In Memoriam: Jennifer W. Oppenheimer

Jennifer W. Oppenheimer strong commitment to preserving Africa’s wildlife through conservation is a hallmark of her legacy, and she was deeply passionate about training young African leaders to become stewards of the continent’s wildlife and resources. You can help continue her legacy by supporting scholarships for students who are passionate about conservation. Gifts will go to the Foundation for African Leadership, a private non-profit foundation whose purpose is to provide scholarships to students to attend ALU.

A seed funder for African Leadership University, the late Jennifer W. Oppenheimer was instrumental in the establishment of the pan-African university in 2013. Three years later—in mid 2016—Jennifer approached the University’s founder, Fred Swaniker, with an idea to create a new generation of African leaders who would lead efforts to safeguard Africa’s natural resources and wildlife. Her vision—shared by ALU—was to ensure that Africa’s wildlife becomes a true African ‘asset’ that is enjoyed by Africans and the world, and that contributes to the sustainable development of Africa. Jennifer subsequently provided seed funding to enable the establishment of the ALU School of Wildlife Conservation.

As a result of Jennifer’s vision, 100% of the 3 million African leaders ALU will produce by 2060 will receive a foundation course in conservation. Our expectation is that a significant subset of these leaders will specialize in conservation at ALU and will ultimately make it their life’s mission to engage in conservation efforts on the continent. This will ensure that the most talented and influential African leaders of the future will all understand the vital importance of conserving Africa’s wildlife. In addition, thousands of professionals who are currently engaged in conservation efforts will be upskilled through short courses and executive education to become more effective stewards of wildlife. Particular emphasis will be given to how conservation can economically benefit African communities, thereby providing a powerful incentive to conserve wildlife.

Follow the progress on our website,