Dr. Chinsamy-Turan’s work has been recognized by several highly acclaimed awards: for example, in 1995, she was awarded the National Research Foundation’s President’s Award, and in 1997/1998 she received the Royal Society of South Africa’s Meiring Naude Gold Medal for Research Excellence. In 2003 she won the National Science and Technology Forum Award for outstanding contributions to science engineering and technology, and in 2005, she won the Distinguished Women Scientist Award from the South African Department of Science and Technology, and the South African Woman of the Year Award which acknowledges her contributions to science both in terms of research and science communication.
Dr. Chinsamy-Turan has published extensively – both in international scientific journals (including four publications in Nature) and in the popular press. She is President of the Association of South African Women in Science and Engineering, and has also served as the Director of Iziko Museums Natural History Collections (which includes the South African Museum) where she was able to actively pursue her interests in communicating science to the wider community. Dr. Chinsamy-Turan is also a Fellow of the Royal Society of South Africa and the University of Cape Town. She is the author of the first book devoted entirely to fossil bone microstructure: The Microstructure of Dinosaur Bone – Deciphering Biology Through Fine Scale Techniques (Johns Hopkins University Press, 2005) which has been internationally acclaimed. Her latest book, published in 2008, is entitled Famous Dinosaurs of Africa and is specifically written to educate and excite children about the fabulous African heritage of dinosaurs.
Dr. Ősi is the head of a vertebrate paleontological research group at the Hungarian Academy of Sciences in Budapest, Hungary. He received his Ph.D. from Eötvös Loránd University in 2007. He is one of the discoverers of the Upper Cretaceous Iharkút vertebrate locality in western Hungary, and has conducted systematic excavations at this important European site during the last 14 years. Here, he and his colleagues have revealed a unique, Santonian-aged (~85 million-year-old) vertebrate fauna that includes Hungary’s first dinosaurs.
In addition to working at Iharkút, Attila has also participated in paleontological field research in Argentina, China, and Spain. His general research interests focus on the paleobiological and paleobiogeographical aspects of archosaurs. He is especially interested in archosaurian jaw mechanisms and dental function, as well as the biogeographic history of late Mesozoic terrestrial vertebrates in the western Tethyan archipelago.
Dr. Paulina Carabajal (nicknamed “Premji”) is a dinosaur paleontologist at the Instituto de Investigaciones en Biodiversidad y Medioambiente (INIBIOMA), CONICET-Universidad Nacional del Comahue in the town of San Carlos de Bariloche in Rio Negro Province, northern Patagonia, Argentina. She received a Ph.D. in natural sciences from the Universidad de La Plata in 2009 under the supervision of Drs. Zulma Gasparini (Universidad de La Plata) and Phil Currie (University of Alberta).
Premji studies the cranial and endocranial morphology of dinosaurs to understand the paleobiological implications of these anatomical regions as well as their impact on the evolution of the group. Her research also includes collaborations on the paleoneurology of Argentinean pterosaurs and fossil crocodyliforms.
Premji´s general research interests include the morphology, evolution, and paleobiogeography of theropod dinosaurs. She has participated in numerous field expeditions, mostly in Patagonia, but also in Alberta’s Dinosaur Provincial Park, Montana, the Gobi Desert, and Antarctica.
Dr. Curry Rogers is an Associate Professor of Biology and Geology at Macalester College in St. Paul, Minnesota, and is a Research Associate in Paleontology at the Denver Museum of Science and Nature, the Science Museum of Minnesota, and the Museum of the Rockies. She received her B.Sc. in Biology from Montana State University and her Ph.D. in Anatomical Sciences from Stony Brook University.
