Ms. Woo joined The Asia Foundation in Mongolia in September 2010 as director for the environmental conservation program. She was responsible for Engaging Stakeholders in Environmental Conservation (ESEC), an initiative that encourages responsible resource use and environmental conservation in the development of Mongolia’s mineral sector. The highly-integrated program’s core elements include: knowledge building; environmental advocacy; civic engagement; private-public partnerships; water resource management; and environmental education.
As director, Ms. Woo was responsible for overseeing, evaluating, monitoring and reporting on the program. With a program team of seven local staff, she conceives and implements strategies that advance the program’s goals while ensuring the sustainability of its achievements. To this end, the program works with multiple partners and stakeholders at the local level; cooperates with numerous government ministries and agencies; and coordinates with other international organizations to build capacity for assessment, advocacy and action on mining-related issues. Cross-learning and coordination with the Foundation’s other country and thematic programs—in particular governance—is an important aspect.
Previously, Ms. Woo worked with the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) as a regional coordinator for policy advocacy and disaster management in Asia. Based in Bangkok for five years, she collaborated with development and humanitarian agencies to reduce risk for vulnerable communities and valuable ecosystems in disaster-prone areas. Ms. Woo managed a project team based in southern Thailand, initiated an eight-party regional working group on disaster-environment linkages; and brought on-the-ground experiences to global forums on climate change and biodiversity. An earlier initiative on regional wildlife trade resulted in a ground-breaking agreement in 2004 to improve monitoring and enforcement among the ten Southeast Asian countries.
Ms. Woo began her career as an intern with Mobil Oil Canada, spending four months at a remotely-located gas plant and another four with the Environment, Health and Safety Department at its headquarters. Prior to earning her post-graduate degree, she developed a compendium of biodiversity-related initiatives for the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA); and facilitated state-of-environment and climate change reporting with the United Nations Environment Program (UNEP) in Norway.
Born and raised in western Canada, Ms. Woo has worked and studied in Asia since 2002 (primarily in China, Mongolia, Thailand and Vietnam); and resided in Europe for four years.
Education: MSc Environmental Sustainability from the University of Edinburgh, United Kingdom (2002); BSc Earth Sciences from the University of Calgary, Canada and the University of Lancaster, United Kingdom (1998). Continual study of Mandarin Chinese and French.
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