The North America Section of the Society for Conservation Biology is excited to announce the start of its 2022 Board Election! The election will open on May 4th and end on Monday, June 6th.

SCB North America Section members will vote to fill five seats on the Board: Equity, Inclusion, and Equity Officer; Vice President for Education & Chapters; Chapters Representative; Student Representative; and Member-at-Large.

Not a member?

Learn more about the 2022 SCBNA Board candidates:

Equity, Inclusion & Diversity Officer

  • Brendan N Reid, PhD
    • Board Position: Equity, Inclusion & Diversity Officer
    • I have served as head of the SCBNA Allyship Committee since 2020. With the current EID officer (Gerald Singh), I coordinated a symposium on allyship at NACCB 2020 and initiated a video interview series highlighting the experiences of people from traditionally excluded groups in conservation. I would be honored to continue working with SCBNA on these projects. As the EID officer I would hope to serve as a conduit for all members of the Society to express their concerns and experiences, and I would work with the SCBNA board and coordinate with SCB global and outside organizations to plan effective initiatives that address these concerns at the society level and beyond.

Vice President for Education & Chapters

  • Martha Groom, PhD
    • Board Position: Vice President for Education & Chapters
    • I am endlessly fascinated by teaching and learning, and helping people gain capacities and understandings about conservation as a field and practice. I have been teaching conservation since the mid-1990s. Currently, I’m an active member of the Education committee, and have been on the parallel committee of SCB Global in the past. I am the lead author/editor of Principles of Conservation Biology (2006) in its third edition, and currently working on open source exercises in conservation. I co-founded and led a training program for graduate students in interdisciplinary pedagogy at UWB, and for the past nine years have served as the faculty lead of the undergraduate Doris Duke Conservation Scholars Program at the University of Washington. I have co-led many teaching workshops at NACCB and other conservation meetings, and will co-host an interactive session on conservation literacies at the NACCB at Reno this July. I am particularly interested in supporting exploration of the multiple literacies that could be promoted among conservation students today.

Chapters Representative

  • Alysha Cypher, PhD
    • Board Position: Chapters Representative
    • I currently serve on the SCBNA Board as the Chapters Representative and have been active with chapters since 2010. I believe chapters are an integral part of SCB that sets our organization apart from others. With a second term I would dedicate more time towards improving communication between chapters and the SCB structure and expand the reach of chapter events. Chapters rule!

Student Representative

  • Anna Weber
    • Board Position: Student Representative
    • Originally hailing from Michigan, Anna is currently a PhD candidate in the Biological Sciences Department at the University of New Orleans (Louisiana), with a focus on evolutionary biology and conservation genetics. Throughout her graduate and undergraduate career, she has gained considerable experience in organizing programs and events through multiple leadership roles. Most recently, she has pushed forward the initial efforts towards unionization of graduate students, faculty and staff at UNO through the United Campus Workers of Louisiana. She has also served as the president of UNO’s Biology Graduate Student Association, where she organized community service, outreach, and social events for graduate students. In all her service roles, Anna identifies the top priorities of group members and organizes programming that caters to those specific needs. She aims to provide “something for everyone”–relevant programming and resources for all disciplines and interests. As Student Representative, Anna hopes to serve as an advocate for her fellow students in the SCB North America section. She strives to enhance SCB’s tradition of providing an educational, inclusive, and welcoming environment for students, where they can be exposed to a broad variety of conservation disciplines, both within and outside academia.

