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ESO executive director wins Nat Geo Wayfinder Award

8 Jun 2024 ESO executive director wins Nat Geo Wayfinder Award By OUR CORRESPONDENT

Muscat – Suaad al Harthi, Executive Director of Environment Society of Oman (ESO), has been honoured with the prestigious National Geographic Society 2024 Wayfinder Award.

She is among 15 newly named National Geographic Explorers to receive the award for advocating the protection of Oman’s marine and terrestrial biodiversity through research, education and awareness raising initiatives.

“Humbled and honoured to share that I have received the National Geographic Society Wayfinder Award and am joining its global National Geographic Explorer community,” Suaad posted on LinkedIn.

Wayfinder Award recipients are individuals who have proven themselves to be the next generation of influential leaders, communicators and innovators, she added, “whose critical work inspires the world to learn about, care for and protect the wonder of our world”.

Speaking about her interest in National Geographic, Suaad reminisced, “I remember the huge collection of National Geographic magazines that were in my cousin’s room and I used to go up there and flip through the pages fascinated by the photographs and articles from around the world. I never imaged that I would one day become a Nat Geo Explorer.”

She thanked everyone who has contributed to this accomplishment, especially “my family and friends, and current and past mentors and colleagues at ESO and Environment Agency – Abu Dhabi”.

Hon Amor al Matani, Chairman of ESO, congratulated Suaad for the award and contributing “to protecting Mother Nature”.

“Your passion, dedication and advocacy for the cause of conservation in creating a more sustainable future for many generations are exemplary and worth all the recognition of your work. Keep innovating; the world needs more of you,” said Hon Matani.

From an indigenous ecologist working to restore the American bison on tribal lands to a photographer telling the critical stories of polar research, the 2024 recipients are recognised for pushing the boundaries in science, conservation, education technology and storytelling – all to propel society’s mission forward of illuminating and protecting the wonder of planet Earth.

“These individuals have proven themselves as the next generation of influential leaders and innovators, and we are thrilled to recognise them for their groundbreaking work across a diverse range of impact-driven projects,” said Alex Moen, Chief Explorer Engagement Officer of National Geographic Society.

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