The Executive Committee oversees the activities of the Tyler Prize, including the selection of Tyler Prize Laureates.  Members of this international Committee are selected for their experience in the fields of relevance to the Tyler Prize and are assisted by the Tyler Prize Administrator, based at the University of Southern California.

Julia Marton-Lefèvre was the Director General of the International Union of Conservation of Nature from 2006 to 2015. She is a member of a number of boards focused on environment, development, education, and good governance. She chairs the Executive Committee of the Tyler Prize for Environmental Achievement, the Donor Council of the Critical Ecosystem Partnership Fund, the Strategic Advisory Council to the Institute for Sustainable Development and International Relations (IDDRI), and the Board of Trustees of the Alliance of Bioversity Internationa and CIAT. Other board memberships include the Bureau of the Intergovernmental Panel on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES), the Environmental Leadership Training Initiative of Yale University, the committee of Critical Friends to Veolia, Oxford University’s James Martin School, the Global Institute of Sustainability (Arizona State University), the Prince Albert II of Monaco Foundation, and the Institute of Oceanography of Monaco. Ms. Marton-Lefèvre is a Chevalier de la Légion d’Honneur  and Officier de l’Ordre de Mérite of France;  Officier r dans l’Ordre de Saint-Charles, Monaco, and received the Lifetime Achievement Award in 2019 from the National Council of Science and the Environment.  She was the Edward P. Bass Distinguished Visiting Environmental Scholar at Yale University in 2016 and is a member of the World Academy of Art and Science and the World Future Council.

Joe ArvaiJoe Árvai is the Director of the Wrigley Institute for Environment and Sustainability, and the Dana and David Dornsife Professor of Psychology, Environmental Studies, and Biological Sciences at the University of Southern California. His early training was in oceanography, but he quickly became interested in why people say they care deeply about something, like the environment, but then don’t act to protect it. So, starting with a PhD steeped in psychology, economics, and environmental science, he began to conduct research on how people formulate their attitudes and beliefs, how they make judgments and decisions, and how they ultimately behave against the backdrop of a wide range of risks and opportunities. Joe has published nearly 100 scientific papers about these topics, and he appears frequently as a commentator across a broad range of media. He also serves as a science advisor to the Office of the Administrator of the U.S. EPA through the agency’s Chartered Science Advisory Board, as well as a member of the of National Academies of Sciences Board on Atmospheric Science and Climate. Joe also serves as an advisor to a broad range of businesses and NGOs. Follow him on Instagram at @JoeArvai, and on YouTube at

Rosina M. Bierbaum received an early introduction to pollution issues, growing up in smoggy Bethlehem, PA. Reading Rachel Carson’s The Sea Around Us at age 11 hooked her on a career to preserve the environment. Dr. Bierbaum is a Professor and Dean Emerita at the University of Michigan with a primary appointment in the School for Environment and Sustainability, and courtesy appointments in the School of Public Health and the College of Engineering. She is also the Roy F. Weston Chair of Natural Economics in the School of Public Policy at the University of Maryland. Her experience extends from climate science to foreign relations and international development. She chairs the Scientific and Advisory Panel of the Global Environment Facility, served on President Obama’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology, was an Adaptation Fellow at the World Bank, and was a lead author of the U.S. National Climate Assessment. Rosina served for two decades in both the legislative and executive branches of the U.S. Government, including serving as the Acting Director of the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP). She has lectured on every continent.  Bierbaum is a member of the National Academy of Sciences, a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, the American Association for the Advancement of Science, the Ecological Society of America, and Sigma Xi. She earned a BA (English), a BS (biology), and a Ph.D. in Evolutionary Ecology.

Christopher Boone is a Professor in the School of Sustainability at Arizona State University. Previously, he served as Dean of the School of Sustainability and Founding Dean of the College of Global Futures at ASU. Born and raised in Kingston, Ontario, Canada, he graduated from Queen’s University with a BA (honours) in Geography. He received a master’s and Ph.D. degree in Geography from the University of Toronto, focusing his research on Brazilian urbanization, and completed a postdoctoral fellowship in the School of the Environment at McGill University. His research contributes to ongoing debates in sustainable urbanization, environmental justice, urban ecology, global environmental change, and higher education innovation. He served on the scientific steering committee of the Urbanization and Global Environmental Change Programme (an IHDP and Future Earth project) and as a co-pi and senior scientist for two Long Term Ecological Research programs, the Baltimore Ecosystem Study and the Central Arizona Phoenix LTER. He presently serves as an executive committee and board member for the Global Council for Science and the Environment, dedicated to advancing the scientific basis for environmental decision-making. He is a co-founder and co-chair of the National Sustainability Society. At ASU, he has taught classes on sustainable urbanization, urban and environmental health, principles and methods of sustainability, environmental justice, sustainable design and innovation, designing the future university, and interdisciplinary methods for socio-ecological research. He has held visiting professor positions in the Department of Biology at Georgetown University and at the Yale School of the Environment.

