Kate Jirik, M.S.
Kate Jirik serves San Diego Zoo Wildlife Alliance as Library Research Specialist. In this role, she is responsible for researching, writing, and curating content for the San Diego Zoo Wildlife Alliance Library’s Animal Fact Sheets. This unique collection of more than 140 fact sheets—each peer reviewed and based on scientific literature—is used by zoo and aquarium professionals, volunteers, scientists, students, writers, filmmakers, media, and other wildlife enthusiasts in the US and internationally. Kate manages the research and editorial processes, frequently corresponding with leading experts in conservation science and wildlife care.
Kate is currently creating fact sheets to support San Diego Zoo Wildlife Alliance’s conservation initiatives and immersive guest experiences, including Wildlife Explorers Basecamp and Elephant Valley. Another of Kate’s priorities is fulfilling tailored research requests for San Diego Zoo Wildlife Alliance team members. She continues to help advance the Library’s engagement efforts by creating newsletter content, enhancing web technologies, sustaining responsive service and cultivating partnerships.
Kate earned her master’s degree in Biology from California State University, Long Beach, where she was awarded the Outstanding Graduate Research Fellow Award for her investigations of the spatial and reproductive ecology of stingrays. Kate’s penchant for fieldwork provided her with opportunities to study endangered species, such as the smalltooth sawfish, and endangered ecosystems, including coral reefs, coastal salt marshes and mangroves. Before joining San Diego Zoo Wildlife Alliance, Kate worked as a public educator and naturalist with the Birch Aquarium at Scripps Institution of Oceanography. She is a member of the San Diego Science Writers Association.