Taku Mutezo is a versatile international environmental lawyer, conducting research and consultancy work in rural Manicaland, Zimbabwe.

Inspired by an innate quest for justice, Mutezo left her family and home at 19 to pursue her dream of studying law. Her path led her back home as the first lawyer employed by a wildlife conservation non-profit in Zimbabwe.

Mutezo has advocated for legislation and policy change, with a keen focus on pangolin, the most trafficked mammal on the planet. She drafted and advocated for legislation/policy including laws passed in 2020, stipulating a minimum mandatory sentence of 9 years, for crimes against endangered species. Mutezo developed the first virtual training and mobile applications on wildlife law while at Tikki Hywood Foundation. She co-authored “The Handbook for Prosecuting Wildlife Crime,” with over 50,000 copies distributed and shared with rangers, police, prosecutors and judiciary. These efforts translated into an increased conviction rate and set precedence for wildlife crimes.

Mutezo is the youngest board member for Nyanga National Park. She is also an alumna of the Mandela Washington Fellowship and the Women for the Environment – Africa Fellowship. Mutezo is a researcher in the Interdisciplinary Conservation Network at Oxford University. She is also a recipient of a grant from the U.S State Department, for her efforts to modify, change and advance environmental laws to protect waterways polluted by gold mining. Mutezo has been awarded the 2023 Groningen University Alumni of the Year Award for “exceptional contribution to society, inspiration to others and promise for the future.”