Paul Cryer was born in Zimbabwe in 1966.  After completing his BSc Zoology in South Africa, he travelled before joining the Wilderness Leadership School in KZN as a guide.  He worked with the School for 15 years,  becoming Branch Coordinator and Trails Manager,  initiating various educational programs for participants from local communities, as well as from South Africa, Europe and the USA, working with the Wilderness Foundation and SANParks.  Paul has been responsible for training many of the Wilderness Leadership School guides, some of whom are still guiding today. Paul is a Trustee of the Wilderness Leadership School.   

In 2005, Paul took up post graduate studies and completed an MSc in Environmental Management which resulted in a revised conservation strategy, as well as the first legal protection, for the iMfolozi Wilderness Area.  He chairs the iMfolozi Wilderness Area Steering Committee on behalf of Ezemvelo KZN Wildlife and is a member of the KZN Wild Dog Advisory Group. He has assisted with rhino security training and surveillance in the Hluhluwe-iMfolozi Park and is an Advisory Board member to the Ecological Citizen (a peer-reviewed journal) and a Trustee of the Wilderness Leadership School

Paul’s personal career interest is the expansion of conservation areas for priority species including elephant, rhino and wild dog. This area of ecology has included working with local South African communities to co-create innovative solutions to the socio-economic and environmental issues facing people and the environment. 

Currently he is the coordinator of the Applied Ecology Unit of the African Conservation Trust. 

Paul has travelled extensively in Southern Africa, Europe and the United States, with a particular emphasis on visiting wild places. He studied wilderness skills and mountaineering with the National Outdoor Leadership School in the Wyoming.