Marc Palahí, Chair of CBA

Marc Palahí


Marc Palahí is a leading expert on forests and global change, with a new vision of the transformational role forests can play in fighting climate change and developing a circular bioeconomy.

Marc is Chief Nature Officer at Lombard Odier Investment Managers. From 2015-May 2023 he was Director of the European Forest Institute, driving its development as a pan-European science-policy platform, and working to connect knowledge to action at the interface of science, policy and business. Marc has a PhD in forestry and economics and his work, which has featured in Nature and other high-level scientific journals, focuses on the development of a sustainable circular bioeconomy that prospers in harmony with nature.

Yitagesu Tekle Tegegne

Yitagesu Tekle Tegegne

Director of Programmes

Yitagesu is a Senior Researcher and team leader in the Governance Programme at the European Forest Institute. He has been working on advancing knowledge of forest governance, restoration, drivers of land use changes and policy analysis in Africa, Asia, and Latin America for the past 14 years. His most recent work focuses on science-policy-mediainterface, public private partnership in forest sector, climate change mitigation and forest sector reform. He has been involved in various projects as lead investigator, project co-coordinator and project manager. He has PhD degree in global forest governance and policy from University of Helsinki.

Rach Colling

CBA Communications

Rach Colling is Head of Communications at the European Forest Institute. Rach joined EFI in 2011 and has been responsible for the development of EFI’s policy support communications, as well as managing and developing digital communications tools. She has over 20 years’ experience in science communication, and prior to joining EFI ran a successful communications business working with UK government agencies and universities. Before that, Rach worked for BBC News Online as a journalist, as well as in communications/marketing for various UK universities. She has a masters’ degree in international relations from Cambridge University and trained as a journalist in the UK.


Paula Wilson

Chief Financial and Operating Officer

Paula has recently been recruited to be the CFOO of the newly established charity, the Circular Bioeconomy Alliance.  She has held several financial and operational leadership roles in both the commercial and charity sectors and has nearly 20 years’ experience in the charity sector. After graduating from Law School, Paula qualified as a Charted Accountant whilst working in the business environment. Recently Paula was the Financial Controller and Deputy Treasurer to The Household of Their Royal Highnesses, The Former Prince of Wales and The Duchess of Cornwall.   She was also the Interim Chief Executive Officer of The Prince of Wales’s Charitable Fund. Paula was appointed a Member of The Royal Victorian Order (MVO) in the Kings’s 2023 Birthday Honours List, an honour solely in the gift of the King.

Antoine Montavon

Company Secretary and Manager

Antoine has recently joined the Circular Bioeconomy Alliance as Company Secretary and Manager. He has been managing projects in an international setting throughout his career and has held several roles handling issues linked to governance and strategy. Most recently, he was a Philanthropy Advisor at Lombard Odier, advising clients on their private & corporate philanthropy as well as the Group’s charitable undertakings and has been working intimately with non-profits for the past 5 years. Antoine holds a master’s degree in biomedical engineering from Imperial College London.