M. Sanjayan, Ph.D.

CEO, Conservation International

M. Sanjayan, a global conservation scientist whose work spans from genetics to wildlife migration to how nature enhances human life, serves as Conservation International’s chief executive officer. 

Sanjayan joined CI in 2014, and oversaw both its successful $1.1 billion capital campaign as well as its critically acclaimed brand campaign, “Nature Is Speaking,” along with its push into creative virtual reality filmmaking.

Sanjayan holds a masters from the University of Oregon and a doctorate from the University of California, Santa Cruz, and his peer-reviewed scientific work has been published in journals including ScienceNature and Conservation Biology. He is a visiting researcher at UCLA and a distinguished professor of practice at Arizona State University. He is a Catto Fellow at the Aspen Institute.

Raised in Southeast Asia and West Africa, Sanjayan’s unique background has attracted widespread media coverage, including from the New York Times, Outside Magazine and CNN International. His appearances include NBC’s “Today Show”, “The Late Show with David Letterman,” “CBS This Morning,” and “CBS Evening News,” and he has hosted over a dozen documentaries for PBS, BBC, National Geographic, Discovery and Showtime. Most recently, he hosted the University of California and Vox Media’s Climate Lab series, which collectively has garnered over 20 million views.

Sanjayan lives in Washington, D.C. with his wife and daughter. When able, he spends time in Montana fly-fishing, or birding and diving around the world.

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