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woman leading coral reef conservation

Meet the Woman Leading Coral Reef Conservation in Galápagos

As park rangers for the Galapagos National Park Directorate, 100 women are dedicated to protecting the natural wonders of the Galapagos Islands. Jenifer Saurez, a marine biologist and 36-year old Galapaguena, is one of these environmental stewards. She works tirelessly to protect the coral reefs that surround the islands.

Jenifer’s Journey

Jenifer was fascinated by the ocean as a young girl. She worked at the Charles Darwin Foundation for many years, gaining expertise in Galapagos’ marine biodiversity, after earning her biology degree with the aid of a scholarship. Jenifer played a key role in 2014 in the marine ecosystem monitoring of the GNPD. She spearheaded a project funded by Galapagos Conservancy that aimed to restore coral reefs within selected areas of the Galapagos Marine Reserve.

The Deepest Conservation Diving

Jenifer’s job often requires her to dive into the depths of the ocean in order to collect vital data and assess coral’s health. The role is not only demanding but also incredibly rewarding. Each dive and every data point contributes to the conservation of Galapagos’s unparalleled beauty.


Innovative Approaches

Galapagos Conservancy, in recognition of the importance of corals to marine health, is proud to support Jenifer’s pioneering project. This involves establishing underwater nurseries at Academy Bay on Santa Cruz Island. These nurseries encourage coral growth and reproduction, which helps regenerate vital areas of the GMR. This project not only supports marine ecosystems, but also local communities and industry. It paves the way for a future that is sustainable.

Education and Inspiration

Jenifer is a firm believer in the saying, “Nobody can protect what they do not know”. She has made it her mission to educate the community on the Galapagos ecosystems and coral reefs. She hopes that by bringing attention to the uniqueness of the Galapagos ecosystem, the islanders will feel a greater sense of pride and responsibility.

Jenifer’s story is a great example of the important role that women play in conservation. Their passion and perseverance, as guardians of Galapagos’ terrestrial and underwater treasures are driving positive changes in the islands and beyond.



woman leading coral reef conservation
Signing of the cooperation agreement between the Galápagos National Park Directorate and Galápagos Conservancy for the delivery of essential equipment for coral cultivation in the pilot project. ©Galápagos Conservancy


woman leading coral reef conservation
Coral growth in Bahía Academia, Puerto Ayora, Thanks to Jennifer’s restoration efforts.
©Galápagos Conservancy