Member at Large

  • Ashley Kidd, MS
    • Board Position: Member at Large
    • I have spent the last nine years discovering California’s kelp forests and contributing to ecosystem restoration through conservation aquaculture and field monitoring of the endangered white abalone and giant sea bass. I was a senior aquarist with the Aquarium of the Pacific before obtaining my Master’s in Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences at the University of Florida. My research focused on aquarium based sunflower star recovery after the extirpation of these species from California and Oregon, and am actively collaborating with academic, non profit and community groups to restore this species across its range. It was through my first aquarium exposure at the 2008 SCB in Tennessee that I found myself following this career path in the first place. I am currently serving on several organizing committees for the NACCB 2022 and it was suggested that I apply for a board position. After fourteen years working within our industry and interacting with the public and volunteers, I believe that my background and network will increase the depth of conservation voices and perspectives that will enrich the SCB board and their membership as a board member at large.
  • Lauren Jonaitis, MS
    • Board Position: Member at Large
    • I am interested in the Member at Large position because I have been involved with SCB North America (SCBNA) for the past 6 years. I currently serve on the Board as the Member at Large and the Communications Chair and would like to continue my involvement/initiatives. These initiatives include broadening outreach to underrepresented groups in conservation, and actively works to engage groups that have been historically marginalized. My current experience relates to SCBNA’s mission, as I am the Senior Conservation Director of Tropical Audubon Society (TAS), with the main priority to “conserve and restore South Florida ecosystems, focusing on birds, other wildlife and their habitats.” I work closely with local governments and other stakeholders / work towards fostering wise stewardship of native habitats, birds and other indigenous wildlife. In addition, through TAS, I work to advance a more meaningful community understanding of and appreciation for nature and our region’s unique environment and ecological relationships via robust education programs and cultivation of local conservation advocates.
  • Fred Van Dyke, PhD
    • Board Position: Member at Large
    • I would like to serve as Member at Large for the SCB Board to use the skills I have developed in organizational leadership to benefit other professionals engaged in conservation. My experience on many boards, not only as a trustee but as a board secretary, treasurer, and chair, can be of value to the SCB at this critical time when effective organizational leadership in conservation is much needed. I also have brought diversity to conservation efforts. As the former Executive Director of the Au Sable Institute, a non-profit conservation organization in Michigan, USA, I engaged the Little River Band of Ottawa Indians, a Native American Tribal Nation, as a conservation partner in using sculpin species as indicators of stream habitat quality for the US Forest Service. I added more women to our faculty at Au Sable to serve an increasingly female-dominated student body, and I persuaded scholars from Majority World countries like Uganda to teach Au Sable courses like Forest Ecology to provide our students with a global perspective on solving problems of forest restoration. Professionally I have also been involved in a great diversity of conservation science, including large mammals, bird and plant communities of tallgrass prairies, forest amphibians, endangered species, and restoration of northern US deciduous and coniferous forests. I have mastered skills in prescribed burning, methods of detecting presence, occupancy and abundance of rare species, and mitigation techniques to reduce negative effects of energy development and fossil fuel extraction on wildlife populations. I have authored over 40 peer-reviewed papers and book chapters on conservation, including recent publications in Restoration Ecology, PLoS One, and the third edition of a globally-used textbook on conservation biology, Conservation Biology: Foundations, Concepts, Applications (3rd edition, Van Dyke and Lamb, Springer 2020).

NACCB 2022 Registration is OPEN 🎉

We are happy to share that #NACCB2022 will be a hybrid conference with opportunities to participate in Reno, Nevada, and virtually!

The 2022 North America Congress for Conservation Biology’s theme is Restoring Connections and Building Resilience in a Changed World.  The conference will be held in Reno, Nevada, July 16-21, 2022 (scientific program takes place July 18 – 20). The scientific program will include plenary sessions, invited symposia, interactive sessions, poster sessions, and concurrent sessions of contributed oral presentations and speed presentations.

Register here and learn more about what is offered for each type of attendee at this year’s conference: http://ow.ly/bcQH50IvcZ1

+ Late Breaking Call for Abstracts – opening March 29 thru April 19!

Did you miss the first Call for Abstracts, but would still like to present at NACCB 2022? We’re opening a late-breaking Call for Abstracts and especially encourage speed and poster presentation submissions!

