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Enrique Ortiz

Enrique, a Program Officer, Senior Biodiversity Fellow for the foundation, was born in Lima, Peru where he had an unusual and fun upbringing. He found his love for natural history early and kept his parents on their toes by bringing home many creatures ranging from tarantulas to eagles, which he trained. He went on to study biology at the 450 year-old San Marcos University in Peru and survived all of the political unrest of the time. He met Pete Myers (Director of the foundation) while studying at the University, and they worked together on wetlands conservation and migratory birds.

During several years of conducting research on various biological topics (like the courtship rituals of hummingbirds) and studying a range of organisms (from whales to ticks), he was witness to the gradual but irreversible environmental degradation occurring in most of the tropical rainforest areas where he was working in Peru and Bolivia. He became more proactive in the efforts to fight the rapid loss of biological diversity. Enrique pursued graduate education in the US at Princeton University, which has prepared him to make the most of his work at the W. Alton Jones Foundation. Carrying out research in rainforest areas, working on issues related to natural resources management, and working with the excellent team at the foundation makes Enrique hopeful that he is, “making a difference for a better world.”

Enrique enjoys kayaking and bird watching in his spare time.

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