Allison Alberts, Ph.D.

Chief Conservation and Research Officer, Benirschke Chair

Dr. Allison Alberts serves San Diego Zoo Global as Chief Conservation and Research Officer and holds the Benirschke Chair of Research. She is responsible for ongoing conservation science activities at the San Diego Zoo, San Diego Zoo Safari Park, San Diego Zoo Institute for Conservation Research, and at field sites worldwide. In addition to guiding a wide variety of conservation initiatives, she oversees the Institute’s Administration and Operations functions, coordinates Compliance, and is involved in helping raise funds to support wildlife research and awareness of the issues facing endangered species.

As a reptile and amphibian specialist, Allison has participated in conservation programs for endangered iguanas in Costa Rica, Cuba, the Turks and Caicos Islands, and Fiji, as well as working with komodo dragons, sea turtles, desert tortoises, and native California frogs, lizards, and snakes. Much of her research has focused on the development of innovative techniques for restoring critically endangered species to the wild.

Allison holds bachelor's and doctorate degrees in biology from the University of California at Berkeley and San Diego, respectively, and has completed the Organization for Tropical Studies tropical ecology course at the Universidad de Costa Rica. She is an adjunct faculty member at San Diego State University and has authored over 100 scientific articles and technical reports and three books. Her work has been recognized by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the National Science Foundation, the American Association of Museums, and the Association of Zoos and Aquariums. She is also co-founder of the IUCN Iguana Specialist Group, and currently serves as President of the International Iguana Foundation.

SCIENCE AT WORK