Review the criteria for selection for abstracts here on the full website.

Make a positive difference in conservation and give back to our community. Nominate yourself or someone else to serve on the Society for Conservation Biology North America (SCBNA) Board of Directors. 

We are inviting you to help us nominate SCB North America members (or yourself) to stand for election! We are especially interested in increasing equity and inclusion at all levels, including on the board, and encourage nominations of individuals from historically underrepresented groups. Each nominee must be a current member of SCBNA and demonstrate relevant skills and experience to the position being covered. After reviewing nominees, the SCBNA Nominations Committee will put forward the slate of candidates for each office and announce the start of the voting period.

The call for nominations is open now through April 11, 2022. See the attached Board Code of Conduct and the SCBNA Bylaws for position descriptions and expectations of board members, and refer to the SCBNA website for further information on the North America section and its activities. Please contact Megan Keville, megan.keville@scbnorthamerica.org with additional questions regarding these positions.

Nominations are open for:

  • President-Elect (5 year term total – 1 year as President-Elect, 2 years as President, 2 years as Past-President)
    • The President-Elect serves on the Executive Committee of the SCBNA Board, chairs the Conference Committee, and provides support for the President, including filling in as needed.  Chairing the conference committee includes playing a significant role in selecting the location for the upcoming NACCB as well as co-chairing the organizing committee for that meeting. Nominees for this position must have previously served on the SCBNA Board or another SCB Board (e.g., working group or SCB global board). For full descriptions of the other positions in the President Series (President and President-Elect), please see the Board Role Descriptions webpage.

  • Equity, Inclusion & Diversity Officer (3-year term)
    • The Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) Officer serves on the Executive Committee of the SCBNA Board, chairs the standing Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Committee, and participates regularly in quarterly board calls and meetings. The DEI Officer facilitates and carries out initiatives designed to promote equity, inclusion and diversity within SCBNA, and works to increase diversity, equity, and inclusion in the field of Conservation across all levels. This includes both mainstreaming diversity, equity and inclusion in all regular tasks and events (such as the biennial North American Congress for Conservation Biology) and carrying out special projects intended to mainstream diversity, equity and inclusion across the field of research and practice. The position requires exposure and experience in dealing with and addressing issues of diversity, equity, and inclusion in an institutional setting. We acknowledge that no one candidate will be able to fully understand and anticipate all experiences and impacts relevant for this role, so the position requires someone willing to work broadly across the board and society at large. The DEI Officer will also engage with the SCB Global DEI Officer and serve on the global DEI committee as we move towards 2026.

  • Chapters Representative (2-3-year term; must be a current or past member of an SCB chapter)
    • Currently, the SCBNA Chapters Representative serves as the North America (NA) Section Representative alongside other section representatives on the global SCB Chapters Committee (https://conbio.org/about-scb/who-we-are/committees/chapters).  As part of this role, one participates in chapters committee quarterly board calls and meetings and provides support to NA-based chapters through assisting with the chapter registration and/or new chapter formation processes, organizing chapter-focused events, programming and financial support at SCBNA’s biennial conferences, and communicating with chapters about other opportunities and resources available to Chapters. The Chapters representative also chairs the ad hoc North America Chapters Committee, which works to support NA chapters through the activities described above and maintains the NA Chapters webpage on the SCBNA website (https://scbnorthamerica.org/).
  • Vice President for Education & Chapters (3-year term)
    • To represent the wider membership of SCBNA at a board level and to assist in board activity as required. This position chairs the standing Education Committee and participates regularly in quarterly board calls and meetings. This position requires carrying out initiatives designed to promote the education—at all levels, including preparatory and continuing of the public, of biologists, and of managers in the principles and practices of conservation biology. This includes, but is not limited to, coordinating and promoting education-related programming at NACCBs.

