Meet Our People


Dr. Charlie Robbins with a bear.

Dr. Charles Robbins

Founder and Director of Research
Gay Lynn Clyde.

Gay Lynn Clyde, DVM

Director of Operations

Bear Center Faculty

Dr. Charles feeding cub.

Dr. Charles Robbins

Interests: Nutrition and Ecology
Dr Heiko Jasen

Dr. Heiko Jansen

Interests:  physiology
Joanna Kelly.

Dr. Joanna Kelley

Interest: genetics

Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology
The University of California Santa Cruz

Bear Center Staff

Bear Center Manager Chelsea Davis

Chelsea Davis

Animal Care Facilities Manager

Campus Veterinary Support Staff

Nina Woodford in a grassy field with two bear cubs.

Nina Woodford, DVM, MPH, DACLAM

Director & Attending Veterinarian
Office of the Campus Veterinarian
Gay Lynn Clyde.

Gay Lynn Clyde, DVM

Assistant Director – Campus Veterinary Services
Office of the Campus Veterinarian
Jessie May McCleary using a stethoscope on a sedated bear in a Bear Center enclosure.

Jessie McCleary, LVT

Veterinary Specialist II
Office of the Campus Veterinarian

Current Students

Ellery Vincent

Ellery Vincent

Project: The link between circadian gene rhythmicity and cellular metabolism during hibernation
Amelia Christian sitting in front of panda enclosure.

Amelia Christian

Texas A&M University, Department of Rangeland, Wildlife, and Fisheries Science

Project: Nitrogen Metabolism and the Adaptive Capacity of Carnivorous Bears

Heather Havelock

Research Scientists

Blair Perry PhD

Blair Perry Ph.D.

School of Biological Sciences, College of Arts and Sciences, Washington State University.
Functional genomics of hibernation and adaptation in bears

Graduate Student Alumni

Past graduate students work for a wide range of universities and state and federal agencies, including US Geological Survey, US Fish and Wildlife Service, and Alaska Department of Fish and Game. Depending on available projects and funding, we generally accept 1 or 2 new graduate students each year.

Tony Carnahan holding the head of a drugged bear with a helicopter in the background.

Tony Carnahan, Ph.D

Project: Energetics of grizzly bears
Anthony Pagano

Anthony Pagano, Ph.D.

Polar Bear Biologist, USGS, Anchorage

Project: Nutrition, Energetics, and Ecology of Polar Bears 
Heather Keepers

Heather Keepers

Animal Care Facilities Manager
Brandon clicker training the bear Frank.

Brandon Evans Hutzenbiler

Animal Care Facilities Manager
Hannah Hapner

Hannah Hapner

Project: Seasonal changes in energy metabolism of adipocytes in grizzly bears
Michael holding three tiny bear cubs.

Michael Saxton

Bear Biologist, Katmai National Park

Projects: Genetic relatedness of brown bears in Katmai National Park.

Genetics of insulin resistance in hibernating grizzly bears
Joy Erlenbach sitting next to a drugged bear.

Joy Erlenbach

Bear Biologist, Kodiak National Wildlife Refuge

Prior Projects: Ecology of coastal brown bears in Katmai National Park

Effects of increasing visitor use on the behavior of coastal brown bears
Alexia Gee.

Alexia Gee

Prior Projects: Genetics of seasonal changes in grizzly bears

Genetics of insulin resistance in the liver of hibernating grizzly bears
Wolf nuzzling Shawn Trojahn's head.

Shawn Trojahn

Prior Projects: Genetics of muscle atrophy resistance in hibernating brown bears

Evolution of hibernation
Jamie Gehring

Jamie Gehring

Research Associate, Allen Institute for Cell Science, Seattle, WA

Prior Projects: Development of a protocol for the isolation and cultivation of brown bear adipocytes

Changes in seasonal regulation of insulin sensitivity, food intake and adipose biology in brown bears
Kim Rigano

Kim Rigano

Field Technician, Ecological Associates Inc. 

Prior Projects: Development of a protocol for the isolation and cultivation of brown bear adipocytes

Changes in seasonal regulation of insulin sensitivity, food intake and adipose biology in brown bears
Danielle Rivet, MS

Danielle Rivet, MS

University of Saskatchewan Ph.D. program

Studying drivers behind polar bear movement

Prior Project: Examining grizzly bear heart function and the systemic effects of a high saturated fat diet
Jennifer Fortin-Noreus, PhD with drugged bear

Jennifer Fortin-Noreus, MS, PhD

Grizzly Bear Biologist, US Fish & Wildlife Service

Faculty Affiliate, W.A. Franke College of Forestry & Conservation, University of Montana
Justin Teisberg with grizzly bear.

Justin Teisberg, PhD

Team Leader – Physiology & Nutrition

Grizzly Bear Biologist, US Fish & Wildlife Service
Karyn Rodes, PhD

Karyn Rode, MS, PhD

Research Wildlife Biologist, Alaska Science Center, USGS
Nutritional, physiological and population ecology of large mammals with particular focus on polar bears, black bears, grizzly bears, and Pacific walrus and anthropogenic effects on large mammals.
Jasmine Ware and two other researcher taking polar bear vitals.

Jasmine Ware, PhD

Polar Bear Biologist, Department of Environment, Government of Nunavut, Iqaluit, Canada
Grant Hildebrand kneeling next to drugged grizzly bear.

Grant Hildebrand, MS, PhD

Regional Chief of Natural Resources, Anchorage, AK, National Park Service
Troy Tollefson PhD

Troy Tollefson, MS, PhD

Nutritionist, Mazuri Exotic Animal Nutrition
Laura Felicetti, PhD

Laura Felicetti, PhD

Director of Recruitment, Outreach, & Admissions

Hutton Honors College, University of Indiana
David G. Hewitt, PhD

David G. Hewitt, MS, PhD

Leroy G. Denman, Jr. Endowed Director of Wildlife Research

Executive Director
Sean Farley with grizzly bear.

Sean D. Farley, MS, PhD

Wildlife Physiologist/Research Biologist, Alaska Department of Fish and Game
Christy Welch.

Christy Welch, MS

Professor, Big Bend Community College

 Biology and Botany

Michael Jacoby, MS

Quality Control and Site Safety Manager, Verdesian Life Sciences

Geoff Pritchard, MS

President, Bunch Grass Farm, Deary Idaho