Melanie Meijer zu Schlochtern
Voting Member, SXM Nature Foundation
Melanie, born in 1988, born and raised in the Netherlands, has been living on St. Maarten since 2015. First working as the projects and research officer at the Nature Foundation St. Maarten, since 2019, is now serving as the manager of the foundation.
Her interests in nature and biology started when she was young. During her studies she became fascinated with the underwater world. During her Masters in Ecology, conducted at the VU University of Amsterdam, her final thesis focused on the ecology of the marine species Queen Conch, which led her to the Caribbean island of Sint Eustatius.
Upon graduation, Melanie worked as the science officer at the Saba Bank Management Unit with the Saba Conservation Foundation . Here she conducted fisheries research, continued conch research and participated in different research projects such as shark tagging. After exploring the waters of St Maarten, she begun working with the Nature Foundation at the beginning of 2016. Here she worked on several research projects, mainly the Save our Sharks project and coral restoration, in order to protect St Maarten’s marine life and natural habitats.
Melanie has developed a real passion for sharks and stony corals, due to their nature beauty and their complicated and dependent relationship to each other. She often uses the Foundation’s slogan ‘Nature is our Future’, as she believes without protecting our nature there is no future for humans.
Her favorite quote stresses the importance of protecting our natural resources:
‘When all the trees have been cut down, when all the animal have been hunted, when all the waters are polluted, when all the air is unsafe to breath, only then will you discover you cannot eat money’.