All of us at Fauna & Flora International (FFI) were deeply saddened to receive news of the death of Dorette “Dielle” Fleischmann.

Dielle was interested in the environmental movement, and wildlife conservation in particular, well before they became mainstream issues, and dedicated much of her life to the protection of the world’s wild spaces at a local, national and international level. Among her many activities, she served as a board member of FFI USA, then as secretary to the board, and as a vice-president of FFI for well over two decades, and played a pivotal role in promoting the work of the organisation in the United States, in which respect her energy knew no bounds.

Her enthusiasm, generosity, sense of adventure, intelligence and insight – not to mention her unique ability to connect people and plans – will be sorely missed, but Dielle’s legacy lives on in the myriad spectacular landscapes around the world that she helped to safeguard, from the Okavango Delta in Botswana to South Carolina’s Four Holes Swamp – the world’s largest remaining stand of virgin bald cypress and Tupelo gum forest – and the Santee Coastal Reserve, a protected area within the largest river delta on the east coast of the United States.

“Dielle was a great personal friend as well as a pioneer in conservation,” said FFI’s Chief Executive Mark Rose. “Her selfless generosity knew no bounds. She was a wonderful lady and will be sorely missed.”