Our International Team

Julian Matthews

Julian Matthews

Julian founded TOFTigers in 2004 in response to plummeting tiger numbers across Asia. He remains the main driver of the organisation.

Julian believes that wildlife tourism is a critical force in saving wildlife, gaining community support and ensuring wilderness conservation and is passionate about advocating and helping to develop a more responsible and sustainable approach to ensuring it’s used for wildlife and habitat preservation across the Indian subcontinent and other tiger bearing landscapes.

Julian was originally the Founder Director of an award winning nature and safari travel business, now called Steppes Discovery, part of the Steppes Travel Group. This ‘excuse for a job’ took him across the globe, visiting wildernesses areas on seven continents from India to the Arctic, from the Galapagos to Rwanda, designing and developing new wildlife tours and safaris programmes, in cooperation and support of a host of wildlife projects alongside conservation agencies and their wildlife experts and host communities. The company raised over £1.5M for wildlife conservation.

In 2004 his concern at the Tiger’s continuing demise, prompted him to launch the TOFTigers campaign to get the expanding nature tourism sector to support better and more sustainable nature tourism practices in Tiger parks across the Indian subcontinent. Today it has over 220 travel businesses involved - from around the globe.

In 2009 Julian spent three months driving and walking through many the unprotected forests of central, northern and north eastern India, on a quest to find a landscape in which to set up India’s first ever community based tiger conservancy. Once found, he spent a year seeking permission to undertake the huge project on 300 square kilometres of denuded forest. This project failed to get official approval from the Federal Government.

In 2012 he launched a web-based tiger watch project, called www.tigernation.org. Alongside many Indian colleagues and tiger experts he put together the ‘Facebook for Tigers’ – allow users to follow the daily dramas of tigers in the wild - as a direct way of keeping them safe in their forest home and as a global educational medium on the daily lives of specific tigers.

Julian has been interviewed for radio and TV around the world, writes numerous articles, as well as lectures on nature and wildlife conservation both in the UK, in India and around the globe.

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Hashim Tyabji

Hashim Tyabji

Director and owner of a number of award winning lodges including Bagh Van Lodge in Pench National Park and Forsyth Lodge in Satpura, as well as being a Director of India Explorations in the UK, he is currently setting up a new mobile camping business.

In his former life he was a former Chief Naturalist at Tiger Tops Jungle Lodge in Royal Chitwan National Park, Nepal, and former member of the Indian Board of Wildlife. He has a house near Bandhavgarh Tiger Reserve where he has served as honorary wildlife warden, undertaken a bird survey, published a guide to the Reserve and acted as scientific advisor on television films about tigers.

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Mehra Dalton

Mehra Dalton

Mehra Dalton was born and educated in Bombay India. She went on to do her higher education in the United Kingdom. Having started a family at an early age Mehra joined the family business, Greaves Travel in 1984. Over the years Mehra moved through the company and was appointed Managing Director in 1992. Since this time Mehra Dalton has steered the company to international acclaim, branching out into the luxury bespoke holiday market to India as well as expanding the existing consolidation side. Mehra has a personal interest in sustainable tourism and was a founder trustee of the charity Jaisalmer in Jeopardy, and is semi retired.

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Rahul Brijnath

Rahul Brijnath

With a background in research and wildlife conservation in Dudhwa with Billy Arjan Singh and in Chitwan National Park in Nepal with Dr Chuck McDougal for 10 years , Rahul brings lots of experience to the campaign in conservation and wildlife.

For the past 20 years he has been involved with the Travel business with companies such as Steppes East, Cox & Kings and Kuoni. He now has his own representation company.

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Mary-Anne Denison-Pender

Mary-Anne Denison-Pender

Mary-Anne Denison-Pender has spent 20 years in the travel industry, both working for and managing tour operating companies like Cox and Kings and Western & Oriental.

She now runs her own business, MAhout, which represents India’s finest small hotels and one of Australia’s most innovative ground handling companies. Considered one of the country’s leading experts on Indian travel, her knowledge of the subcontinent is second to none. She is a Founder member of the TOFTigers campaign

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Jill Vrdlovcova

Jill Vrdlovcova

With a naturally nurturing character, Jill has extensive qualifications in Environmental Conservation, Ecology and Land Management from the universities of Bath, Bournemouth, Southampton and the Royal Agricultural College. This is coupled with relevant, far-reaching experience ranging from running an environmental education charity to lecturing in agricultural colleges. Add to this a life-long passion for wildlife and applying the highest of standards to running her organic farm, and it is clear that her association with TOFTigers is a natural fit.

Building on her teaching and relationship-building in the area of conservation, always focused on enabling better outcomes, Jill represents the interests of TOFTigers' international Tour Operator family. Her aim is to support them in applying and show-casing to their clients principles of caring for our wild and wonderful natural environment, this time on another and altogether more exotic subcontinent.

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Kiki Paris

Kiki Paris

Kiki Paris, owner of the Wanderlust Portfolio, is TOFTigers’ representative in the US and Canada. With over 30 years of sales, marketing, branding and consulting experience, she began her second career in the adventure travel industry to combine her professional skills and her passions for wildlife and adventure travel. Her very first safari experience as a consumer in the 1990’s was at Tiger Tops in the Royal Chitwan National Park in Nepal, then on to Botswana for big cats, then back to India for the magnificent tiger, back to Africa to climb Kilimanjaro and safari, on to trek in the Himalayas hoping to see snow leopards.

For the past 6 years, she has worked for Africa operators involved in wildlife conservation of rhinos, lions and gorillas as well as an Indian operator very involved with the Delhi based TOFTigers India Wildlife Association, and is excited to work on behalf of TOFTigers. As she travels throughout North America visiting tour operators and travel agents who specialize in wildlife trips, her goal will be to encourage and energize the trade to actively promote tiger conservation through their business associations on the Indian subcontinent.

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