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Dr. Jessica Healy-LaPrice


Jessica is Associate Professor of Biology at Austin College, a private liberal arts college north of Dallas near the Oklahoma border.  She received her BA from Central College in Pella, Iowa in 2005, and her PhD in Zoology from Colorado State University in Fort Collins, CO in 2010. After a brief post-doc in reproductive endocrinology at University of Arizona College of Medicine Phoenix, she moved to Texas to begin work at Austin College in 2012. At Austin College, she teaches a variety of courses, including Mammalogy, Comparative Vertebrate Anatomy, Physiological Ecology, Extreme Physiology, and others, as well as mentoring undergraduate students in research. Research topics include regulation of energy balance in hibernating ground squirrels, and the effects of small mammals on prairie restoration.

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Dr. Dara Orbach

President Elect

Dara is an Assistant Professor of Marine Biology at Texas A&M University- Corpus Christi. Dara obtained a B.A. and a B.Sc. from the University of British Columbia (2006), a M.S. from the University of Western Ontario (2010; bat sensory modality integration), and a Ph.D. from Texas A&M University at Galveston (2016; mating in female cetaceans). Dara’s research focuses on the functional anatomy and behavioral ecology of marine mammals. In particular, much of her recent research focuses on genital evolution, mating patterns, and population biology of dolphins, whales, and porpoises. Dara teaches courses at TAMU-CC on Functional Anatomy, Biology of Marine Mammals, Science Communication, and Field Techniques in Marine Mammalogy. 


Dr. Joel Brant

Permanent Secretary

Joel is a professor of biology at McMurry University in Abilene, Texas. Joel earned his PhD from Texas Tech University and is broadly interested in the natural history of mammals in Texas. Current research projects tend to focus on the population ecology of small mammals around Abilene and the community ecology of rodents and bats in the Southern Rolling Plains of Texas.


Dr. Tom Lee

Secretary Treasurer

Tom moved to Abilene, Texas, in 1994 and is currently Professor and Chair of the Biology department at Abilene Christian University. Tom obtained a B.S. from Texas A&M University in 1984, M.S. from Angelo State University in 1987 under the direction of Mark D. Engstrom, and a Ph.D. from Texas A&M University in 1992 under the direction of John W. Bickham. His research interests are in mammalian biogeography and systematics of Ecuador. He has conducted eleven field trips to Ecuador, most of these trips have been in the high Andes. His other research interests include heteromyid rodents and pronghorn of the Chihuahuan Desert. He has served the Texas Society of Mammalogists in several ways: he was chair of the Honorary Membership Committee (1999-2004), Permanent Secretary (1999-2005), and President (2005-2006).

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Dr. Michelle Haynie


Michelle is a professor at the University of Central Oklahoma. She obtained her B.S. and M.S. in zoology from Oklahoma State University, and her Ph.D. in biology from Texas Tech University. She teaches Biology for Majors - Principles, Evolution, Population Genetics, and Integrative Biology. Her research interests lie in mammalian population genetics and molecular systematics. Current projects include an assessment of bobcat genetic diversity in Oklahoma and a mark-recapture survey of small mammals in the gypsum hills of western Oklahoma. 

Executive Committee

Past Presidents and Current Elected Officers

  • Loren Ammerman, Angelo State University

  • Amy Baird, University of Houston--Downtown

  • John Bickham, Texas A&M University

  • Robert D. Bradley, Texas Tech University

  • Joel Brant, McMurry University

  • Guy N. Cameron, University of Cincinnati (Ohio)

  • Scott Chirhart, Centenary College of Louisiana

  • Arthur G. Cleveland, California Baptist University

  • Robert C. Dowler, Angelo State University

  • Cathy N. Early, University of Mary Hardin-Baylor

  • Herschel W. Garner, Tarleton State University

  • Ira F. Greenbaum, Texas A&M University

  • Meredith Hamilton, Oklahoma State University

  • John Hanson, Columbus State University

  • Michelle L. Haynie, University of Central Oklahoma

  • Jessica Healy-LaPrice, Austin College

  • Rodney Honeycutt, Pepperdine University

  • Jessica Light, Texas A&M University

  • Dana Lee, Cameron University 

  • Tom Lee, Abilene Christian University

  • Robert E. Martin, McMurry University

  • Dara Orbach, Texas A&M University - Corpus Christi

  • Russell Pfau, Tarleton State University

  • Carleton Phillips, Texas Tech University

  • David Ribble, Trinity University

  • David J. Schmidly, University of New Mexico

  • Phil Sudman, Tarleton State University

  • Steven Smith, Humboldt State University

  • Richard Stevens, Texas Tech University

  • Michael Tewes, Texas A&M University - Kingsville

  • Monte Thies, Sam Houston State University

  • Ron Van Den Bussche, Oklahoma State University

  • Kenneth T. Wilkins, Baylor University

  • Ray Willis, Midwestern State University

  • Earl G. Zimmerman, University of North Texas

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