Trained as a marine ecologist, I have worked for 25 years in rural development programs in Africa, Asia and Latin America. I joined World Agroforestry in 2010, leading the Research Methods group that helps ensure science quality. I led the Sentinel Landscape Initiative 2012–2016, coordinating 10 teams across eight landscapes that provided evidence of the importance of forests and trees in the livelihoods of rural communities. Previously, I ran a consultancy on sustainable land management in Malaysia and lectured in statistics at the University of Sabah, Malaysia; and worked for several years in the German Ministry of Food, Agriculture and Consumer Protection’s Federal Agricultural Research Center. I was based from 2017 to 2020 in the Philippines leading a global policy project for integrating trees-on-farms’ targets into sub-national plans to support governments’ commitments to the United Nations Convention on Biodiversity and Climate Change. I moved back to Germany and joined the Global Landscapes Forum as Science and Policy Advisor. Apart from my multidisciplinary background my strongest asset is my ability to bridge working relationships between people and organisations. Thanks to my education and professional time in Europe, Asia and Africa I easily communicating with people of various backgrounds and across institutional, cultural and disciplinary divides. My biggest satisfaction is to see people I work with advancing their career pathes and to make a difference in their own countries.