Lizzie King

Associate Professor, Ecosystem Ecology & Management
Warnell School of Forestry

Inspired by parents who also had a passion for science and conservation, Dr. Elizabeth King knew from a young age she wanted to have a career in biology. It was an easy decision to follow up her biology undergrad and master’s degrees with a Fulbright scholarship that took her all the way to Kenya. There, her dissertation work involved studying the ecology and conservation of a certain species of aloe that, when planted, could facilitate grass growth and create “islands of fertility” on otherwise poor land. The applications of King’s research in Kenya were especially far reaching, as these new grass patches offered a food source for the area’s pastoralists to feed their livestock. Additionally, the aloe’s sap contained medicinal properties that could be harvested and sold in local markets. To this day, King has continued to visit Africa and study social-ecological systems, specifically conducting research on sustainable pastoralist systems.

by Cammie Caldwell