Kristi’s research is focused on the evolutionary history and paleobiology of the long-necked titanosaurs, a group of sauropod dinosaurs, as well as upon the signals of growth and life history recorded in bones of living and extinct vertebrates. Her work has taken her around the world in search of dinosaurs, from Argentina to Zimbabwe (and lots of places in between). Her most rewarding work thus far has been the detailed study of sauropod dinosaurs inhabiting the island of Madagascar, which resulted in the discovery of two new sauropod dinosaur genera, Rapetosaurus and Vahiny, as well as the tiniest sauropod baby yet known. Kristi has been the recipient of an NSF CAREER grant aimed an an investigation of the effects of environmental stress on growing bones. She’s appeared on screen in programs by Nova Science Now, BBC Horizon, the National Geographic Channel, and the Discovery Channel. When not studying fossils, Kristi’s practicing and teaching yoga as a certified yoga teacher, or hanging with her daughter Lucy (age 13) and her husband Ray (also a Macalester Geology professor and collaborator) in Montana.
Dr. Gold is a postdoctoral researcher and instructor in the Department of Anatomical Sciences at Stony Brook University. She received her Ph.D. in Comparative Biology from the Richard Gilder Graduate School, at the American Museum of Natural History in 2015. She also received an M.S. in Geosciences from the University of Iowa in 2011, a B.S. in Geology and a B.S. in Biology from the University of Maryland in 2008.
Dr. Gold’s research focuses on the neuroanatomical changes that occur in dinosaurs as they acquire the ability to fly. She uses two high resolution imaging techniques for her research: Computed Tomography (CT) to image the skulls of theropods and recreate their endocasts and Positron Emission Tomography (PET) scanning to image the brains of living birds. She uses geometric morphometric techniques to analyze changes in shape in the endocasts of theropods.
Additionally, Dr. Gold created and runs DrNeurosaurus.com – a bilingual (English and Spanish) blog for kids about paleontological news.
Dr. Randall Irmis is the Chief Curator and a Curator of Paleontology at the Natural History Museum of Utah and an Associate Professor in the Department of Geology & Geophysics at the University of Utah. Randall grew up in the suburbs of Chicago, Illinois and then moved west for university, where he graduated magna cum laude from Northern Arizona University with a BS in Geology (Emphasis in Paleontology) and received his PhD in Integrative Biology from the University of California, Berkeley in 2008.
Randall’s research asks how vertebrate animals living on land evolved through deep time, particularly in response to climate change and other extrinsic events. Much of his research has focused on the beginning of the age of dinosaurs, the Triassic Period. He is interested in how ecosystems changed during this time, and why dinosaurs become so successful while other animal groups died out? This research has resulted in many field seasons at Ghost Ranch in New Mexico, where critical fossils have been found documenting this early time of dinosaur evolution, as well as in similarly aged rocks in Utah, Arizona, Argentina, and Ethiopia. Irmis is also leading a long term field project in the Late Cretaceous of Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument (Utah), where his team is investigating why this area had such unique dinosaur and other vertebrate species 80-75 million years ago, despite a lack of physical barriers.
As a graduate student, Randall was fortunate to receive funding from the Jurassic Foundation, and he is excited to support the next generation of paleontologists as a board member.
Lindsay Zanno (Jurassic Foundation President)
Dr. Lindsay Zanno is Head and Curator of Paleontology at the North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences and an Assistant Research Professor at North Carolina State University. Zanno received a B.S. in Biological Anthropology from the University of New Mexico (summa cum laude, 1999), a M.S. in Geology (2004), and a Ph.D. in Geology (2008) from the University of Utah. Her lab uses active field explorations, comparative phylogenetic methods, and next-generation visualization approaches to reconstruct the lost biodiversity and paleobiology of Mesozoic ecosystems including complex transitions in dietary ecology, social/sexual selective forces, and key novelties in dinosaur evolution.
Despite over 17 years of international expedition experience, Zanno has a soft spot for the American West from where she has described many new species, including Siats meekerorum, one of the largest meat-eating dinosaurs discovered on the continent. Her North American expeditions gather data on faunal dynamics during the Cretaceous—a time period bracketed by biotic turnover associated with the establishment of a transarctic land bridge and terminating with remarkably high species diversity linked to tectonic evolution of the Western Interior Basin.
