DENVER – Jan. 8 – The Denver Museum of Nature & Science is pleased to announce that Gabriela Chavarria, Ph.D., has been named vice president of research and collections. Dr. Chavarria brings more than 20 years of experience in managing teams of gifted professionals and innovative science programs, influencing policy, developing new scientific collections and leading scientists in research efforts both nationally and internationally.
“Gabriela is uniquely qualified to lead the Museum’s Research and Collections Division,” said George Sparks, Museum President and CEO. “She is a talented scientist and innovative leader, and I’m looking forward to working with her to ensure our ongoing success with conducting world-class research, exciting our community about science and nature, and overseeing our growing collections and the state-of-the-art facility that houses them.”
Dr. Chavarria is a recognized visionary leader in the scientific world. Most recently, she was senior science advisor and forensic science branch chief at the U.S. Fish and Wildlife National Forensics Laboratory in Ashland, Ore.
Growing up in Mexico City, Dr. Chavarria fell in love with bees at an early age. She has devoted her career to the conservation of native pollinators, especially bumble bees. Most recently her work as a wood anatomist focused on fighting the illegal trafficking of tropical hardwoods.
She received her bachelor’s degree in biology from the National Autonomous University of Mexico, and her master’s and Ph.D. in organismic and evolutionary biology from Harvard University, where she studied under E.O. Wilson, the researcher, naturalist, entomologist and two-time Pulitzer Prize winner. She has conducted research in more than 30 countries throughout the world. She serves on a number of boards and advisory councils, including Science Works Museum in Ashland and the Doris Duke Conservation Scholars at the University of California, Santa Cruz.
“I am honored and thrilled to join the ranks of the Denver Museum of Nature & Science and add a new level of scientific expertise and passion for scientific collections,” said Dr. Chavarria. “I look forward to being part of an institution that is training and mentoring the next generation of scientists.”