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Berry Biodiversity Conservation Center

Berry Center
Built: 2011

Currently Houses:UW Biodiversity Institute

History

The Berry Biodiversity Conservation Center (Berry Center), made possible by a generous gift from Robert and Carol Berry, is a 40,000 square foot building housing multiple facilities, students, faculty members and programs all centered around the study of biodiversity. The Berry Center is a space to examine and explain biological diversity and the importance of diversity for the maintenance of ecological structure and processes.

The facility includes display areas, a 114-seat lecture hall, a 36-seat teaching laboratory, public meeting areas, seminar rooms, a "dirty" laboratory for the processing of field biological collections, offices for visiting researchers and office space for 22 graduate students.

When fully occupied, the Berry Center will be home to about 50 faculty, staff, research scientists and graduate students.

"The physical ambiance of the center sets a high standard for academic excellence, consolidating a wide spectrum of biological disciplines under a single roof, creating an environment conducive for student to student and student to faculty interactions that will advance good science," says Bob Berry.

Bob and Carol Berry are originally from Pennsylvania, where Bob was CEO of The United States Liability Insurance Group of Insurance Companies. In 1978, they moved their family to a small ranch outside of Sheridan, where their two school-aged children attended Sheridan High School.  Bob commuted to Pennsylvania to oversee his business for the next 19 years before the company's sale.

Since childhood, Bob has been fascinated with the natural world, and at age 10 he captured a fledgling Kestrel which set the course for his life's work in conservation. He was a witness to the extinction of the eastern Appalachian Peregrine Falcon in the mid 1950s and helped found the Peregrine Fund, Inc. in 1970, a conservation organization that played a major role in the species' restoration throughout the United States.  He is currently the Director of the Peregrine Fund's Orange-breasted Falcon Program with a mission to monitor and save this regionally endangered species from extinction in Central America. Bob is a former trustee of the Wyoming chapter of the Nature Conservancy and serves on the board of the Cornell Laboratory of Ornithology.


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