Seema Paul

Managing Director, The Nature Conservancy India

Seema Paul, Managing Director of The Nature Conservancy India, is passionate about making a difference to the future of people and the planet. As an entrepreneurial executive, she has translated concepts into organizations and program strategies into impactful public policies in energy, climate change and ecosystems conservation. She has worked across philanthropies, intergovernmental organizations, NGOs and media; and has managed program portfolios totalling more than $120 million over her career. Before joining The Nature Conservancy, Seema was the Vice President at Climate Works Foundation and Founder CEO of Shakti Sustainable Energy Foundation, a non-profit dedicated to advancing climate mitigation in India. She has also served as Program Director for Biodiversity at Ted Turner’s United Nations Foundation. An alumna of St. Stephen’s College, New Delhi, University of Maryland, U.S., and INSEAD, France, Seema is passionate about leading non-profit start-ups, setting vision and implementing strategy. She lives in New Delhi with her two daughters and travels frequently across India and around the world for work and pleasure. In her free time, she likes to read and explore nature and history through books, site visits and collecting vintage memorabilia. She has a passion for the arts.

Kunal Sharma

Director of Programmes

Kunal Sharma oversees The Nature Conservancy India’s conservation portfolio and leads the programme teams by providing strategic guidance to conservation goals and objectives. Before joining The Nature Conservancy, he was head of the Climate Policy Programme at the Shakti Sustainable Energy Foundation. In his eight years with Shakti, he led the development of the programme’s grant portfolio and provided strategic guidance on numerous projects spanning low carbon development, mitigation of short-lived climate pollutants and air quality management. Kunal managed working relationships with officials at several Ministries and State Government Departments. His previous professional experience includes working at Abt Associates in Cambridge, Massachusetts, U.S., where he contributed to several analytic assessments in support of EPA regulations and initiatives. He also has six years of experience in the private sector. Kunal graduated from Yale University with a dual Master’s in Environmental Studies and Economics. He holds an undergraduate degree in Economics from Hindu College, Delhi University. In his free time, Kunal likes to play field hockey, go on hikes, and try out new recipes in the kitchen.

Robin Gusain

Director of Finance & Operations

Robin Gusain is a qualified Chartered Accountant, Company Secretary and MBA (Finance) with more than 14 years of experience in finance, internal audit, management reporting, grants and risk management functions. At The Nature Conservancy India, he oversees Finance, Legal, Human Resources and Operations. He played a key role in ensuring The Nature Conservancy was legally registered in India. In the past, he has served as the Finance Director at Room to Read for two years and an Internal Auditor at the Aga Khan Foundation for six years. Robin has extensive experience in handling matters relating to regulatory compliance with respect to Income Tax Act, FCRA, Companies Act, Accounting Standards and more. He has also successfully monitored and executed long-term projects funded by international organizations, agencies and donors such as the European Commission, CIDA, DFID, USAID and UNICEF. Robin is a committed father to two daughters and plans to devote his retirement to a brighter tomorrow for the next generation of girls in India.

Aditi Khurana

Manager, Partnerships

Aditi Khurana is a management graduate as well as a qualified homoeopathic doctor with over eight years of work experience in the private and development sector. She specialises in business development and fundraising. She leads The Nature Conservancy’s fundraising efforts in India with a focus on corporates, HNIs and foundations. Before joining The Nature Conservancy, Aditi worked with Doctors Without Borders India where she was responsible for leading the Major Donor Fundraising channel. She started her career with Yes Bank Ltd., a private Indian Bank, after completing her post-graduation in Management in 2010. She is passionate about dance and loves to spend her free time learning the French language and reading.

Anwesha Choudhuri

Fundraising Coordinator

Anwesha has over 6 years of experience in the development sector, with a focus on advocacy. She strongly believes in the power advocacy has in creating deep socio-political impact. Her strengths lie in operations and relationship development, and she has been an integral part of several development initiatives with stakeholders in Ministries, NGOs, as well as INGOs. At The Nature Conservancy – India, she works as the Fundraising Coordinator. Her previous professional experiences include working with NCPEDP, DPI, Saksham, Carleton University and Matrix Cellular International. Anwesha is very passionate about the environment and nature, especially since she graduated from Woodstock School, Mussoorie. She has an Undergraduate Degree in Psychology from Carleton University. Anwesha lives in New Delhi with her father, and loves to explore various eateries with friends and family in her free time. Additionally, whenever she gets the chance she loves to travel to the hills as she is at her happiest when in natural and peaceful environments.

Amit Pathak

Executive Assistant to MD

Amit Pathak is the Executive Assistant to the Managing Director of The Nature Conservancy India. He has over 20 years of experience in managing offices of executive leaders and administration management. He is an MBA with specialisation in Human Resources. He has worked in Shakti Sustainable Energy Foundation, where he managed the annual administration budget of Rs. 4.5 crore independently in addition to ably running the CEO’s Office. A proactive team member, he has worked with the NV Group of companies, where he was the Executive Assistant to the Founder Chairman and Managing Director. He has worked in public, private and social sectors, including organisations such as PricewaterhouseCoopers and Clinton HIV/AIDS Initiative. He is a nature lover and likes to travel to unexplored destinations in India.

