Our purpose

Wilderness is disappearing worldwide at an alarming rate. Less than 2% of Europe’s surface is still in its original state. The Carpathian Mountains form some of the largest contiguous forests on the continent with the highest percentage of still virgin woodlands; they contain an extraordinary high number of species, amongst them many autochthonous species; and they are home to the largest European populations of large carnivores. Starting in 2005, formerly nationalised forests have been restituted to private people in Romania. This process triggered massive clear-cuts on these restituted lands and many thousands of hectares of forests were illegally logged, posing a severe threat to the integrity of the Carpathian ecosystem.

Foundation Conservation Carpathia (FCC) was founded in 2009 by 12 philanthropists and conservationists with the goal to stop this illegal logging, and to protect a significant surface of Carpathian forests in form of a completely protected area for future generations. This is done by purchasing land and leasing hunting rights for full protection of all natural elements with private and public money. We intend to ultimately return our landholdings to the public domain for permanent protection in the form of a National Park.

Our vision

We aim to create a world-class wilderness reserve in the Southern Romanian Carpathians, large enough to support significant numbers of large carnivores and to allow evolutionary processes to happen. The project consists of the wider Fagaras Mountains Natura 2000 site, Piatra Craiului National Park and Leaota Mountain and forms a total of over 250,000 ha.

FCC is involved in creating a new, non-destructive economy around the Fagaras Mountains, for the benefit of biodiversity and local communities. Once the project is completed, this new National Park should be a world-class wilderness, an icon for conservation in Europe and an emblematic National Park on our continent.

Our team

CARPATHIA is a very dynamic project and, by now, many people are directly involved.

Fundatia Conservation CARPATHIA is led by a Board of Directors, currently consisting of (in alphabetical order):
Toby Aykroyd (UK), Peter Bennett (UK), Charlie Burrell (UK), Dan Dimancescu (Romania/USA), Markus Jebsen (Denmark/Hong Kong), Paul Lister (UK), Anders Holch Povlsen (Denmark),  Christof Schenck (Germany), Hansjoerg Wyss (Switzerland/USA), Hedi Wyss (Switzerland)

All activities are being managed and directed by (in alphabetical order by family name)
  • Angela Boghiu (responsible communications and community outreach)
  • Daniel Bucur (responsible protected areas)

  • Mădălina Duicu (financial director)
  • Orsolya Csakany (farm manager, Cobor farm)
  • Silviu Chiujdea (farm manager, Cobor farm)
  • Anca Mercea (grant manager)

  • Oliviu Pop (biologist, responsible Leaota Conservation Plan)

  • Barbara Promberger-Fuerpass (executive director)

  • Christoph Promberger (executive director)

  • Ioana Savulescu (legal advisor)

  • Mihai Zotta (technical director)

On the administrative level, project work is being supported by (in alphabetical order by family name)
  • Georgiana Andrei (communications and community outreach department)
  • Adriana Bărbat (accounting department)
  • Alina Brumă (legal department)

  • Anda Cojocaru (accounting department)
  • Iulia-Teodora Florea (tourism responsible)
  • Cristina Grigore (accounting department)

  • Dragoș Lazarin (communications and community outreach department)
  • Diana Andreea Lazăr (legal department assistant)
  • Ciprian Samoilă (GIS expert)
  • Elena Șerban (forest service department)
  • Ana-Maria Șutic (personal assistant to executive directors)

  • Georgiana Tarnea (accounting department)

  • Adina Teslaru (accounting department)

  • Marius Ursăciuc (administrative assistant)

Field work, which is most important to protect and restore all forests and wildlife, is being executed by (in alphabetical order by family name)
  • Daniel Bîrloiu (ranger)

  • Liviu Bulgaru (ranger)

  • Ion Chirocea (restoration worker)
  • Adrian Ciurea (technical director assistant)
  • Ion Cozma (restoration worker)

  • Ionuț Crețu (chief district Vidraru, ranger)
  • Constantin Diaconescu (ranger)

  • Lorin Diaconescu (ranger)

  • Valeriu Ganci (ranger)

  • Răducu Geantă (ranger)

  • Octavian Gheorma (machine operator)

  • Ruben Iosif (wildlife biologist)
  • Cosmin Mihai (ranger)

  • Ioan Moșu (game warden)
  • Maria Iasmina Moza (DNA lab assistant)
  • Dan Nicolae (ranger wildlife)

  • Florin Nicolae (ranger)

  • George Nicolae (restoration worker)

  • Alexandru Oprei (ranger)

  • Ionuț Preda (machine operator)
  • Răzvan Rohan (ranger)
  • Constantin Simion (chief ranger)

  • Bogdan Sulică (chief ranger)
  • Toma Șerb (ranger)
  • Laviniu Terciu (ranger)

  • Ionuț Țoanță (ranger)

  • Codruț Voinescu (ranger)
  • Dan David Zârnovan (ranger)
On the Cobor Farm, project work is being supported by (in alphabeetical order by family name):
  • Anna Babeș (farm worker)
  • Gheorghe Babeș (farm worker)
  • Robert Valentin Botoș (farm worker)
  • Silviu Chiujdea (farm manager)
  • Orsolya Csakany (farm manager)
  • Erika Füzi (farm worker)
  • Ioan Marian (farm worker)
  • Viorel Marian ( farm worker)
  • Ioan Nicolae Pînzeș (farm worker)

Our Masterplan

The FCC executive team has developed a Masterplan for the CARPATHIA project throughout 2013 and 2014, which was approved by the Board of Directors of FCC in October 2014. The Masterplan includes activities in the following fields:

  • Conservation & Restoration (land purchase, restoration, and protection, protected area status and management, and wildlife conservation)
  • Communication (communication, education, and public awareness)
  • Economic Development (development of conservation enterprises)
  • Infrastructure (the building of a multifunctional CARPATHIA Centre and the development of a tourism infrastructure)
  • Organisational Development. (project organisation and project funding)