Charles is a strategic conservation planner with a focus on protected area management planning and conservation finance. Much of his professional career was spent working for the UN in the context of global biodiversity agreements such as the Convention on Biological Diversity. He is a faculty affiliate at the University of Montana’s W.A. Franke College of Forestry and Conservation and teaches in the Protected Area Management Program. He is a member of the Executive Committee for the IUCN Transboundary Conservation Specialist Group, a member of the IUCN Connectivity Conservation Specialist Group and the Chair of the Working Group on Protected Areas for the Conservation Finance Alliance.
Charles was previously the Coordinator of the LifeWeb Initiative for the Convention on Biological Diversity in Montreal Canada (2012-2016), Head of the Protected Areas Programme at the UNEP World Conservation Monitoring Centre in Cambridge, UK (2006-2012), a consultant to the IUCN Protected Areas Programme from Cape Town South Africa (2003-2006), Co-Chair of the IUCN Transboundary Conservation Specialist Group (2003-2008), developer and manager of the Wilderness Information Network (wilderness.net) (1996-2003) and wilderness ranger for the US Forest Service in Washington State (1991-1995). Since 2016 he has worked as a consultant for various government agencies around the world; training park managers in management plan development (Seychelles, Poland, Slovakia, Croatia, USA) and designing and facilitating workshops for the USFS on visitor use management planning.