Julia Carabias is a Biologist and Professor of Faculty of Science, the National Autonomous University of Mexico since 1977. Teaching and researching for 45 years on ecology, with emphasis on conservation, management, and restoration of tropical ecosystems, and environmental policies. She was president of the National Institute of Ecology in 1994 and the Ministry of Environment, Natural Resources and Fisheries (1994- 2000). She has been a member of several national and international commissions and boards and has been recognized with several Awards: International Paul Getty (2000), International Cosmos Prize (2004), Champion´s Earth from UNEP (2005), Belisario Domínguez Medal from Mexican State (2017). Doctorate honoris causa of National Autonomous University of México, Autonomous University of Nuevo León, and Autonomous University of Tlaxcala. She has been a member of El Colegio Nacional since 2018.

Margaret Catley-Carlson operates at the Board level for improved water resource management, agricultural productivity, and rural development. Catley-Carlson has 50+years in diplomacy, global and national organization leadership, as Chair and Direct in research groups focussed on water management, agriculture advancement, and international development. President of CIDA, Deputy Minister National Health and Welfare, Founding Chair of World Economic Forum Global Water Management.  Vice-Chair Canadian Water Network Board, member UN Secretary General’s Advisory Board on Water, Rosenberg Forum, Patron/ past Chair Global Water Partnership. Council of Advisors of the World Food Prize, Library of Alexandria in Egypt, Tyler Prize and Stockholm Water Prize, Boards of the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI), International Commission on Integrated Mountain Development (ICIMOD), Syngenta Foundation, and the IFDC (Fertilizer Management). Past positions include President Canadian International Development Agency 1983-89; Deputy Executive Director UNICEF New York 1981-1983; President Population Council New York 1993-98; Deputy Minister Health and Welfare Canada 1989-92. Ms. Catley-Carlson has ten honorary degrees and is an Officer of the Order of Canada.

Nicole Dubilier is a Director at the Max Planck Institute for Marine Microbiology in Bremen, Germany where she heads the Symbiosis Department and is a Professor for Microbial Symbiosis at the University of Bremen. Her research has fueled a major change in our understanding of the importance, diversity, and function of symbioses between bacteria and animals. Together with her team, she has revealed the remarkable diversity of marine symbioses, and shown that beneficial associations between bacteria and marine invertebrates have evolved independently and multiple times in convergent evolution. Her research has provided a critical contribution to marine microbiology and ecology by showing how widespread symbioses between marine invertebrates and bacteria are in terms of geography, animal and bacterial diversity, and habitats ranging from coastal sediments to the deep-sea. She has led numerous research cruises and expeditions worldwide, and uses a wide array of methods to study marine symbioses that range from deep-sea in situ tools to molecular, ‘omic’, and imaging analyses.

Rashid  Sumaila is a University Killam Professor and Canada Research Chair (Tier 1) in Interdisciplinary Ocean and Fisheries Economics at the Institute for the Oceans and Fisheries, and the School of Public Policy and Global Affairs, University of British Columbia. He is also an ‘Extraordinary Professor’ at the University of Pretoria. Dr. Sumaila has published hundreds of articles in top peer-reviewed journals as well as 15+ authored and edited books. Clarivate has named Dr. Sumaila a “highly cited researcher” every year since 2021. He has been recognized with top awards, including the 2023 Tyler Prize in Environmental Achievement; the 2017 Volvo Environment Prize, and named a “100 Most Influential African” in 2023. In terms of policy impacts, Sumaila contributed extensive data and analysis into getting the June 2022 WTO Agreement signed. He is also known as one of the key scientists who have contributed to the current push to improve high seas management. He engages seriously with policymakers and the public, earning him talking spots at the Whitehouse, Canadian and European parliaments as well as the African Union and the United Nations; and securing him audiences with King Charles and the Prince of Monaco. He is also a featured speaker at a wide range of conferences and a favored source for journalists and other writers researching ocean sustainability. Sumaila’s interest in the environment started early in life when his grandfather used to say people should “walk as if the ground feels pain” – he believes this is sophisticated environmentalism. He loves waking up each day thinking of how best to contribute to ensuring that we bequeath a healthy ocean to our children and grandchildren so they too can have the option to do the same. He received his Ph.D. in Economics from the University of Bergen and his B.Sc. in Quantity Surveying  from the Ahmadu Bello University.

