SANDER LOITE - Estonia
Sander is a scriptwriter, editor and host of TV programmes. The Estonian nature and environment programme "Ozone" is his home programme. In addition, Sander has led the production of the popular science programme series "Eureka" and contributed to the documentary competition series "Guardians of the Sky", to be aired this autumn. Work has taken him to record the wonderful nature of Europe, Africa and Central America. In 2016, Sander and his co-producers completed the documentary "Cutting Through" which discusses the impact of a planned shipping channel in Nicaragua on the nature and the residents.
Sander’s dedication to the area of nature is supported by his education – a Master’s degree in Zoology and Hydrobiology from the University of Tartu and in Science Media Production from the Imperial College London.
LIINA TRIŠKINA-VANHATALO - Estonia
Liina has worked in cinematography for over 20 years, most of it as a documentary director, script- and film editor. Her ties with nature films are tight – Liina has edited various Estonian nature films, starting from Vasiliy Sarana’s "The Return of the Musk Ox" to Remek Meel’s "Life on the Mother River". In 2018, Liina made her debut as a director with the full-length feature film "Take It or Leave It". The film exceeded expectations with regard to audience popularity, was Estonia’s candidate for the foreign-language film Oscar, and still circulates at festivals in different places around the world.
FATHOLLAH AMIRI - Iran
Amiri has been making environmental and wildlife films for 15 years. He studied cinema at university. He is also the Director of the Iran Wildlife Pictures Institute and has made many films and won numerous awards among which are Wild Screen Panda Award for "In the Realm of the Spider-tailed Viper" and Green Screen independent awards for "Ranger and Leopard" which also won the 1st Prize and the Best Director prize at the Matsalu Film Festival 2018 and the Best People and Nature Film award at the Jackson Hole Film Festival. By making these films, Amiri hopes to make the condition of wildlife better in Iran, as his main goal is to help save Iran’s wildlife.
ERKKI PEETSALU - Estonia
Erkki has been with National Geographic Magazine Estonia as Editor in Chief since its launch in 2011. Starting from 2017, he also has a member of production team of NGM Nordic editions (Denmark, Norway, Sweden, Finland). Erkki has wide experience in media landscape, including newspapers, radio, digital and books. He has been involved in PR & communications business, and also lecturing in several universities. He has a degree in journalism from Tartu University in Estonia. Erkki has been active in the field of NGOs and local communities, he's interests are related with nature and sustainable living, as well with different disciplines of human bodywork. He works at home office in Haanja Upland, South Estonia.
IRINA ZHURAVLYOVA - Russia
For over 10 years, Irina has been engaged in cultural and media projects concerning a responsible attitude towards the environment. Irina is the director and producer of the film "Kamchatka Bears. Life Begins". Irina's approach is to create meditative and atmospheric films which allow the viewer to dive into the beauty of wild nature to the extent possible and experience the important boundary beyond which humans should not intervene. "Kamchatka Bears. Life Begins" has received 24 awards at 43 festivals in 20 countries. At the 16th Matsalu Nature Film Festival the film received Highly Commended Diploma by Jury. Currently Irina is working on films about old forests and Asian black bears. She lives in Perm and Moscow, Russia.
LENNART GLADH - Sweden
Lennart first visited Estonia in the late 1980ies when Soviet Union started to dissolve. The aim of the visit was to establish contacts for future cooperation between a nature reserve and Ramsar site in Sweden with the Matsalu Nature Reserve. The nature with all the birds and plants, some of which are very rare in Sweden, was overwhelming. Cooperation started and Lennart left his position as a state official and became the Baltic project leader for WWF. He has now been to Estonia about 60 times in connection with various Baltic projects and is still impressed by the nature and the people. His latest visit was in May 2019 when Estonia organised a seminar on dam removal. Estonia is most likely the leader among European countries when it comes to restoring rivers and protecting Salmonidae and other migrating fish species.