Ashok Biswal

Project Associate, Narmada

Ashok Biswal is a passionate nature explorer and keen wildlife photographer who is rarely seen without a camera hanging from his neck. He enjoys capturing nature’s mysteries through his lens. He manages The Nature Conservancy India’s project on restoring River Narmada and is based out of the Divisional Commissioner’s office in Narmadapuram. He has travelled extensively in East India to research on flora, fauna and other conservation aspects of wetlands. These works are reflected in his three books – ‘Aquatic Plants of Eastern India’, ‘Glimpses of Biodiversity of Odisha’ and ‘Biological Diversity of Regional Plant Resources Center’. Ashok received his academic and professional training from the Wildlife Institute of India, Wildlife Conservation Society, Utkal University, Bharathiar University and Indian Institute of Forest Management. He is a field researcher at heart and spends any free time in the jungles exploring nature and capturing its beauty through photography.

Dhaval Negandhi

Ecological Economist

Dhaval Negandhi is an Ecological Economist with The Nature Conservancy’s India programme and supports all programme teams in conducting economic analyses for conservation projects. He currently manages the projects on Renewable Energy and Reforestation by Design and Restoring River Narmada in the Central Indian Landscape. An alumnus of the Indian Institute of Forest Management, Dhaval also worked with the Institute on issues related to ecosystem services, conservation finance and natural capital at the science-policy interface. He has been an integral part of research studies that have influenced national policies in India on forest and wildlife management including the Net Present Value of Forest Diversion in India, Forest Fiscal Federalism for the 14th Finance Commission of India and Economic Valuation of Tiger Reserves in India. He has a Master’s in Forestry Management from India and another Master’s in Environmental Science, Policy and Management from three universities across Europe. He is based out of Bhopal in Madhya Pradesh where he lives with his wife and two children. He is passionate about travelling and cricket and spends his free time playing with his son and daughter.

Divya Vohra

HR Manager

Divya is a seasoned HR professional who leads the Human Resources Function at The Nature Conservancy. Prior to joining The Nature Conservancy, Divya has over a decade of experience of working as a Human Resource Business Partner with organizations like SoftwareONE, Pitney Bowes and IBM. She believes in creating impact that enables positive change. She is a self-starter and has to her credit some of the most disruptive solutions for complex business problems. Her forte lies in recognizing opportunities and tapping them as prospects. She aspires to evolve the Human Resources function with her experience and firmly believes in innovating for collaboration. She is a music lover, amateur singer and has a penchant for travel. She also has a deep interest in nature and loves to keep a track of global nature conservation efforts and movements. Divya did her post-graduation in Human Resources from School of Inspired Leadership (SOIL) and graduated as an Electronics and Communication Engineer from Apeejay College of Engineering (MDU, Rohtak).

Manoj Singh

Project Head, Crop Residue Management

Manoj Singh is a post graduate in Agriculture with management background. He leads the crop residue management initiative of the Nature Conservancy in India. He is passionate and results driven professional having 18 years of strong experience in the agriculture sector. He has experience in project management, program designing and developing project strategies and action plans especially in the areas of resilient and conservation agriculture, community based adaptation systems, inclusive value chain development, economic empowerment, market research and analysis, agro and rural enterprise development and developing Knowledge, Monitoring, Learning and Evaluation (KMLE) systems. Before joining the Nature Conservancy, Manoj was National Project Coordinator in one of the largest Global Environment Facility-funded projects in the Food and Agriculture Organization of United Nations. He has worked across various development organizations, research institutions, and corporations in the area of agriculture and allied sectors such as Indian Agricultural Research Institute, GIZ, KPMG, Asian Development Bank, CARE India, etc. Manoj loves singing and passionate to work for nature. He also likes traveling to natural landscapes.

Nisha Priya Mani

Project Manager, Cities Programme

Nisha has over 13 years of experience in various fields of environment management with expertise in water quality and solid waste management, environmental planning, management and assessment, resource conservation and policies on mitigation and adaptation to climate change. She holds a Ph.D in Environmental Science from Anna University, Chennai. As the Project Manager for Cities programme, Nisha oversees the implementation of the project on restoring Chennai’s wetlands. She works closely with multiple stakeholders including the City, State and Central Government and project partners to ensure project delivery. In the past, she has offered consultancy services to various sectors such as thermal power plants, chemical industries and other developmental projects pertaining to environmental management, regulatory compliance and obtaining statutory environmental clearances. She also worked for the Government of India in its preparation for the historical COP 21 on ‘Paris Agreement on Climate Change’ during her stint in the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change (MoEFCC). Nisha loves spending time in nature and nurturing it all around her. She enjoys trekking, bird watching, photography and listening to upbeat music.

