“Bonjour. Salaam aleikum. Buenos días. And hello.
Today marks the moment that we've all been waiting for for so long. The opening of the World Conservation Congress, both in-person in beautiful Marseille, or virtually from all over the world. But in person or virtually, we've all pledged to participate, to engage, to vote. Because not only do we carry IUCN, its mission, its vision, and its promise in our hearts and in our minds, but because this is truly a moment in history where we must bring conservation in the mainstream of the sustainability agendas. Where we must democratize the science and art of conservation by making it accessible for all. Now is the time for IUCN to really reassert itself and its influence on the global stage and bring back this grand vision of the Union, the one that we all signed up for.
If elected, I will be the second woman to lead the Union in its 75-year history and its first president from West Asia. I know firsthand that a diversity of voices equals strength. Should I be elected, I will endeavor to build a more diverse and more inclusive, and a more proactive IUCN. A Union by the members, for the members. One that acts with both a sense of urgency and purpose that this moment demands and future requires.
As president, I will bring two decades of diverse conservation experience both from the public and private sectors. And I have come to understand the challenges facing the Union through my 20-year engagement with the IUCN as a member, as a framework donor, and a strong supporter to the SSC. And I will endeavor to bring a fresh and energetic perspective to address those challenges.
We all agree that the time for procrastination is over and that we must be bold, we must be fast and we must innovate. Armed with the optimism and the humility of the heart, we can ensure that IUCN is a more effective advocate for nature conservation, and I have no doubt that we will succeed together. For nature needs us and we need nature.
Please remember to cast your vote wherever you may be. Thank you again for your consideration. Thank you for your support. Speaking to you throughout the campaign has truly been an honor of a lifetime.”