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Forum: Rainforest Action Network - Gemma Tillack and Chelsea Matthews

Gemma Tillack directs Rainforest Action Network’s Agribusiness campaign that is addressing one of the main drivers of rainforest destruction in Indonesia: industrial palm oil. The campaign is focused on shifting demand away from socially and environmentally irresponsible palm oil, creating incentives for the production of responsible palm oil and transforming global supply chains. RAN’s campaigns create the market leverage necessary to improve both corporate and government policies and practices.

Prior to this position, Tillack worked for 10 years for The Wilderness Society in Australia.  Tillack played a key role in the campaigns that contributed to Gunns Limited’s decision to transition out of native forest logging in Tasmania. Gunns Limited was Australia’s largest native forest logging and wood chipping company. For the past two years Tillack has been involved in negotiations that lead to the signing of the $274 million Tasmanian Forest Intergovernmental Agreement (TFIGA). This agreement was reached between environment Non-Government Organizations, the forestry industry and unions and aims to support the protection of important natural forests and a transition to a plantation based forestry sector in Tasmania. Tillack has a background in environmental science and community organizing.

Here is a few links to you can share with people who want to learn more about Rainforest Action Network are: – learn more about Rainforest Action Network and its campaigns for the forests, their inhabitants and the natural systems that sustain life by transforming the global marketplace through education, grassroots organizing and non-violent direct action. – read RAN’s blog for breaking stories. – learn about RAN’s campaign to protect rainforests and Indigenous Peoples and rural communities rights from palm oil expansion. – find out how you can take action to support RAN’s work.

After the Forum, please join us for a buffet lunch at 12:15pm.  The lunch is complimentary for first-time visitors and students.


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  • Andrea D.

    Wonderful! I got a chance to watch the rest of the audience and they seemed very engaged.
    RAN's strategies are well planned and respectful of the companies they are informing and persuading; and I like that they are determined to keep a friendly relationship with them, even if they had to go from humor to satire to keep the pressure on.
    Their targets are huge and imposing but seem to find RAN hard to resist! Great work by these activists!!

    September 16, 2013

  • Helen A.

    Very clear info about all RAN is doing to protect orangutans; mostly-easy to read & understand PowerPoint slides, even from the back of the room. The logo of the heart made with a human & orangutan hand is very clever; ditto the "Power is in your palm" slogan.

    September 15, 2013

  • Andrea D.

    This should be a great talk about the Rainforest and the companies who are busily destroying it, but also about the successful tactics that RAN uses to shame those companies into backing off.

    September 11, 2013

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