Our Team

Strong Roots employs a unique model of conservation and development where scientists work closely with indigenous and local communities to apply local solutions to the environmental and protected areas management issues in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

The Board and staff of Strong Roots are composed of people who have a wide understanding of the environmental issues faced by communities and conservation projects in the area. They also come from a wide range of scientific and professional backgrounds.

Our Staff

Dominique Bikaba, Founder and Executive Director: Dominique Bikaba has degrees in Rural Development where he specialized in Regional Planning, and in Forestry and Environmental Studies where he specialized in Ecosystem Conservation and Management. Bikaba has an extensive professional background in conservation and development for having served communities in the area for more than 15 years now. He has also served local, national and international organizations in and outside the DRC, what has provided him with skills and needed knowledge for conservation and development programs. Dominique Bikaba also seats on a number of organizations’ Boards of Advisors and Steering Committees.

Bertin Murhabale, Research Officer: An avid ornithologist and primatologist, Bertin is currently a PhD candidate in Ornithology at the University of Kisangani. He has a MSc in Natural Resource Management; and oversees and coordinates our research documenting the biodiversity of community forests.

Dr Ntamwira Niranda, Deputy Research Officer: Ntamwira has worked with Strong Roots since 2015. He holds a PhD in Botany and leads our efforts to set up long term forest plots, collecting key information on the health of our community forests.

Sarah Tolbert, Community Forestry Coordinator: Sarah joined Strong Roots in 2016, after obtaining her Master of Environmental Management and Master of Arts in Global Affairs.  She is overseeing the development of our community forest corridor in the Kahuzi-Itombwe landscape.

Beatrice Fikiri, Burhinyi Project Coordinator: Beatrice is in charge of monitoring projects’ implementation around the Burhinyi Community Forests. She holds a Bachelors in Rural and Community Development.

Yvette Safi, Kahuzi-Biega Project Coordinator: Yvette manages Strong Roots projects around Kahuzi-Biega National Park. In particular, she leads our reforestation efforts and our work with the wives of the Kahuzi-Biegea park guards.

Monique Fikiri, Program Assistant: Monique is currently studying in Cameroon as a US Fish and Wildlife Service fellow.  She will rejoin our team in June, assisting with the implementation and management of our projects across the landscape.

Nadine Kinja, Accountant: Nadine joined Strong Roots in 2014. She handles the day-to-day financial management and logistics for Strong Roots.