Who We Are
What is natural history?
We define natural history as the “…practice of intentional, focused attentiveness and receptivity to the more-than-human world, guided by honesty and accuracy.”
Why a Natural History Institute?
Natural History is as old as humanity—there have never been people without natural history. In recent years, however, natural history has been marginalized—many academic institutions have removed or shrunken natural history curricula—and the arts and humanities have too often been wrung out of remaining natural history programs.
The Natural History Institute provides leadership and resources for a revitalized practice of natural history that integrates art, science, and humanities.
The Natural History Institute engages the next generation of naturalists to reunite science, humanities, and art in the practice of natural history. We nurture hope by combining traditional observational tools and practices with modern technology and global information sharing to help people develop attitudes and skills to meaningfully connect with the natural world, and to contribute understanding and innovative solutions to the world’s most pressing environmental challenges. We provide easily accessible public programs, research facilities to document the biodiversity of the Mogollon Highlands ecoregion, and facilitate a national conversation on a renaissance of natural history generating creative ideas and proactive strategies for engagement.
You are invited to utilize the Institute as a place to collaborate on projects, share information, pursue research questions and ecological curiosities, and become inspired to better know the world around you.
Tom Fleischner, Ph.D., Executive Director
Bob Ellis, M.S., Program Director
Pat Zemer, Administrative Assistant
Becky McLemore, Collections Manager
Gelisa Senteno, Communications Assistant
Lisa Floyd-Hanna, Ph.D., Curator, Herbarium
Ty Fitzmorris, Curator, Entomology
Stephen Trombulak, Ph.D., Editor, Journal of Natural History Education and Experience
Paul Dayton, Ph.D.
Professor Emeritus of Oceanography, Scripps Institution of Oceanography, La Jolla, California
Harry Greene, Ph.D.
Emeritus Professor and Stephen H. Weiss Presidential Fellow, Cornell University, Ithaca, New York
Jeff Hardesty, M.S.
Conservationist; The Nature Conservancy (retired), Gainesville, Florida
Poet; Chancellor, Academy of American Poets, Mill Valley, California
Eileen Lacey, Ph.D.
Professor of Integrative Biology; Associate Director & Curator, Museum of Vertebrate Zoology, University of California, Berkeley, California
Nalini Nadkarni, Ph.D.
Professor of Biology, University of Utah, Salt Lake City, Utah
Reed Noss, Ph.D.
Florida Institute for Conservation Science, Orlando, Florida
Julia K. Parrish, Ph.D.
Associate Dean of Academic Affairs, College of the Environment, University of Washington, Seattle, Washington
Mary Power, Ph.D.
Professor of Integrative Biology, University of California, Berkeley; Past President, Ecological Society of America, Berkeley, California
Sarah Juniper Rabkin
Independent natural history writer and artist; former faculty, University of California, Santa Cruz, Soquel, California
Mitchell Thomashow, Ph.D.
Past President, Unity College; past Chair, Environmental Studies, Antioch University New England, Dublin, New Hampshire
Saul Weisberg, M.S.
Executive Director, North Cascades Institute, Bellingham, Washington
Board of Trustees
Conservationist, The Nature Conservancy (retired)
Proprietor, The Peregrine Book Company & The Raven Café; Entomologist