Dr. Yaptinchay has been involved in marine biodiversity conservation in the Philippines for over 25 years. He is the director and founder of the conservation NGO, Marine Wildlife Watch of the Philippines. He has a Doctor of Veterinary Medicine Degree from the University of the Philippines and a Masters of Science Degree in Aquatic Tropical Ecology from Bremen University, Germany. He has worked with the Department of Environment and Natural Resources-Biodiversity Management Bureau as a biologist and WWF-Philippines as their Species Conservation Program Director. He sits on the board of other NGOs including balyena.org, Reef Check Philippines, CAPE Foundation, Responsible Tourism Philippines, and Society for Sustainable Tourism. He is a member of the International Union for the Conservation of Nature – Species Specialist Group on Sirenians, an Adjunct Assistant Professor at the University of the Philippines in Los Banos, sits on the editorial board of The Philippine Journal of Fisheries, and is part of the Philippine Aquatic Red List Committee of the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources.