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Mireya Mayor

Primatologist

As a two-time Emmy Award-nominated field correspondent for the National Geographic Channel, Mireya Mayor has reported to audiences worldwide on pertinent wildlife and habitat issues. Closest to her heart is her ongoing study of a newfound species of Microcebus, or mouse lemur, which she discovered on a 2000 field expedition in Madagascar. Her work with this rare primate inspired the prime minister of Madagascar to establish a national park to help protect the new species, conserving the 10 percent that remains of the African island nation’s once vast forest. Mayor recently earned her Ph.D. while conducting research on the effects of forest fragmentation and isolation on two types of lemurs found only in northern Madagascar.

 

Mayor is featured in Mystery Gorilla and Wild Nights on the Nat GeoWILD network. In addition, she starred in the eight-part series Expedition Africa: Stanley & Livingstone (History Channel) as one of four explorers to retrace the nearly 1,000-mile trip of Henry Stanley and David Livingstone. Armed with only a compass and old maps, the explorers face challenging terrain, conflicting team dynamics, and diverse wildlife. In 2011 she published Pink Boots and a Machete: My Journey From NFLCheerleader to National Geographic Explorer.

 

When not deep in the jungle or on assignment, Mayor, a National Geographic Emerging Explorer, speaks to audiences about the importance of conservation for a vigorous and healthy planet. She is an especially powerful presenter for student audiences.

Highlights & Accomplishments
This one-time Miami Dolphins Cheerleader would go on to earn a Fulbright Scholarship, discovery a previously unknown species of mouse lemur, and earn her PhD, proving there is more than one path to success.
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