  • Student Representative (2-3-year term; must be a student at the time of election in conservation biology or a closely related field and attending an accredited university or college)
    • The Student Representative chairs the ad hoc Student Affairs Committee, which organizes programs and events targeting undergraduates, graduates, and early career professionals in conservation or adjacent fields – some examples include a webinar series and programming at biennial conferences. The Student Representative also participates regularly in quarterly board calls and meetings. The Student Representative may also be involved in developing and organizing programming and conference planning for NACCB.

  • Member at Large (2-3 year term)
    • There are two Members at large positions on the SCBN Board of Directors. Members at large participate in quarterly board calls and meetings, and often participate on one or more SCBNA committees. The Member at Large position is an accessible point of entry into board service for those who have never served on a board.

Every board member attends one in-person meeting (some financial support may be possible) and 4-5 virtual SCBNA Board meetings per year plus performs committee work (e.g., meetings, writing).

Submit a Nomination

To submit a nomination please fill out the this Google Form for yourself or whoever you are nominating. We wish you the best of luck and hope you will take the courageous step to support the SCB North America section!

If you have any questions about the nomination process, please email us: mail@scbnorthamerica.org

You’re in luck!

A little groundhog wants to let you know that… We are extending our Abstract and Proposal deadline to February 18th (11:59pm PT) for the 2022 North American Congress for Conservation Biology (NACCB). Congrats if you’ve already submitted an abstract or proposal for NACCB 2022! However, we know that many could use a little extra time.

Contributing your ideas to #NACCB2022 can allow others to learn from you, broaden your networking circle, and also give you professional experience sharing your research. In addition, opportunities to explore our host city (Reno, Nevada) will be options for those interested!

Visit the Call for Abstracts page for criteria & requirements, and to submit your abstract.

Visit the Call for Proposals page for criteria & requirements, and to submit your session proposal.

We hope to see your submissions soon!

Join us on January 25th!

On this date, we will hold an Information Session for anyone interested to learn more about board and committee service with SCB North America!

Current board and committee members will discuss their experience, describe specific roles and committee priorities, and address any questions and concerns you might have.

If you’re on the fence about running for a board position or joining a committee, this is a welcoming and open forum to learn more with no commitments required!

A zoom registration link and time of the meeting will be published soon for your convenience.

We hope to see you there!

The NACCB 2022 Abstract and Bonus Proposal Submissions are now OPEN!

That’s right, we’re opening a bonus Call for Proposals for Workshops, Short courses, Symposia and Interactive sessions (plus a new Organized Networking Session!).

This new session gives you the opportunity to create a networking session open to all conference attendees! These sessions can be tailored to students, LGBTQA+ members, conservation disciplines, and endless other topics/target participants ⭐️

The submission deadline for both abstracts and proposals is February 4, 2022. If you didn’t get to submit a proposal in the Fall, you have another chance to do so this Winter.

We invite you to submit to share your ideas, research, and/or work!

You’ve got this 👏

Learn how to submit yours for NACCB 2022 here: http://ow.ly/FcBf50H8saO

Organized Networking Session Proposal information: http://ow.ly/z64150HaIAI

We would like to extend a warm welcome to the new SCBNA Communications Intern and Conference Assistant, Jules Duran!

Jules is currently applying to graduate programs focused on Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Justice in Environmental Conservation. She received a Bachelor’s degree in Wildlife Conservation from Virginia Tech and is from Washington, D.C. She also has a background in wildlife field biology and social media analytics.

We are very excited to have her helping with SCBNA communications and #NACCB2022!

To celebrate National Hispanic Heritage Month (September 15-October 15), we are taking the opportunity to highlight Latinx leaders working in conservation who inspire us!

Today we get to learn about Miriam Hernandez! We asked her about her career and her experiences as a Latina working in conservation.

Thank you again to the SCBNA team for featuring me in the Hispanic Heritage month profile! It’s an honor to be highlighted. I am the Finance Manager on the Society for Conservation Biology Global Services team and assist with finances and administrative operations of the Society. I am proud to be a Hispanic woman working for the Society and among many colleagues that care about conservation, protecting our planet and its flora and fauna and disseminating conservation practices around the world.

