Eduardo Santana-Castellón was born in Cuba, raised in Puerto Rico, and though a United States Citizen he has been a permanent resident of Mexico since 1985and where he is a professor at the University of Guadalajara, Jalisco. Eduardo obtained his BSc (’79) and MSc (’85) degrees in Wildlife Ecology, and PhD (’00) joint degree in Zoology/Wildlife Ecology all from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. For over two decades, he has been adjunct associate professor, visiting professor, honorary scholar and member of the advisory committee of the Nelson Institute, the Department of Forest and Wildlife Ecology and the Global Health Institute at UW-Madison. He presently participates in various University of Guadalajara projects as General Director of the Museum of Environmental Sciences, Coordinator of the Socio-environmental Film Festival, Coordinator of the City & Nature Literature Award, President of the Advisory Board of the University Botanical Garden, and member of the governing boards of the La Primavera natural protected area.
Eduardo has played a leading role in creating some 20 new academic and conservation programs or institutions and has worked in defending the rights of Nahuatl and Wixárika indigenous communities in Western Mexico. He designed the Cuba Country Conservation program for the World Wildlife Fund (WWF), and facilitated the first WWF workshop to develop the operational/management plan for the Manu Biosphere Reserve in Peru.
As President of the Manantlán Biodiversity Foundation, Eduardo serves on the governing board of the Ayuquila Watershed Integrated Management Agency and has been a member of the governing boards of the Society for Conservation Biology, Association for Tropical Biology and Conservation and the Cornell Laboratory of Ornithology.
Eduardo has been “immersed” in Aldo Leopold´s thinking since he was 18 years old when he arrived from Puerto Rico to study in the Department of Wildlife Ecology, at the University of Wisconsin-Madison and was advised by and studied with Leopold’s students Joe Hickey and Robert McCabe.
In Mexico Eduardo has been one of the main promoters of Leopold´s legacy. During more than three decades, he has been presenting Leopold´s ideas in his publications and to his undergraduate and graduate students in wildlife ecology, natural resource management and urban sustainability courses at the University of Guadalajara (Jalisco). His 1993 cooperation project between UW-Madison and UdeG produced in 1996 the first Spanish translation of Sand County Almanac (Editorial Gernika). More recently, he has organized international events at the Guadalajara International Film Festival that analyze Leopold´s impacts in the Mexico, and has incorporated Leopold´s concepts in the design of the novel Museum of Environmental Sciences in Guadalajara.
The Aldo Leopold Foundation was founded in 1982 with a mission to foster the land ethic through the legacy of Aldo Leopold, awakening an ecological conscience in people throughout the world.