Roshni Arora

Applied Freshwater Scientist

Roshni Arora is a budding ecohydrologist with a keen interest in nature and environmental conservation. In the past, she has worked with the Wildlife Institute of India on environmental impact assessment and biodiversity conservation projects with a focus on water resources. She has a Joint PhD in River Science from the Freie Universität Berlin, Germany and University of Trento, Italy through the European Union’s Erasmus Mundus Joint Doctorate Program. She also has a Masters in Environmental Management from Forest Research Institute, Dehradun. After completing her PhD, she worked as a post-doctoral fellow at the Leibniz Institute of Freshwater Ecology and Inland Fisheries, Berlin, Germany. Her primary research interests lie in exploring the processes interlinking ecological and hydrological functioning of rivers and multiple stressor impacts on freshwater ecology. Most recently, in her role at Wildlife Institute of India, she has worked with TNC-India team on the e-flows assessment for River Ganga. Roshni likes to learn new things, read detective novels, solve logical puzzles, do yoga, travel with her husband and dance hip-hop to refresh herself.

Sagar Mysorekar

GIS Head

Sagar R. Mysorekar is a geographer and heads The Nature Conservancy India’s GIS program. He has over 15 years of experience in delivering solutions using GIS and related technologies. He started his career with TNC’s Arkansas chapter as a GIS Intern and later became a GIS Manager for the Michigan and Great Lakes chapter. After leaving The Nature Conservancy in mid-2013, Sagar joined a start-up, Quantta Analytics, as Head GIS Services in India where he handled delivery and operations. He led conceptualization, configuration, and development of revenue generating Location Analytics business using Open Source technologies, managing diverse team of data researcher, data scientists, data engineers, and GIS experts to deliver 100+ projects ranging from banking, NBFC, healthcare, retail, and utility domains. Sagar is a certified Project Management Professional (PMP). Some of his work has been published in reputed scientific journals. Sagar enjoys yoga, watching birds, football, and reading books related to history and mythology.

Shuchi Vora

Applied Freshwater Scientist

An engineer, social scientist and conservationist, Shuchi’s interest area is the science-policy interface in freshwater conservation. She graduated from University of Oxford in 2018 where she read Water Science, Policy and Management. Her research at Oxford was on the effectiveness of water allocation policy decisions in the Mara river basin in Kenya. Prior to Oxford, she worked with the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) on urban water management and multi-stakeholder river basin organisations in the Ganges basin. She is a gold medallist from TISS-Mumbai and has worked with Hindustan Coca-Cola Beverages Pvt. Ltd as a Supply Chain Team Lead.

Sushil Saigal

Program Lead – Lands

Sushil Saigal has over 25 years of experience of working on issues related to climate change, conservation and natural resources management. As the Applied Lands Scientist at The Nature Conservancy India, Sushil oversees the organisation’s portfolio of land conservation projects. He has led the development of the organisation’s strategies for climate change mitigation through natural climate solutions as well as its work in the Central Indian Highlands. Prior to joining The Nature Conservancy, he worked in leadership positions with USAID Partnership for Land Use Science (Forest-PLUS) Program, Winrock International India, International Institute for Environment and Development, and Society for Promotion of Wastelands Development. Sushil has authored/edited five books and several papers on forestry, conservation, and climate change issues. Sushil has completed three Master’s degrees: MBA (IIFM), MSc Forestry at the University of Oxford, U.K., and an MPhil in Environment & Development at the University of Cambridge, U.K. He was a Gates & ORS Scholar at Cambridge and holds a Ph.D in Political Ecology from the Department of Geography, University of Cambridge. Sushil loves travelling to offbeat places, following current affairs and listening to Bollywood music.

Sushmita Mandal

Freshwater Lead

Sushmita is an applied researcher – manager with a background in managing large scale trans-boundary freshwater, conservation and livelihood projects. She has worked on crafting common pool resource management institutions in the biodiversity-rich Eastern Ghats in India at Foundation for Ecological Security (FES), India; forest rights of tribal communities and mapping of cultural landscapes in the Western Ghats at Ashoka Trust for Research in Ecology and Environment (ATREE), India; strengthening water diplomacy through multi-stakeholder dialogues and joint research in the Ganga Brahmaputra Meghna basin of India and Bangladesh at International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), India, and grassroots diplomacy for conservation of Hilsa fish and livelihood of fisherfolk dependent on the same, across riverscapes in India and Bangladesh at the International Water Association (IWA), Netherlands. Sushmita is an alumna of Lady Shri Ram College for Women, Delhi and Tata Institute of Social Sciences. Mumbai, and also graduated from the University of Cambridge with an MPhil in Conservation Leadership. In her free-time she enjoys being outdoors: bird watching and tree-spotting. She loves to explore heritage, crafts, and textiles in her travels.