efforts to promote economic growth, social development and environmental protection in Uganda, and the potential of its partnership to inspire others.


Stephen Porter

Stephen Porter is a researcher, educator, and investor. Previously, as a Chartered Financial Analyst, Stephen held senior roles in global asset manager and investment consultancies. This included serving as Vice President of Franklin Templeton Investments, and as a research analyst for Russell Investments and Standard & Poor’s. His attention shifted to environmental development when studying for a PhD in atmospheric and environmental sciences at the University of Edinburgh. During this time, he was also the Managing Director of Natura Capital and taught on the Carbon Management MSc at the same university.



Technical Advisory Committee

The Technical Advisory Committee (TAC) works closely with the Foundation to support the approval of technical specifications and provide guidance on technical matters. Specific functions of the Technical Advisory Committee are to:

  • Provide recommendations on technical aspects in the Plan Vivo Standard and how they should be applied
  • Contribute to the development of tools and methodologies to support Plan Vivo projects

Plan Vivo's TAC were previously responsible for reviewing technical documents from existing and potential Plan Vivo projects. It should be noted that this is now done by the Technical Review Panel (TRP). 

Nicholas Berry – Chair

Dr Nicholas Berry is a Partner at The Landscapes and Livelihoods Group (TLLG) - an organisation he helped establish to support Plan Vivo projects and other community-led natural resource management initiatives. He specialises in assessment and monitoring of carbon, biodiversity and ecosystem services and has worked in more than 20 countries throughout Africa, Southeast Asia, and Latin America. Nick has been involved with Plan Vivo since 2008, providing technical support to projects and developing methodologies for assessment of climate benefits from forest protection, agroforestry and climate-smart agriculture. He has contributed to the revision of the Standard in 2013 and 2022.


Blanca Bernal

Dr Blanca Bernal, currently working at GreenCollar, is a wetland biogeochemist, experienced in carbon accounting and calculation of emission factors associated with land use and land use change. She has investigated carbon sequestration strategies for climate change mitigation, terrestrial and aquatic ecosystem response to environmental change, nutrient cycling in aquatic and terrestrial ecosystems, and the implications of environmental impacts on ecosystem services. Blanca has been involved with Plan Vivo since 2015, and is particularly interested in contributing to strengthen mechanisms that foster conservation and restoration of forests and blue carbon ecosystems.


Charlotte Wheeler

Dr Charlotte Wheeler is a postdoctoral researcher at the University of Cambridge working with the Cambridge Centre for Carbon Credits. Charlottes expertise is in the field of tropical forest restoration, specialising in carbon and biodiversity monitoring of forest restoration projects, having conducted research in restoration projects in Malaysia, Uganda and Mexico. She is also experienced in mapping changes in forest biomass, linked to degradation and land-use change, using remote sensing techniques. Charlotte is particularly interested in understanding the global climate change mitigation potential of forest restoration, and how restoration-planning decisions influence carbon sequestration.


Florian Reimer

Florian Reimer is currently the Head of Ecosystem Services at Lestari Capital – a social enterprise focused on mobilizing private sector funds for forest restoration & protection by integrating private sector markets and conservation. Since 2011 he has co-developed projects under various forest carbon standards, including most recently Plan Vivo. Coming from a background of remote sensing & GIS, Florian focused initially on land use GHG accounting before branching into wider project development, management and blended finance. He is working actively on Insetting projects related to land use supply chains of major multinational companies and their climate targets, especially in South East Asia.


George Tarus

George is forestry and climate change expert with over 14 years’ experience. He holds an M.Sc. in Natural Resource Management and M.Sc. in Climate Change and pursuing PhD in Natural Resource Management. George works for Kenya Forest Service and member of Green House Gas Inventory (GHG), REDD+ and Forest and Landscape restoration technical working groups in Kenya. He also chairs the Scientific Committee of Forestry Society of Kenya, Certified expert on Environmental Impact Assessment and Audit and UNFCCC FULO and REDD+. In addition to being a TAC member for Plan Vivo, he is a part of the Forest Innovation Working Group of the VERRA Group.


