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Professional photo of ecologist Kai Zhu from the University of California Santa Cruz, a 2021 Early Career Fellow of ESA

Meet Kai Zhu

Kai Zhu is an assistant professor of environmental studies at the University of California Santa Cruz. His research interests include global change ecology, ecological modeling and environmental data science. In 2021, Kai was named an Early Career Fellow of ESA. Kai was elected a fellow based on work blending classical ecological theories with modern computational tools to study global issues…

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A posed professional photo of Stacy Philpott

Meet Stacy Philpott

Dr. Stacy Philpott completed her Bachelor of Science degree at the University of Washington, and then went on to complete her Ph.D. in ecology and evolutionary biology at the University of Michigan. For her outstanding contributions in ecology, specifically in the areas of agroecology, trophic interactions, community assembly, insect ecology, and relationships between biodiversity and ecosystem services; and for significant…

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Meet Mahi Puri

Mahi Puri is a Ph.D. student focusing her research on prioritizing and identifying opportunities for carnivore conservation in human-dominated landscapes in India. She cares deeply about wildlife conservation as she has been working on these issues for the last 13 years. She was awarded the 2020 Murray F. Buell Award, for her work, “The balancing act: Maintaining leopard-wild prey equilibrium…

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Meet Erika Zavaleta

Dr. Erika Zavaleta is a community and ecosystem ecologist.  She received her BA and MA in and Ph.D. in biological sciences from Stanford University.  At UC Santa Cruz, she is a professor in the Ecology and Evolutionary Biology Department. There, she and her research group study the drivers and consequences of shifting biological diversity and the role of ecology in…

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Meet Kimberly With

Kimberly With has been a member of ESA and the Theoretical Ecology Section since 1992. Dr. With is a two-time recipient of the “Outstanding Paper” award from the U.S. Regional Chapter of the International Association for Landscape Ecology (now IALE-North America) and was recognized as a Distinguished Landscape Ecologist in 2016, which is the highest honor bestowed by that organization….

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Former ESA president Steward Pickett speaks with young women ecologists at an Annual Meeting

Meet Steward Pickett

Dr. Steward Pickett has been a member of ESA since 1972. A native of Louisville, KY, his work in several different fields in ecology have afforded him amazing research experiences in old growth forests, the Negev Desert, Kruger National Park in South Africa, Baltimore, and rapidly changing cities in China. In 2011, he became ESA’s first Black president. After some…

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Meet Anjali Boyd

Anjali Boyd is a marine ecologist, educator, entrepreneur, and elected official. Anjali received her B.S. in Marine Science as an NOAA Hollings Scholar from Eckerd College in St. Petersburg, Florida. She is currently a Duke University Ph.D. student and Dean’s Graduate Fellow in the Nicholas School of the Environment. Anjali’s research examines how species interactions (both intra and inter) and…

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Meet Tom Wentworth

Dr. Tom Wentworth is a plant community ecologist and Professor Emeritus in the Department of Plant and Microbial Biology at North Carolina State University. He has been a member of ESA’s Panel for Vegetation Classification since 2016 and is also a member of its Executive Committee, which helps direct the panel’s priorities and activities. Since first joining ESA in 1974,…

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Meet Mark Vellend

Dr. Mark Vellend is a professor at the Université de Sherbrooke in Quebec and a 2020 ESA Fellow. Since the start of his career, Dr. Vellend has been interested in long-term changes in the composition and diversity of plant communities, especially the role of past human land use and ongoing climate change.  A 2013 meta-analysis that he was a part…

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Meet Monica Turner

Dr. Monica G. Turner is the recipient of ESA’s Eminent Ecologist Award for 2020. After she received her PhD, Dr. Turner worked with Eugene Odum to examine changes in the Georgia landscape in one of the earliest U.S. landscape ecology studies. Afterwards, she went on to become a scientist at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory, where she began working on…

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