Rajesh is a forest ecologist, a development sector professional and an entrepreneur. He has a doctorate in forestry from the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies and his research focuses on mid-elevational Himalaya. He is the Founder and Executive Director of the Centre for Ecology Development and Research (CEDAR) a research and advocacy organisation, and Director of the Carbon Disclosure Project (CDP-India). He is Chairperson of Kumaon Grameen Udyog (KGU), a not for profit company which works with over 300 artisans in the Himalaya. Rajesh is also the Managing Director of two FMCG companies (M.G.Shahani & Co (Delhi) Ltd and Kreation Handicrafts) which are contract manufacturers of personal care products for several multinational companies. He is an Advisor to the Tata Trusts. Rajesh has worked extensively in the development sector and has headed CHIRAG – the largest grassroots NGO in Kumaon. He is on the boards of several development sector organisations across the Himalaya and in central India. He has published over 20 research papers and been the lead researcher for several research projects funded by the Department of Science and Technology, Ministry of Environment and Forests and several International research institutes.