December 12, 2017

Three winners have been selected in the 2017 Faces of Biology Photo Contest, sponsored by the American Institute of Biological Sciences (AIBS). This was the seventh year of the contest.

"More than ever, scientists need to communicate how scientific research is done," said Robert Gropp, Co-Executive Director of AIBS. "This photo contest has been effective in inspiring scientists, educators, and students to explore how they can communicate their work to a broader audience."

The contest is an opportunity for members of the scientific community to showcase the varied forms that biological research can take. The photos will be used to help the public and policymakers better understand the value of biological research and education.

First Place Winner--Gavin Culbertson

Gavin Culbertson of the Denver Botanic Gardens photographed Carla DeMasters identifying a plant as part of a restoration project. The effort focuses on restoring 5.5 acres of degraded riparian habitat outside of Denver, Colorado.

Second Place Winner--Katie Peterson

Katie Peterson, a graduate student at the University of Idaho, won Second Place. Her self portrait shows her sorting and counting spiders she collected at Craters of the Moon National Monument and Preserve in southern Idaho. Her research focuses on the evolution of isolated species in vegetated islands called kipukas that are surrounded by a harsh landscape of basalt lava flows.

Third Place Winner--Scott Dressel-Martin

Scott Dressel-Martin won Third Place for his photo documenting botanic specimen digitization. Katherine Fu, a Ph.D. student with Denver Botanic Gardens, images specimens from the Kathryn Kalmbach Herbarium of Vascular Plants. The specimen images and associated data are shared publicly through online portals expanding access to these valuable collections.

An upcoming issue of the journal BioScience will feature the first place photo on the cover and the second and third place photos in an article. All of the winners will receive a one-year membership in AIBS, including a subscription to BioScience. Culbertson will also receive $250.

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