Our team is our strength. Motivated youth from the local villages have been trained and sensitised to work on our projects. Since 2001, TRACT has given employment to more than 20 youth annually, creating local leadership within the communities for wildlife conservation.
We encourage our team members to use the training and the time spent with TRACT as a stepping stone to move forward and join the State Forest Department. This helps them get a permanent employment with the government and also ensures motivated young local people within the system.
We are proud of Vinod Jambhule and Rundan Katkar who were trained with TRACT and worked on our projects and are now part of the State Forest Department.
ABHILASHA WAKDOT - PROGRAM CO-ORDINATOR: Born and brought up in the forests of Kanha, Abhilasha has the wild engrained in her. Wilderness as her second home, she came to TRACT 5 years ago, with a passion to work for wildlife. Armed with a Masters in business administration with a double specialisation in financial marketing and administrative work, she's high on energy and keeps the office together. Handling all administrative challenges for TRACT, she's the go-to for all information and data. She has an aptitude to learn new languages and is an avid reader.
AMAN SAHU - PROJECT MANAGER : Aman has done his graduation and MBA in marketing from the the Nagpur University. The dedication and enthusiasm that he brings to the work environment every day is commendable. Manager project for the 'Conservation of Community and Forest' in 45 village of the Pench tiger reserve buffer under the Village Social Transformation Foundation, Aman coordinates the administration and the progress of the project with the field team, the officials at the 10 Gram Panchayats, the village heads and the senior officials at the revenue offices.
KAUSTUBH BHAKAY - EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR: A management post graduate from the Pune university, Kaustubh has a flair for policy making and analysis. His attraction to works bringing ground level transformation, with a command over languages and his leadership skills, he is an asset to TRACT as he watches over the ongoing projects and the timeline. When not in office, Kaustubh is outdoors exploring or pursing his random reading.
SHASHANK LADEKAR - PROJECT FIELD CO-ORDINATOR Shashank has been working in the Nagzhira Nawegaon Tiger Reserve (NNTR) landscape since over a decade. A local lad from Gondia, with a passion to for the wildlife and the forest, Shashank has spent years in this forest as a youngster, working with the local forest staff and as part of the youth club. He has converted his passion into a career and has been with TRACT since the past 5 years, working as co-ordinator, heading the TRACT team in NNTR for Tiger Ambassadors. He works with the local communities and school children in forest fringes, addressing conflict and protection. Shashank is also passionate about rescuing birds, reptiles and the smaller creatures.
SURYABHAN SURPAM - CONSERVATION LEADER Suryabhan, originating from the Kolara village in the Tadoba buffer, has been an integral part of the TRACT team since the last 13 years. He joined TRACT as a junior field personnel, assisting with the patrols in the buffer. But soon, his field tracking skills and an understanding of the conditions of the locals living withe core boundaries, he commenced his work for assisting these families through their voluntary rehabilitation. Suryabhan has worked with them, addressing their documentation to ensure a sure and just package to them. With his understanding of human - large carnivore conflict, Suryabhan has also assisted in addressing mitigation at all levels.
VIKAS TUMRAM - PROJECT FIELD CO-ORDINATOR A true conservation leader, Vikas is the local boy from the village Ghosri, situated deep in the buffer of Tadoba. He joined TRACT 4-years ago, armed with a Masters in Social Work, eager to bring change to his land. And that he has! Vikas has worked tirelessly, to take the TRACT work of human - large carnivore conflict mitigation forward. He has built capacity in the youth of more than 100 villages in the forest fringes, to create awareness about their role in mitigation and to build leadership ensuring their participation in managing this co-existence. With his calm and composed way of addressing conflict, he is a well known figure among local communities in the buffer, someone who speaks their language, yet brings science based solutions.
SAMEER NANDESHWAR - CONSERVATION LEADER Sameer has graduated with a Bachelors and then followed it up with a Masters in Social Work from the Nagpur university. Hailing from a tiny village of Gadchiroli, Sameer has a 5 year experience in working in the rural development sector. With his spirit to work wonders and bring change, Sameer has been a Field Co-ordinator with TRACT since a year. Armed with skills to get work done at all levels, Sameer leads a team of 5 field personnel, working for the village development project under the VSTF project. His aptitude as a task master, hard worker with extraordinary oratory skills has ensured the progress of the project on the ground level.
HEMRAJ CHOKHANDRE- CONSERVATION LEADER
With his academics as a Diploma, Bachelor and a Masters in Education, a veterinary Diploma, welding skills through the Industrial training Institute and in computer skills, Hemraj heads a team of 5 as the co-ordinator for the VSTF project, holding fort in the Ramtek block. With his skills to work with the government officials, the village community and lead the team of TRACT field personnel, Hemraj has taken this project forward in the very short period of time. His understanding of the working of various sectors has facilitated the project. A local from Ramtek, he also has a keen interest in the politics of the area.
TANVI KAKODKAR - CONSERVATION LEADER With a Bachelors degree in Economics from Fergusson, Pune, followed by an MA in Economics from Mumbai school of Economics and Public policy, University of Mumbai, Tanvi holds the fort at TRACT where it concerns development of skills and capacity in women and youth of the forest landscape. Her work with the Self Help Groups has brought a change in the awareness among women in the rural villages in the forest fringes. She is working towards showcasing the Tadoba buffer as the model for management, with Eco tourism as the tool for conservation. With a travel bug, she's keen on exploring new places, different cuisines and cultures.