After an extensive search, the W.K. Kellogg Biological Station will welcome a new director next year. Fredric Janzen has been named director at the W.K. Kellogg Biological Station, effective June 1, 2020.
Janzen comes to Michigan State University from Iowa State University, where he most recently served as a professor in the Department of Ecology, Evolution and Organismal Biology. Previously, he chaired ISU’s Interdepartmental Genetics Graduate Program.
A renowned researcher, Janzen has been internationally recognized for his work in the fields of ecology and evolution. Using reptiles, particularly turtles, as a study organism, Janzen’s research examines the environmental and genetic factors that determine the expression of physiological, behavioral and life-history traits.
“I’m very excited to join the KBS community in 2020,” Janzen said. “I greatly look forward to meeting staff, students, faculty and other KBS supporters and to jumping on board to lead KBS to continued excellence in the future.”
Advancing the mission of KBS
KBS is jointly administered by the College of Agriculture and Natural Resources—CANR—and the College of Natural Science—CNS. Janzen’s faculty appointment will be through CANR’s Department of Fisheries and Wildlife.
“Dr. Janzen’s expertise fits extremely well with the mission of KBS,” said Ron Hendrick, dean of CANR. “I look forward to working with him in a leadership role to further advance the reputation of KBS by continuing to offer highly relevant research, education and outreach.”
Phillip Duxbury, dean of CNS, added: “MSU’s Kellogg Biological Station is an internationally recognized center for research, education and outreach in the area of ecology and evolution. Dr. Janzen has the stature and experience to further enhance the outstanding performance of KBS, and I am very pleased to welcome him to Michigan State.”
Janzen earned a doctoral degree in ecology and evolution from the University of Chicago, a master’s degree in zoology from Colorado State University and a bachelor’s degree in biology from North Central College. Janzen’s lab at ISU focuses on the effects of genetic and environmental factors in mediating the expression of physiological, behavioral and life-history traits, primarily in reptiles.
About Kellogg Biological Station
George H. Lauff, the first resident director of KBS, was named to that role in 1964. Janzen will succeed Jeffrey Conner, who has been serving as interim director since Katherine Gross stepped down from the post in 2018 after 14 years.
As Michigan State University’s largest off-campus educational complex, KBS has put its land-grant values into practice for nearly a century, providing the public with examples of science’s crucial role in sustaining natural and managed communities. KBS students and faculty work to understand and solve real-world environmental problems for a better tomorrow.
Cameron Rudolph and Eileen Gianiodis, MSU College of Agriculture and Natural Resources, contributed to this article.