Jenny Farmer

Jenny is a researcher with Newcastle University and an environmental consultant, with 15 years of diverse experience working on the dynamics of land use and land use change, ecosystem service provision, community-based natural resource management and carbon market opportunities. She has a strong history of work in Uganda, where she co-founded the Uganda Carbon Bureau in 2006 and more recently Bubugo Conservation Trust in 2015, and has worked extensively in the country's environmental sector. She has particular expertise in the measurement and modelling of soil carbon and greenhouse gas emissions from land use change in tropical peatlands, which she studied for her PhD and in post-doctoral positions.


Klaus Geiger

Klaus is the Manager for Nature Based Solutions in North America at South Pole, a global carbon project developer and climate solutions company. Klaus is a forester whose work with the carbon market and certification began in 2016 auditing voluntary forest carbon projects globally with Rainforest Alliance and later forest management certification across the US under Forest Stewardship Council with Preferred By Nature. While at The Nature Conservancy, he worked with landowners to sustainably manage their forestlands as part of their Working Woodlands program. Klaus served in the Peace Corps (Panama '09-'12), has a Masters of Forest Management from the Yale School of the Environment, and a Bachelors of Forest Science from University of Missouri-Columbia. Klaus is fluent in English and Spanish.


Martin Kaonga

Dr Martin Kaonga is a terrestrial carbon biogeochemist, experienced in carbon auditing and calculation of emission factors associated with land use and land use change. He has investigated carbon dynamics in tropical land use systems. He has extensive experience in NBS/NCS project development and delivery to Plan Vivo, VCS, CCBS, TREES and JNR. Martin has provided technical oversight of six multi-country NBS/NCS programmes (over 40 projects) in 23 countries. He has been involved with Plan Vivo for over 10 years as a member of the Plan Vivo Technical Advisory Group (TAG). Martin is particularly interested in emission reductions through NBS/NCS.


Peter Branney

Peter Branney is a freelance consultant with over 30 years of experience in forestry, specialising in community forestry and forest management planning. He has worked in 22 countries (particularly in South Asia), where he has: Facilitated workshops; planned and supported donor-funded programmes; carried out training; prepared manuals; conducted participatory research; and prepared reviews, studies and reports. Through this work, he has advised DFID, World Bank, EU, GTZ, KfW, FAO, UNDP, SDC, SNV, Intercooperation, Helvetas, RECOFTC, Birdlife International, IIED and other International NGOs, consultancy companies and organisations.



Saran Sohi


Dr Saran Sohi is a researcher working on the function of soils in agriculture and forestry. He is motivated by the question of how limited resources can support more productive yet sustainable agriculture, forestry and horticulture. He co-founded the UK Biochar Research Centre in 2009 and subsequently initiated the MSc course "Novel Strategies for Carbon Storage in Soil". Saran has 25 years of research experience and over 90 published papers. His research priority is to unearth predictive understanding for biochar function in soil, drawing on established knowledge of soil processes and carbon turnover.


Suraj Vannairachchy

Suraj Vanniarachchy, currently working at Natural Capital Partners, has over 12 years of experience in nature-based project development and stakeholder engagement in Sri Lanka, Myanmar, Thailand, Laos, Indonesia, Oman, Ethiopia, Kenya, and Mexico. He holds a special passion for developing forest carbon projects that address social, environmental, and economic development. Suraj is familiarised with the latest climate policy development and global trends and is specialized in identifying carbon financing options for low carbon activities at the project and jurisdictional level. He is actively engaged in assisting community-led conservation and restoration of mangroves, sea-grass meadows, and kelp forests.




Technical Review Panel (TRP)


The Plan Vivo Technical Review Panel (TRP) consists of experts in carbon quantification with its aim being to accelerate the finance to community-focused Agriculture, Forestry and Other Land Use (AFOLU) carbon projects. The TRP help ensure that projects and their associated methodologies are meeting best practice within the voluntary carbon market, giving confidence to investors and the wider market. If you are interested in joining the TRP, please see our careers page.