Zanno’s work garners worldwide media attention and has been featured extensively by notables such as the Science Channel, History Channel, National Geographic, New York Times, NPR, and the BBC. She was recently featured as Science Advocate for the Walking With Dinosaurs Arena Spectacular, on-air host for The Ice Age Exhibition, and coordinates several paleontology-focused citizen science and STEM education projects. In 2012 she launched the real-time social media platform—Expedition Live! connecting the public with paleontologists in the field. Zanno’s published impact ranges from top science journals such as Nature to everyday Tweets, including over 120 technical works and a children’s book on the cycle of life.
Matt Lamanna (Jurassic Foundation Past-President)
Dr. Lamanna is an Assistant Curator of Vertebrate Paleontology and the principal dinosaur researcher at Carnegie Museum of Natural History in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, and an Adjunct Assistant Professor in the Department of Geology and Planetary Science at the University of Pittsburgh.
Originally from the Finger Lakes region of upstate New York, Matt received his Ph.D. from the University of Pennsylvania in 2004. His research interests involve exploring the effects of large-scale geographic and environmental changes on dinosaur evolution, distribution, and diversity, especially in the Southern Hemisphere continents. Within the past 18 years, he has directed or co-directed field expeditions to Antarctica, Argentina, Australia, China, Egypt, and Greenland that have resulted in the discovery of multiple new species of dinosaurs and other Cretaceous vertebrates. Foremost among these finds is one of the largest land animals ever discovered, a 95-million-year-old titanosaurian sauropod (long-necked plant-eating dinosaur) from Egypt that Matt and colleagues named Paralititan stromeri in 2001. The discovery of Paralititan received extensive media coverage and was documented in The Lost Dinosaurs of Egypt, a film that aired on the A&E network in 2002. Matt also consulted on and narrated The Science Channel’s documentary Rise of the Feathered Dragons, which chronicled his team’s discovery of exquisite new specimens of the Early Cretaceous bird Gansus yumenensis in northwestern China. He has appeared on other programs for PBS (NOVA), the Discovery Channel, the History Channel, and more.
Matt served as the principal scientific advisor to Carnegie Museum of Natural History’s $36M Dinosaurs in Their Time exhibition renovation project. In 2014, he led a team that named Anzu wyliei, the most complete oviraptorosaurian theropod yet found outside of Asia, and co-authored a paper that named another giant titanosaur species, Dreadnoughtus schrani. Most recently, in early 2016, he co-named two more new titanosaurs from Argentina, Notocolossus gonzalezparejasi and Sarmientosaurus musacchioi. Apart from paleontology, he enjoys fishing, watching football, working out (not frequently enough), and irritating his neighbors by playing guitar. Matt was Jurassic Foundation President from 2009 to 2016.
Victoria Arbour (Jurassic Foundation Communications Director)
Dr. Victoria Arbour is an NSERC postdoctoral researcher at the Royal Ontario Museum and University of Toronto in Ontario, Canada. She received her BSc from Dalhousie University in her hometown of Halifax, Nova Scotia, completed an MSc and PhD at the University of Alberta in Edmonton, and was the Brimley Postdoctoral Scholar at the North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences and North Carolina State University in Raleigh, North Carolina.
Victoria is a world-leading expert on the armoured dinosaurs known as ankylosaurs. These dinosaurs had unusual tails that were modified into axe-like weapons, and Victoria’s work has covered the evolutionary origin of ankylosaur tail clubs, the biomechanics of tail club impacts, and what features constrain the evolution of tail weapons. Her research also investigates the biogeography of dinosaurs and how changing climate influenced dinosaur distributions in North America and Asia. Victoria and her colleagues have named two new species of ankylosaur, Ziapelta sanjuanensis from New Mexico, and Zaraapelta nomadis from Mongolia. She helped create the massive open online course Dino 101, reaching over 70 000 learners around the globe. She was also featured in the recent television documentary Dino Hunt Canada, and has served as a scientific consultant for the film Walking with Dinosaurs 3D, the documentary Clash of the Dinosaurs, and the upcoming video game Saurian.