4th Annual La Kretz Public Lecture
"The Global Amphibian Biodiversity Crisis", by Dr. David B. Wake, Professor of the Graduate School in Integrative Biology and Curator, Museum of Vertebrate Zoology, University of California at Berkeley
Sunday, April 07, 2013
4:00 PM - 5:30 PM
King Gillette Ranch, Calabasas
David B. Wake has been on the faculty at Berkeley since 1969. Retired from teaching since 2003, he maintains an active research program and continues as Curator of Herpetology at the Museum of Vertebrate Zoology, an institution that he directed for nearly three decades. Wake graduated from Pacific Lutheran University in Tacoma, Washington, and received his doctoral education at the University of Southern California.
The general question that has driven Wake’s research career is how lineages diversify at different hierarchical levels during their evolution. His emphasis has always been on amphibians, and particularly on salamanders, at a global scale. Dr. Wake has authored more than 380 scientific papers and books, many with an emphasis on the discovery of novel biodiversity. As a part of that work, he has discovered and described over 100 species that are new to science, including a dozen from California alone.
The plight of amphibians around the world and implications of their decline and disappearance were first brought to public attention by Wake in 1990. He was a co-founder and first Director of the international Task Force on Declining Amphibian Populations of the International Union for the Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources, and remains deeply involved in global amphibian conservation efforts.
Based on his work as a biodiversity and conservation scientist, Wake has been recognized globally and locally, including the 2012 Fellow’s Medal of the California Academy of Sciences. He is a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Sciences and the California Academy of Sciences, and is an elected member of the American Philosophical Society, the American Academy of Arts and Science, and the U.S. National Academy of Sciences.