1. NatureServe
    Chief Scientist
    (703) 908-1889

    Dr. Healy Hamilton is Chief Scientist at NatureServe, a western hemisphere biodiversity information network focused on management and conservation of at-risk species and ecosystems. She is a biodiversity scientist with graduate degrees from Yale and the University of California, Berkeley, and extensive field experience in the tropical forests of Latin America. At NatureServe, Dr. Hamilton leads a staff with expertise in ecology, zoology, botany, conservation, data science, and information management. Together they deliver foundational information on the distribution, conservation status and trends of species and their habitats. She is also a world expert on the taxonomy and evolution of seahorses and their relatives. Dr. Hamilton is an elected Executive Committee member of the IUCN U.S. National Committee, an Honorary Fellow of the World Conservation Monitoring Centre, a contributor to the IUCN Species Survival Commission for Seahorses and Pipefish, and a member of the Key Biodiversity Areas Committee. She is the recent past President of the Society for Conservation GIS, a Switzer Foundation Environmental Leadership fellow, and a former U.S. Fulbright Scholar.

  1. NatureServe
    Chief Zoologist & Senior Conservation Scientist
    (703) 908-1805

    Bruce Young has over 20 years of experience in biodiversity conservation throughout the Americas. He coordinates NatureServe’s Botany and Zoology programs, the premier source for conservation status information for over 36,000 North American species. Dr Young has led or co-led projects to develop digital distribution maps of all Western Hemisphere birds, mammals, and amphibians; assess the extinction risk of the world’s amphibians; and map the distribution of endemic plant and animal species and ecological systems of the Eastern Andean Slope and the Amazon Basin in Peru and Bolivia in support of conservation planning in the region. More recently he has turned his attention to the threat that climate change poses to biodiversity, developing a popular index to rapidly assess the vulnerability of species to climate change and leading an effort to share lessons learned and develop priorities for the incorporation of climate change into tropical conservation planning. Dr. Young holds a B.A. in Biology from Cornell University and a Ph.D. in Zoology from the University of Washington, and has published 44 papers in scientific journals.

  1. NatureServe
    Chief Ecologist
    (703) 797-4802

    Patrick J. Comer is Chief Ecologist, NatureServe, responsible for coordinating initiatives to develop a classification of terrestrial and palustrine ecosystems across North America. He serves as consulting ecologist to develop maps of vegetation coverage for the southwest US with the National Gap Analysis Program with USGS. Mr. Comer holds an M.S. in natural resources (forest ecology) from the University of Michigan.


Climate Change

Climate change is widely recognized as one of the gravest threats to the diversity of life. Actions we take today will determine the ability of plant and animals species to adapt to changing climatic conditions. NatureServe is applying data, decision-support tools, and network expertise to help understand how biodiversity will respond to the climates of the future.

View from a polar ice rim | Photo by Mark Garten

  1. Climate Change Vulnerability Index

    ProductStandards & Methods
  2. Climate Change Vulnerability Index - Canadian Version

    ProductStandards & Methods
  3. Supporting Assessment of Management Alternatives for Greater Sage-Grouse

  4. Building Local Capacity for Climate Change Adaptation Planning

  5. Climate Refugia in the Central Basin of Southern Nevada