Dr. Kathryn (Kate) M. Rodriguez-Clark

Posted: June 20, 2018 at 4:30 pm, Last Updated: June 20, 2018 at 4:44 pm

Kate recently joined the National Zoo after more than 15 years as a staff scientist in the Population Ecology and Genetics Lab at the Instituto Venezolano de Investigaciones Científicas (IVIC), in Caracas, Venezuela. She started at IVIC fresh out of graduate school at Cambridge and Princeton, and followed her time there with two years as an associate researcher at the Venezuelan conservation NGO Provita. Her PhD research focused on examining the effects of modern zoo population management on quantitative genetic variation in captivity and the wild, and her early work in Venezuela focused on helping zoos there develop an effective ex-situ conservation strategy for Andean bears, taking into account both wild and captive population pressures. In her new role as a National Zoo Secretary Scholar, Kate collaborates with colleagues across the Smithsonian and around the world to understand and manage the demographic and genetic challenges faced by NZP/SCBI’s huge diversity of ex situ populations, in order to ensure the integration and success of the Smithsonian’s in situ and ex situ conservation efforts.