Verrill Medal Symposium 2016

Verrill Medal Symposium

Saturday, November 5, 2016 from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm

David Friend Hall, Yale Peabody Museum

170 Whitney Avenue

Free, but registration required


The Verrill Medal is the highest honor bestowed by the Curators of the Yale Peabody Museum. The award was created in 1959 by then director S. Dillon Ripley to honor "signal practitioners in the arts of natural history and natural sciences," and there have been just 18 recipients since the award’s inception. The award is named for Addison Emery Verrill, Yale’s first professor of zoology and one of the Peabody’s first curators.


In a ceremony on November 4th, honoring a tradition established in 1966 at the Peabody’s 100th anniversary, the Museum will present the Verrill Medal to four researchers who are pillars in their field.


Join us on Saturday, November 5th for the Verrill Medal Symposium – a full day of talks about the role of the Peabody Museum, and natural history collections in general, as enduring engines of discovery and important sources of knowledge generation and dissemination. The symposium will feature the four 2016 Verrill Medalists listed below, three of whom are Yale alumni, and ten promising early and mid-career scientists who are also Yale alumni or current students. The talks will highlight the groundbreaking scientific discoveries being made by museum-based scientists. CLICK HERE for full presentation schedule and titles. Light breakfast and lunch will be provided.


Featured Verrill Medalists:

May Berenbaum ('75), Swanlund Chair and Head, Department of Entomology, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign


Naomi Pierce ('76), Hessel Professor of Biology; Curator of Lepidoptera, Museum of Comparative Zoology, Harvard University


Neil Shubin, Robert R. Bensley Distinguished Service Professor, Department of Organismal Biology and Anatomy; University of Chicago


Geerat Vermeij (PhD '71), Distinguished Professor, Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences, University of California at Davis



Yale Alumni and Current Student Speakers:

Gwen Antell ('16), current research intern at Florissant Fossil Beds National Monument, Colorado


Alex Dornburg (PhD '14), Research Curator, Ichthyology, North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences


Sarah Federman (expected PhD ’17), current Yale graduate student in Ecology & Evolutionary Biology


Daniel Field (PhD '16), Prize Fellow (junior tenure-track faculty), University of Bath, UK (Jan. 2017)


Eva Hoffman ('16), current graduate student at the University of Texas at Austin in Geosciences


Tyler Lyson (PhD '12), Curator, Vertebrate Paleontology, Denver Museum of Nature and Science


Dakota McCoy ('13), current graduate student at Harvard University in Organismic & Evolutionary Biology


Aspen Reese ('12), current graduate student at Duke University in Ecology


Mary Caswell Stoddard ('08), Assistant Professor, Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, Princeton University


Michelle Young (expected PhD ’18), current Yale graduate student in Anthropology



Full presentation schedule and titles




General Schedule

8:30 to 9:00Light breakfast welcome
9:00 to 10:40Introduction and Morning Session 1 (4 talks)
10:40 to 10:55Coffee break
10:55 to 12:15Morning Session 2 (3 talks)
12:15 to 1:45Lunch, in Class of 1954 Environmental Sciences Building
1:45 to 3:20Afternoon Session 1 (4 talks)
3:20 to 3:35Coffee break
3:35 to 5:00Afternoon Session 2 (3 talks) and Conclusion


Full presentation schedule and titles