Latin American Engagement Committee

This committee is responsible for promoting engagement of Latin Americans at NAOC2020.


Cecilia Kopuchian | Co-chair

Argentinean National Research Council (CONICET) (Argentina)

Cecilia is a researcher with the Argentinean National Research Council (CONICET), working at the Center of Applied Ecology (CECOAL) in Corrientes (North-East Argentina). Her research interests include understanding the processes that shape population and species divergence in Neotropical birds, both to answer basic questions in evolutionary biology and to design effective conservation and management strategies. Her current research focuses on the role of the Paraná-Paraguay Rivers system as a geographic barrier for birds, and in conservation genetics of endangered species of grassland Neotropical birds. She received a PhD in Biology from the University of Buenos Aires in 2008.

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Alex Jahn | Co-chair

Research Fellow, Indiana University (U.S.A.)

Alex’s research integrates behavioral, physiological, and evolutionary ecology to study individual- and population-level processes occurring throughout the annual cycle of migratory birds. His research addresses such questions as how migratory strategies (e.g. timing and speed of migration) are molded by other life history strategies (e.g. investment in reproduction). Very little is known about where and why birds migrate at tropical and south-temperate latitudes, yet research on such species offers novel insights into basic questions about how and why birds migrate in different environmental contexts. His current research focuses on the movement ecology of Turdus thrushes at temperate and tropical latitudes. He received his PhD from the University of Florida in 2009.

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Adrián S. Di Giacomo

Research fellow, National Scientific Research Council (CONICET) (Argentina)

Head of the Conservation Biology Lab, Center of Applied Ecology (CECOAL) (Argentina)

Adrián obtained his PhD in Biology from the University of Buenos Aires, Argentina. His research interest includes the biology and conservation of threatened birds of the grassland biome, and other topics on Neotropical ornithology. His current research focuses on the responses of the reproduction and productivity of threatened grassland birds to habitat management (e.g. livestock and protected areas) and climate change.


Carla Suertegaray Fontana

Curator of Birds and Mammals, Pontifical Catholic University of Rio Grande do Sul (PUCRS) (Brazil)

Carla is a Brazilian Biologist with PhD in Zoology (2004) at Pontifical Catholic University of Rio Grande do Sul (PUCRS). She is supervisor of students in the graduate program of Ecology and Evolution at PUCRS. She is the president, and founder member, of the Brazilian Ornithological Society. She is also a member of Association of Field Ornithologists (AFO), Wilson Ornithological Society (WOS) and American Ornithological Society (AOS). Carla has been studying birds and informing people for more than 30 years in southern Brazil and is especially interested in life history, ecology and conservation of Atlantic forest and southern South American grassland birds, and the effects of anthropization on bird communities and populations. She also has an interest and experience in natural history collections.