Stephanie Hampton

Stephanie Hampton, President of the Ecological Society of America and Deputy Director of Carnegie Science Division of Biosphere Sciences and Engineering. Hampton is a freshwater ecologist with expertise in environmental informatics and analysis of large environmental data sets. Her research includes analyzing the effects of climate change and other human impacts on lakes worldwide. Prior to joining Carnegie earlier this year she was the director of the Division of Environmental Biology at the National Science Foundation. Hampton was also a professor and the former director of an interdisciplinary environmental research center at Washington State University between 2014 and 2022.

Photo credit: Sarah Rose Smiley

Jonathan Patz, MD, MPH, is Vilas Distinguish Professor and John P. Holton Chair of Health and the Environment, and for a decade was the inaugural director of the Global Health Institute at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. He was elected to the National Academy of Medicine in 2019 for his early pioneering work on the health effects of climate change. Dr. Patz co-chaired the health report for the first Congressionally mandated US National Assessment on Climate Change and for 15 years, served as a lead author for the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) – the organization that shared the 2007 Nobel Peace Prize. Some other awards include the Aldo Leopold Leadership Award (2005), Millennium Assessment’s Zayed International Prize (2006), Fulbright Scholar award (2014) American Public Health Association’s Homer Calver Award for Environmental Health Leadership (2015), and Chanchlani Global Health Research Award (2020). His faculty appointments are in the Nelson Institute for Environmental Studies and the Department of Population Health Sciences. Professor Patz has taught and conducted research on the health effects of climate change and global environmental change for more than 20 years and has published over 200 scientific publications and several textbooks on the subject.

Jim Watson is Professor of Energy Policy and Director of the Institute for Sustainable Resources, University College London (UCL). He is also Research Director of the Climate Compatible Growth Programme, funded by the UK government’s Foreign Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO). He was previously Research Director and Director of the UK Energy Research Centre from 2013 to 2019. Jim has over 25 years of research experience in climate change, energy, and innovation policy. He frequently advises UK government departments and other organizations and has been a Specialist Adviser with three UK Parliamentary committees. He also has extensive international experience, including over ten years working on energy scenarios and energy innovation policies in China and India and a period as a Visiting Scholar at the Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University. He is a judge for the Queens Awards (on sustainable development), and chair of the Technical Advisory Group for the World Bank Energy Sector Management Assistance Programme (ESMAP).

In Memoriam

Jan AmendIt is with sadness that the Tyler Prize Executive Committee announces the passing of one of its own.  Jan Amend, was a Professor of Earth Sciences and Biological Sciences and Divisional Dean for the Life Sciences at the Dornsife College of Letters, Arts and Sciences at the University of Southern California.

Dr. Amend played a crucial role in providing essential academic leadership to the life sciences faculty within the Division of Natural Sciences and Mathematics. His dedicated efforts were centered on supporting departments, centers, and institutes, contributing to the recruitment and retention of exceptional faculty members, fostering innovative research initiatives, and guiding faculty through administrative challenges. Amend joined the USC Dornsife community in 2011, and his impact on the academic and research landscape was profound. Serving as the director of the National Science Foundation Science and Technology Center for Dark Energy Biosphere Investigations at USC, he led groundbreaking research and fieldwork. His primary focus involved the detection and characterization of microbial life in the ocean’s subsurface, with a particular emphasis on extreme environments.

Beyond his notable contributions to marine microbiology, Professor Amend delved into the realm of astrobiology, exploring its relevance to NASA missions concerning habitability and life detection on Mars. His scholarly impact is evidenced by an impressive portfolio boasting over 125 peer-reviewed publications. His research not only expanded our understanding of life in extreme environments on Earth but also contributed to the broader scientific discourse surrounding the potential for life beyond our planet.

Jan Amend’s legacy extends far beyond his academic achievements. He leaves an indelible mark on the USC community and the scientific community at large. As the USC family mourns the loss of a dedicated educator and researcher, Jan Amend is remembered for his passion, commitment, and invaluable contributions to the field of life sciences. His impact will continue to resonate through the work of those he inspired and mentored.

The Tyler Prize Executive Committee and Administration wish to extend their deepest and heartfelt condolences to his family, friends, colleagues, students, and all of those whose lives he touched.

Tyler Prize Executive Committee Advisory Council

Advisory Council members are a group of individuals who effectively supplement the Tyler Prize Executive Committee’s skills and abilities to help guide the organization toward its stated mission. The Council serves as an auxiliary of the Executive Committee for advice on policy, program directions, new members, and special programs.

The Tyler Prize Executive Committee retains the ultimate governing authority on all aspects of operations, financial matters, and the selection of Tyler Prize laureates. The Advisory Council is comprised of former members of the Tyler Prize Executive Committee and provides the benefit of their knowledge base and expertise.

Alan Covich Professor Emeritus of Ecology, Odum School of Ecology at the University of Georgia, USA.



Judith E. McDowell Scientist Emerita at the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution