African Bush Safaris
Jim Brett has worked 50 years in conservation, and is recognized
by the Department of Environmental Protection as one of
the top environmental leaders of Pennsylvania. A life-long
naturalist, he began teaching natural history in the public
school system before joining the staff at Hawk Mountain
in 1971 where he developed the education, international
training and volunteer programs, and established a premier
visitor center. His work at the sanctuary increased its
stature from a regional wildlife reserve to an organization
of international significance and stature.
left Hawk Mountain in 1996 to become the first Executive
Director of the Ned Smith Center for Nature and the Arts,
a position he held for three years until he was appointed
by Governor Tom Ridge as the Commonwealth’s Senior
Conservation Advisor. During his tenure with the Governor
he formed the Governor’s Youth Council for Sportsmen’s
Concerns and Conservation. Jim continued his conservation
work with state government into Governor Rendell’s
administration where he served as an assistant to the Secretary
of Department of Conservation and Natural Resources.
He is founder of the PA Institute for Conservation Education
(Wildlife Leadership Academy) with colleague Michele Kittell.
The Institute has received recognition from across the Commonwealth
for its development of innovative natural history education
and stewardship programs offered to a wide and diverse audience.
Jim serves as Honorary President of the organization and
is very active in its leadership, development and educational
He has extensive international experience and continues
to lead natural history safaris across the globe which in
turn support conservation initiatives. He also serves on
the Board of the African Nature Conservation Trust and has
life memberships in the Society for Protection of Nature
in Israel, the Endangered Wildlife Trust in South Africa,
and is a Fellow in the Explorer’s Club. His most recent
project in Africa is involved with establishing migratory
corridors for elephants between Tanzania and Mozambique.
On one of his recent travels to Africa, he discovered the
oldest homo sapiens footprints in Africa. What is most poignant
about the discovery is that it resulted in the protection
of a habitat that supported over a million Lesser Flamingos,
a threatened species.
Jim has been awarded an honorary Doctor of Laws degree from
Kutztown University for his conservation education accomplishments
through the International Global Wildlife Educational Internship
Program as well as his work on wildlife heritage in the
Commonwealth, and was honored in 2012 by the Pennsylvania
Lands Trust as a 'conservation hero.
Jim Brett exemplifies conservation leadership and serves
as an extraordinary role model for Pennsylvanians through
his great work in environmental education and conservation
and through his cultural understanding, in Pennsylvania,
nationally and around the world.
For more information contact Wild Africa Bush Safaris