Meet Our Kilimanjaro Society Members

We are thankful for those donors who have made a legacy gift to the African Wildlife Foundation. Here are their stories. Share why you support Africa’s wildlife on social media using hashtags #AWFlegacy and #MyWildlifeLegacy.

Valerie Watt: Live a Little Differently

Valerie Watt lives modestly so that she can put more toward supporting AWF in the future.

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Brian Hoyt: Steward of the Earth

Following an old piece of wisdom, Brian believes we should be stewards of the earth. But, he says, we have not done a good enough job. See how he is using his estate plan to make a difference for wildlife.

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A Dream Becomes a Legacy

"From childhood, I have always loved animals and Africa, but I never imagined that I would ever visit through anything but many books and documentaries. Fortunately, my children always loved travel and wildlife as much as I did."

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More Than Just a Gift...

Earlier this year, Queenelle Minet fulfilled a lifelong dream to go on safari, returning just as COVID-19 stopped travel. See how this experience impacted her, and how she and her partner, Rob, are creating a secure future for AWF and themselves.

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Lifelong Love of Wildlife

Dr. R. Matilde Mésavage’s captivation with animals, and interest in African wildlife, started at a young age. See how she came to know AWF and the unique way she is supporting our work.

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Africa: Like Nothing Else

For Wallace Cackowski, Africa is a special place. His experiences there, and his love of Africa's wildlife, inspired him to make a gift that will preserve it for generations to come.

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Why I Support AWF

AWF supporter Gary Baxel shares why the lifesaving work of the African Wildlife Foundation is important to him and how he is furthering his support to protect wildlife from extinction with a legacy gift.

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Kathryn Johnson: "The Dust of Africa Never Leaves Your Shoes"

Kate Johnson's interest in Africa developed in the 1990s. While at first Africa had seemed too big, and travel too difficult to arrange, when a forest-ranger friend from Ireland planned a "crazily inexpensive" tour for a small group, she decided to take the plunge.

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Africa as a Catalyst for Realizing Dreams

Sue Orloff, like many women in their 60s, is fulfilling aspirations about which she had previously only dreamed. It all started when Sue was 22 and spent a year hitchhiking through parts of Africa. She realized then her life path should be work in wildlife conservation. Thirty years later, Sue is a professional wildlife biologist and published author of many articles on endangered species in the U.S.

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Most Incredible Continent on Earth

Jane Fouser's wish to volunteer at the zoo finally came true after retirement. It was here that her passion for Africa ignited. As a docent, she obtained extensive information about the animals, many of which were African species. Volunteering for Dr. Travis, Jane assisted on projects related to chimpanzees in Tanzania's Gombe National Park and to mountain gorillas with the Mountain Gorilla Veterinary Project in Rwanda.

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The Next Best Thing to Being in Africa

If variety is the spice of life, Sandra Rosencrans has packed several lifetimes worth of flavor into her 79 years. She has, after all, been an ad copywriter, TV voice-over actress, U.S. Army officer, chief of public affairs for the Environmental Protection Agency’s Mid-Atlantic Region, bed-and-breakfast proprietor, and even a professional stencil artist!

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Africa: My Love Story

Earlier this year, I had the opportunity to travel across Kenya on an AWF member safari. The trip brought us to many breathtaking landscapes, where we enjoyed spectacular wildlife viewing both at national parks and at local conservancies that AWF helps to support.

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Conserving the Very Best of the Planet

Like many New Yorkers, Billy and Cheryl Geffon's lives changed forever on Sept. 11, 2001. The day began like any other as Billy, a Wall Street money manager, and wife Cheryl, a veteran Newburgh, N.Y., school teacher, left for work. They came home shaken and with a completely new outlook on their priorities.

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A Passion for All Animals

Jennifer Ritman has always had a special affinity for animals—and they, for her. For Jennifer, the idea that so few elephants, mountain gorillas, lions and other wildlife exist in the wild was gut-wrenching enough to want to make a legacy gift for their sake.

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Melanie Harkness: Africa in Her Heart

As an only child, Melanie Harkness (née Gray) spent a lot of time alone, but was rarely lonely. She remembers exploring nature for hours, interacting with the frogs and other creatures she encountered on her long outings. Through this unstructured time, she developed an intimate relationship with nature that molded her for the rest of her life.

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