Michael Jenkins is the founding President and CEO of Forest Trends, a non-profit organization based in Washington, DC. Forest Trends’ mission is to expand the value of forests to society; to promote sustainable forest management and conservation by creating and capturing market values for ecosystem services; to support innovative projects and companies that are developing these markets; and to enhance the livelihoods of local communities living in and around those forests.
From 1989-1999, he was the Associate Director for the Global Security and Sustainability Program of the MacArthur Foundation. Michael's responsibilities with the Program included all grant-making in Latin America and the Caribbean, as well as overarching program management. In 1998, Michael was in a joint appointment as a Senior Forestry Advisor to the World Bank. Before entering the MacArthur Foundation, he worked for three years as an agroforester in Haiti with the USAID Agroforestry Outreach Program. Previous to that, he worked with a Washington-based development organization, Appropriate Technology International, as a technical advisor. In the late 1970s, Michael was a Peace Corps volunteer in Paraguay working in agriculture, apiculture, and forestry projects. He has traveled and worked throughout Latin America, Asia and parts of Africa, and speaks Spanish, French, Portuguese, Creole and Guaraní.
Michael holds a Master’s of Forest Science from Yale University, and has contributed to and authored numerous books/publications, including The Business of Sustainable Forestry: Strategies for an Industry in Transition and Capital Markets and Sustainable Forestry: Opportunities for Investment.
In 2010 he received the Skoll Award for Social Entrepreneurship, and in 2015 the Social Entrepreneur Award from the Schwab Foundation. Also in 2015, Forest Trends was awarded the 2015 Award for Creative and Effective Institutions from the MacArthur Foundation.