Hi I am Arabella Willing I am a British marine biologist best known for my work with Hawksbill turtles and environmental outreach programmes.
I am no stranger to the Middle East; I grew up travelling the world, spending four years in Oman as a teenager. I studied marine biology at the University of St. Andrews and began my career on a remote island in the Maldives, educating isolated communities about biology, sustainability and marine conservation. I went on to join Hyatt hotels and was the company’s first “Resident Marine Biologist” at Park Hyatt Maldives Hadahaa. I moved to Park Hyatt Abu Dhabi in 2013 and two years later became Head of Conservation & Community Engagement. During this time I developed a host of activities and initiatives that helped further the understanding, appreciation and protection of nature on Saadiyat Island, whilst simultaneously ensuring that the hotel and its neighbours adhere to strict environmental standards behind the scenes.
In January 2019 I joined the Conservation Education team at Emirates Nature-WWF to work on “Connect with Nature” a new programme that gives UAE youth access to learning and leadership opportunities, one-of-a-kind experiences and thrilling adventures.
In my free time I volunteer as the co-chair of the Abu Dhabi Chapter of the Emirates Natural History Group where I oversee their lecture series, field trips, publication of their scientific journal “Tribulus” and their research and conservation awards programme.
In 2018 I was voted the winner of the Pride of Abu Dhabi Leadership Award. I look forward to speaking at MEYE 2020.