We are proud to announce that Jonathan D. Ballou received the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA)’s prestigious Devra Kleiman Scientific Advancement Award. This award, named for its first recipient Devra Kleiman, honors an individual’s long-term commitment to using science-based research and mentoring others. For more than three decades, Dr. Ballou’s pioneering work in conservation genetics has played an instrumental role in conservation of dozens of animal species, including golden lion tamarins.
Dr. Ballou worked closely for many years with the award’s namesake, Devra Kleiman, on golden lion tamarin conservation at the Smithsonian's National Zoo, where he was the first to create an electronic studbook that is still in use today for this species. Dr. Ballou went on to co-develop the analytical software used by zoos worldwide for the genetic and demographic management of ex situ populations of both threatened and non-threatened species. He is the co-author of “Introduction to Conservation Genetics,” the first, and very influential textbook in conservation genetics.
In June of this year, Dr. Ballou accepted our invitation to serve as “Special Advisor” on the Board of Directors of Save he Golden Lion Tamarin (SGLT). In that capacity he works with us to keep golden lion tamarins safe from extinction.