Age: 47

Hometown: Johannesburg

Lucky Draw Prize:
For pledges of R5000 or more you could win two days with the EWT team in the Southern Drakensberg. This experience will include seeing all three of South Africa’s cranes plus the tagging of crane chicks with unique colour rings. Farm style accommodation is included.

A hamper of Rare African Wild Dog gin, Painted Wolf Wines, and various other EWT goodies


CEO of the Endangered Wildlife Trust

About Me:

Yolan Friedmann is currently the CEO of the Endangered Wildlife Trust (EWT www.ewt.org.za), one of the largest conservation NGOs in southern Africa.
Yolan has an academic background in Veterinary Nursing (Onderstepoort Veterinary Faculty, University of Pretoria), a BA in English and Communications, an MSc in Environmental Studies (WITS) and an MDP from the Gordon Institute for Business Science (University of Pretoria). Yolan was the first female recipient of the SAB Nick Steele Environmentalist of the Year award, which she won in 2011. She was also the winner of the CEO Most Influential Woman in Business and Environment award in 2012 in the Environmental category; the recipient of the 2012 Green Globe award and a finalist in the 2015 South Africa of the Year Award in the Conservationist of the Year category.

Yolan is involved in many levels of conservation leadership and development and chaired the IUCN South African National Member’s Committee and the Regional Advisory Committee of the IUCN’s Regional Office for Southern Africa for 2 terms. She was the first South African to serve as a Regional Councillor on the Council of the IUCN (International Union for Conservation of Nature) and co-chaired the IUCN’s Constituency Committee for four years. She is an Advisory Board member of the Ford Wildlife Foundation and of the Global Change Institute (Wits University); and served on the Board of the Institute of Directors South Africa (IoDSA) for 2 terms. She is a judge of the Ecologic Awards, having previously judged the Green Trust Awards for several years and was a member of the Committee of Inquiry tasked with investigating the possibility of a legal trade in rhino horn, reporting to the Minister of Environmental Affairs.

Yolan is an avid long-distance runner and competes with her dogs and horses in agility and dressage, respectively.

Personal / Sporting Achievements :

- Completed 15 Comrades Marathons with a PB of 8h27
- Completed two Washie 100 Mile races and was second lady home in the last one by 52 seconds
- Won the South African Dog Jumping Championships (and a range of other titles) with her Belgian Malinois Diva; she currently competes with 4 Belgian Malinois, all of whom have won various national events and championship titles
- Represented her province in multiple inter-provincial dog jumping events (and won) as well as in dressage with her horses
- Has competed in dressage and showing (equestrian sports) with multiple successes for most of her life

Reason for taking Challenge:

It is the perfect combination of sport, the outdoors and conservation, three of my driving passions in life. I have not done much trail running so this new challenge is really exciting for me and I look forward to being part of this fantastic event that has already done so much to support conservation!

No. of pledges: 33

Total Pledged: ZAR 25,200

View Pledges

Pledges for Rhino Peak Challenge 2019 have now closed. Details of how much money was pledged in total and how each of the participants met the challenge will be available online very soon.