Judith Connor earned her Ph.D. from University of California at Berkeley with dissertation research conducted at the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute in Panamá. She has explored the ocean from research ships and sailboats and underwater using SCUBA, submersibles and living in a habitat. She has participated in expeditions to Hawai’i, Monterey Bay, the Caribbean, Mediterranean, and Aegean Seas, New Zealand, Fiji, Africa, and the Canary Islands, and dove under ice 20 feet thick in Antarctica. She has taught marine botany at UC Berkeley, Stanford University and the Monterey Bay Aquarium. Her students’ marine botany web pages are no longer active on the MBARI web.
At the Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute (MBARI), Connor directs the institute’s external affairs. Working with talented staff in the Information and Technology Dissemination (ITD) division, she oversees MBARI websites, annual reports and other publications, public information, media relations, special events, and educational programs. The ITD team also supports MBARI internal research projects with library services and video laboratory support, and MBARI sample, data and historical archives. Connor serves as a member of MBARI’s senior management team and the primary contact for intellectual property issues and technology transfer.
Connor and MBARI collaborate with the Monterey Bay Aquarium on educational projects including lectures, exhibits, such as Mysteries of the Deep and Jellies, Living Art, as well as videos and books. A natural history writer in her spare time, Connor has contributed Kelp Forests, Seashore Life on Rocky Coasts, The Deep Sea and Jellies, Living Art to the aquarium’s book series.
A resident of the Elkhorn Slough watershed, Connor serves as vice president of the board of directors of the Elkhorn Slough Foundation and as chair of the land committee. She has a special interest in native plants and control of invasive species.