Who we are
The FunCC aims to raise awareness of the importance of fungi and the need to conserve them, enhance coordination among the fungal and the broader conservation communities, and foster action.
A world where fungi and their habitats are highly valued and conserved to the benefit of the environment and society ambitious.
Works to raise awareness of the importance of fungi and foster action to ensure their persistence and continued benefits to the environment and society.
Build upon the growing awareness of the importance of fungi and the need to conserve them within IUCN, conservation community, mycology, and the public at large.
You have the opportunity to get to know each member of the group for fungal conservation from around the world. If you are looking for a representative from your region or continent, you can get more information through the representatives listed below:
Gregory Mueller (Chair)
Greg is chief scientist and Negaunee vice president of science, at the Chicago Botanic Garden where he leads the plant and fungal conservation science and research and graduate student training programs. His research focuses on the evolution, ecology, and conservation of fungi, especially mushrooms. He has carried out fieldwork throughout the world, with a focus on the Americas, China, and Australasia. He has authored six books/book length volumes and more than 100 journal articles. Along with colleague Anders Dahlberg, he coordinates the Global Fungal Red List Initiative. Greg is past president of the Mycological Society of America, a lecturer at the University of Chicago, and an adjunct professor at both the University of Illinois at Chicago and Northwestern University. He is a member of the IUCN SSC Steering Committee, IUCN SSC regional chair North America and the Caribbean, and chairs the IUCN SSC Fungal Conservation Committee and Mushroom, bracket and puffball Specialist Group.
Giuliana Furci (Deputy Chair)
Giuliana is foundress and executive director of the Fungi Foundation. She is a Harvard University Associate, Dame of the Order of the Star of Italy, Deputy Chair of the IUCN Fungal Conservation Committee, and author of several titles including a series of field guides to Chilean fungi and chapters in publications such as Fantastic Fungi. She is co-author of titles such as the 1st State of the World’s Fungi (Kew, 2018) and Biodiversidad de Chile: Patrimonio y Desafíos (Ministry of the Environment, Chile, 2008). Giuliana has worked in the non-profit sector for the last 17 years and has held consulting positions in U.S. philanthropic foundations as well as full-time positions in international marine conservation NGOs, and Chilean environmental NGOs.
Cátia Canteiro (Plants and Fungi Coordinator, Global Centre for Species Survival)
Cátia is a Portuguese conservation biologist currently based in Indianapolis Zoo. She is the Plants and Fungi Conservation Coordinator at the Global Centre for Species Survival, supporting the fungi and plants’ specialist groups from the IUCN Species Survival Commission. Cátia has previously worked at the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, on extinction risk assessments for the IUCN Red List, and is also a certified Red List trainer, with several courses delivered in-person and online. At Kew, she also worked on the State of the World’s Plants and Fungi reports and on the Reflora project.
Ahmed M. Abdel-Azeem (Member)
Ahmed is a professor of mycology at botany and Microbiology Department, Faculty of Science, Suez Canal University in Egypt. He is the founder of Arab Society for Fungal Conservation and executive Committee member of IMA (2018-2022). He is a Founder member of International Society for Fungal Conservation, Member in European Mycological Association, Member in Mycological Society of America. Abdel-Azeem founded Egypt's National Fungus day and many mycologists' networks like Egyptian, Iraqi , Algerian and Pakistani networks. He is the founder of Pan Arab Mycologists.
ِAbdel-Azeem with particular interest in the ecology, taxonomy, biology, and conservation of fungi and his specialist interest is members of the phylum Ascomycota. He is a member of the IUCN Species Survival Commission Specialist Group for Cup Fungi, Truffles & their Allies.
Aida Marcela (Member)
Aída is a Colombian mycologist. Currently, she works for the School of Microbiology at Universidad de Antioquia UdeA (Medellín, Colombia) where she conducts research and teaching on fundamental and applied mycology. She is broadly interested in diversity, ecology, and systematics of tropical fungi, mainly macrofungi. Recently, she is also exploring the potential use of these fungal diversity. Aída, is the fungal curator of the Microorganism collection (CM-EM-UdeA), at Universidad de Antioquia UdeA. At present, she is also the chairwoman of the Colombian Association of Mycology (ASCOLMIC 2020-2022). Aída is part of the Mushroom, Bracket and Puffball and Cup-fungi, Truffles and Allies specialist groups -IUCN.
Andrew Anak Ngadin (Member)
Andrew is the founder and managing director of SJBio. He has collaborated with several scientists and institutions in Asia and Europe. His research focuses on fungal interactions, edible fungi cultivation, agroforestry and fungal conservation. He has done several research projects including biosynthetics of white-rot fungi (WRF) for dye removal in contaminated environments and protected fungi species in Southeast Asia (SEAsia). He has lead the development of the Fungal Conservation Committee (FunCC) website as well as establishing the Fungal Red List Project in Southeast Asia as a project leader. He is also a member of the IUCN SSC FunCC, and the Mushroom, Bracket and Puffball Specialist Group. He started volunteering since 2020 to educate children using his first book on a very rare fungus species found for the awareness and its protection in Southeast Asia.
