Chief Conservation Scientist, Center for Biodiversity and Conservation, American Museum of Natural History
Dr. Eleanor Sterling is Chief Conservation Scientist at the Center for Biodiversity and Conservation at the American Museum of Natural History. She has over 30 years of field research and community outreach experience with direct application to biodiversity conservation in Africa, Asia, Latin America, and Oceania. She currently focuses on the intersection between biodiversity, culture, and languages; the factors influencing ecological and social resilience; and the development of indicators of well being in biocultural landscapes. She is a world authority on the aye-aye, a nocturnal lemur endemic to Madagascar and is collaborating on a project integrating biology and econometrics across multiple scales for sustainable wildlife trade management in Vietnam. Currently an adjunct professor at Columbia University in the Ecology, Evolution, and Environmental Biology department, Dr. Sterling also served there for ten years as Director of Graduate Studies. In 2012 she earned Columbia University’s Faculty Mentoring Award and in 2013 the Society for Conservation Biology’s Distinguished Service Award for teaching, mentoring, and research. In 2016 she received the Meritorious Research Award from IUCN’s Commission on Environmental, Economic, and Social Policy, and also Yale University’s prestigious Wilbur Lucius Cross Medal for distinguished scholarship, teaching, and public service. Dr. Sterling received her B.A. from Yale College, and M.Phil. and Ph.D. from Yale University.