The Latinx community is vast and diverse with passionate people connected and committed to the protection and well-being of our Earth. To be a part of this community means to protect what we cherish and look out for one another. From my upbringing, I was taught that Earth provides everything we need to survive: food, shelter, water. Earth provides life so it is my, and our, purpose to take care of it, to be stewards of the Earth. I love being part of an organization that strives to make a difference in the world whatever way it can and cares about connecting scientists, students and professionals from all countries, backgrounds, beliefs. Everything from ICCBs and webinars to programs and journals, SCB aims to provide as many resources as possible for members. Knowing that I am a piece of the puzzle working to advance conservation efforts makes me feel proud and happy and I hope to be an example to others around me.


Thank you so much to Miriam for sharing with us!

Check out our profiles of other Latinx leaders in conservation who were generous enough to share their stories with us: Mayor Regina RomeroMirna Manteca, and Sergio Avila.

To celebrate National Hispanic Heritage Month (September 15-October 15), we are taking the opportunity to highlight Latinx leaders working in conservation who inspire us!

Today we are featuring Sergio Avila! We asked him to share about his career path and his experiences as a person of color working in conservation.

Sergio was born in Mexico City (1972) and grew up in Zacatecas, Mexico. He’s an immigrant to the United States, living in Tohono O’odham and Yaqui lands, known as Tucson, Arizona. He was first hired by the University of Arizona in 2004, and became a U.S. Citizen in 2016.  Sergio is a husband, son, brother, uncle and cousin; a trail runner; and an outspoken justice and equity advocate.

Sergio holds a Master’s degree (Arid Ecosystems Management & Wildlife Research) from University of Baja California; and a Bachelor’s in Biology (University of Aguascalientes), both in Mexico. For twenty-five years, Sergio has worked on regional conservation efforts along the U.S.-Mexico borderlands. His varied experience includes living with the Indigenous Tarahumara of the Sierra Madre (1998), and ranching communities of Sonora (2003), which transformed his vision of environmental stewardship and conservation. Avila tracked and studied borderland jaguars and ocelots in the southwest United States and northwest Mexico for 10 years. Two live encounters with jaguars in the mountains of Sonora were life-changing experiences that shaped Sergio’s personal and professional life. He has led efforts to protect Monarch butterflies’ migration, studied Cactus-ferruginous pygmy-owls in the Sonoran Desert, and mountain lion predation on bighorn sheep in Baja California. 

Throughout his career, Sergio has felt invisible, alone, and not represented in the environmental and conservation communities as a person of color, feeling forced to ‘code switch’ and ‘fit in’ in spaces, instead of feeling true belonging. While studying borderland jaguars and monitoring the impacts of border wall construction, Avila became directly aware of U.S. immigration policies and enforcement. Continued racial profiling, harrassement and threats by the U.S. Border Patrol caused Avila to stop jaguar research along the borderlands. Due to personal and professional events like those described above, Sergio left conservation science and now works with the Sierra Club as an advocate for equitable and inclusive outings programs that allow underrepresented communities to enjoy and protect Nature, elevate Traditional Ecological Knowledge, and shine a light to broader engagement opportunities than the typical scientific or recreational interests of the dominating white conservation movement.

Sergio admires Arizona Congressman and Chair of the Natural Resources Committee in U.S. Congress, Raul Grijalva. An inspiring leader, decision-maker and representative who demonstrates that conservation and care for the environment does not require an academic degree, diplomas or publications.


Thank you so much to Sergio for sharing his experiences with us. You can keep up with him by following him on Instagram.

Stay tuned to hear from more Latinx leaders in conservation this month! In case you missed it, check out our last highlights of Mayor Regina Romero and Mirna Manteca.