David Minter (Member)
David is Chair of the IUCN SSC Cup Fungus, Truffle and Allies Specialist Group. A professional mycologist specializing in non-lichen-forming ascomycetes and their conservation, he maintains the Cybertruffle website and mycological databases. A Corresponding Member of the Academy of Sciences of Cuba, Honorary Member of the Latin-American Mycological Association, founder member and former President of the European Mycological Association, and President of the International Society for Fungal Conservation, he has carried out fieldwork and projects in many countries, including Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Cuba, India, Russia, South Africa, Trinidad and Tobago, Ukraine and Venezuela.
Jessica Allen (Member)
Jessica is an assistant professor in the Department of Biology at Eastern Washington University (Cheney, WA, USA). Research in her lab focuses on the diversity, genomics, and conservation of lichenized fungi. She also teaches courses in mycology, botany, and bioinformatics and curates the cryptogam herbarium at EWU. Jessica currently serves as co-chair for the SSC Lichen Specialist Group and is a Member-at-Large for the American Bryological and Lichenological Society.
Marieka Gryzenhout (Member)
Dr Gryzenhout is passionate about studying fungi (mycology). Her mycology career started when she developed a world monograph of the important tree pathogen fungal family Cryphonectriaceae. Her research instilled in her a hunger to discover fungal species, describe them and untangle taxonomic problems using a practical approach and making the knowledge available to diverse end-users who do not necessarily have the appropriate skills and background. Her current position as biosystematist in the Department of Genetics at the University of the Free State, is conducive to follow her research ideals. Currently she is working closely with a group of enthusiastic citizen mycologist from across South Africa. While they collect she helps by sequencing their samples towards joint identifications. With their help, two mushroom field guides have already been published, with one reviewed and just released with ten more species included. She also has a culture collection and studies are being conducted on these cultures and macrofungal herbarium specimens to look at various possible biotechnologicaly applications. Currently she published 85 international peer reviewed articles, three books (one has been revised and released again) and four book chapters.
Mayra Camino Vilaró (Member)
Mayra is a scientific researcher in the Mycological Laboratory of the National Botanical Garden Cuba, Havana. She is an expert in myxomycete systematics and is a founding member of the Latin American Association of Mycology (ALM). She has been a researcher at the National Botanic Garden since 1985 and was the curator of the Fungarium (HAJB) from 1987 to 1992. Mayra is the co-chair of the IUCN SSC Chytrid, Zygomycete, Downy Mildew and Myxomycete Specialist Group.
Teodor T. Denchev (Member)
Teodor is Associate Professor of Mycology at the Institute of Biodiversity and Ecosystem Research, Bulgarian Academy of Sciences, Sofia, and Head of the Mycology Laboratory. He has a long-standing interest in phylogeny and taxonomy of the smut fungi at global scale. He has published monographs on the smut fungi of Greenland, and Anthracoidea in Japan and Korea. He also maintains an ongoing research interest in monitoring and conservation of fungal diversity, assessment of conservation status of plant parasitic fungi, and redlisting. Teo is Red List Authority Coordinator of the IUCN SSC Rusts and Smuts Specialist Group.
Tetiana Kryvomaz (Member)
Professor of Environmental Protection Department of Kyiv National Construction and Architecture, Doctor of Technical Science University, PhD in Biological Sciences. Main direction of scientific research - tropical myxomycetes on isolated islands (La Reunion, Seychelles, Maldives, Guadeloupe, Martinique), nivicolous myxomycetes in Alps, heavy metal accumulation by myxomycetes, climate change. Leader and founder of NGO Ukrainian Ecological Society, Founder member of International Society for Fungal Conservation, Member in European Mycological Association, Co-Chair of the Chytrid, Zygomycete, Downy Mildew, Slime Mould Specialist Group of IUCN
Tom May (Member)
Dr Tom May is a Principal Research Scientist (Mycology) at Royal Botanic Gardens Victoria in Melbourne, Australia. Tom has a passion for increasing knowledge and conservation of fungi. He has published widely on fungal taxonomy, nomenclature, ecology and conservation, and on the history of mycology, including checklists of Australian fungi, the FunKey app (interactive key to agaric genera) and Wild Mushrooming. Tom is active in science and citizen science organisations, co-founding Fungimap (the Australian fungi NGO), and currently serving as Secretary of the Nomenclature Committee for Fungi and as a member of the International Commission on the Taxonomy of Fungi.
Susana C. Goncalves (Member)
Susana is a researcher at the Centre for Functional Ecology - Science for People and the Planet, at the University of Coimbra, Portugal. The research in her lab focuses on the diversity and ecology of fungi, their uses and conservation, including in applied contexts. She also keeps an active outreach program, celebrating the fungi to boost conservation. Susana is the chair of the European Council for the Conservation of Fungi (ECCF) and a member of the IUCN SSC Fungal Conservation Committee and Mushroom, bracket, and puffball Specialist Group. If not in the office or lab, you´ll probably find her looking for mushrooms somewhere around town.
Zhu L. Yang (Member)
Zhu L. Yang is professor at Kunming Institute of Botany (KIB) of the Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS). He is the director of the CAS Key Laboratory for Plant Diversity and Biogeography of East Asia. His team focuses on systematics, biogeography and conservation of macrofungi. With over 50,000 collections made by the team, the mycological herbarium of KIB has become the second largest mycological herbarium in China. He was awarded an honorary member of the Mycological Society of America in 2019. He serves as editor-in-chief of Fungal Diversity, and an editorial board member of Fungal Biology Reviews, Mycological Progress, etc.
F u n C C
This video is to introduce FunCC to the public and our role in conserving fungi globally