Minnows © Michel Roggo

Mike Baltzer, Executive Director

Mike is a conservation biologist with over 30 years of experience in Asia, Africa and Europe. He started his career undertaking and leading biological inventory expeditions in Uganda, Vietnam and Indonesia. He since specialised in leading large, complex, multi-country focused conservation programmes. For more than 18 years, he worked for WWF as the Conservation Director for their Greater Mekong Programme, Director of the Danube-Carpathian Programme and was for nine years the Lead for their global tiger programme, Tigers Alive. Mike left WWF in 2018 to launch a new partnership he conceived and founded focused on freshwater fish, SHOAL.

Michael Edmondstone, Communications and Engagement Lead

Michael has worked in a variety of communications roles over the past 15 years, including as a journalist on an English language Tanzanian weekly broadsheet, and marketing manager in a large multinational media agency. After spending the best part of a decade working in the corporate sector, he joined an environmental NGO as a communications officer, where he felt his professional background would be more effective at making a positive difference to the challenges the natural world faces. His diverse skillset is well suited to working with a small, ambitious team like SHOAL’s, where an agile and adaptable attitude is needed to ensure all communications opportunities can be grasped. 

Dr. Harmony Patricio, Conservation Programme Manager

Dr. Harmony Patricio leads the development and roll-out of SHOAL in the U.S. and manages freshwater fish conservation programs, in partnership with Re:wild and the IUCN SSC Freshwater Fish Specialist Group. Harmony has over 13 years of experience in conservation research, practice, and policy. She specialises in freshwater biodiversity, and has worked in Australia, Central America, Southeast Asia, and the U.S. She spent six years designing and implementing freshwater fish conservation programmes in the Mekong River Basin, in close collaboration with rural fishing communities, and established the Mekong Fish Network. Her Ph.D. research focused on the development of novel environmental DNA methods to assess river biodiversity and determine distributions of rare fishes, including the critically endangered Mekong giant catfish. Harmony serves on the Freshwater Conservation Committee and Freshwater Fish Specialist Group of the IUCN Species Survival Commission. She is also the Co-Chair of the Freshwater Specialist Group for the IUCN World Commission on Protected Areas.