Director of Sustainability, California Academy of Sciences
As Director of Sustainability at the California Academy of Sciences, Dr. Elizabeth Bagley oversees cross-functional sustainability programs that are critical to the institution’s mission to explore, explain, and sustain life on Earth. She seeks to create relevant, researched, and relatable sustainability content and initiatives that inspire the Academy’s audiences to take action to help people and the planet thrive together.
Bagley leads the Academy’s partnerships with corporate, government, and non-profit organizations and provides them with sustainability information and solutions to positively impact the Bay Area and beyond. She also works closely with Academy presenters, educators, and communicators to develop solutions-based engagement and outreach programs and materials, reaching 1.5 million visitors every year through programs and exhibits on the museum’s public floor and millions more online through sustainability content.
She is Vice Chair of the Green Scientific Advisory Group for the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA) and was an inaugural Fellow for the Sustainability in Science Museums Fellowship at Arizona State University. Bagley frequently speaks about sustainability solutions at industry conferences, workshops, and corporate events.
Before joining the Academy in 2015, Bagley designed the science content for video games at LeapFrog. Bagley has experience studying coral reefs, sea turtles, and butterflies in Kenya, and has worked as a naturalist in Glacier National Park. An experienced environmental educator, she has taught middle and high school science in Louisiana, K-12 science pedagogy to teachers, and science communication to graduate students at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. She holds joint PhDs in Environment & Resources and Educational Psychology from the University of Wisconsin at Madison, where she studied how video games can encourage systems thinking about complex environmental topics. She earned joint Master of Science degrees in Conservation Biology and Sustainable Development and Educational Psychology and Bachelor of Science degrees in Zoology and Biological Aspects of Conservation.
Bagley grew up on a sustainable sheep, goat, and cattle farm in Western Wisconsin. Inspired by her two young boys, Bagley’s work is centered around a strong commitment to ensure that future generations continue to have opportunities to explore the incredible diversity of life on Earth. She lives with her family and can often be found hiking in the Bay Area hills, playing brass instruments, or cooking for her growing sons.