John Rappole (left - in middle), along with Gene Blacklock, wrote the
standard field reference on Texas birds (Birds of Texas: A Field Guide, Texas
A&M University Press).   He is Research Scientist emeritus for the Smithsonian
Conservation Biology Institute, a Fellow of the American Ornithologists'
Union, the Welder Wildlife Foundation, and the Roger Tory Peterson Institute
where he was Chairman of the Board from 2010-2013.   Rappole has been a
professional ornithologist for over  40 years, receiving his Ph.D. degree from the
University of Minnesota in 1976.  He has conducted field research in four states
(Texas, New York, Georgia, and Virginia), seven countries (Mexico, Ecuador, Costa
Rica, Honduras, Belize, Burma [Myanmar], Guatemala), and the U.S. Virgin Islands,
and received more than 1.7 million in research funds from 32 different funding
agencies or organizations, including the National Science Foundation, the U.S.
Department of Defense, the National Geographic Society, the World Wildlife Fund,
the Nature Conservancy, the German Academic Exchange Program, the National
Park Service, the InterAmerican Development Bank, USAID, the National Park, the
U.S. Forest Service, the U.S. Department of Agriculture, and the U.S. Fish and
Wildlife Service.  Rappole has consulted professionally on various aspects of
environmental policy for the King Ranch, World Bank, National Audubon Society,
U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the U.S. Department of Defense,
National Academy of Sciences,  the National Marine Fisheries Service, USAID,
National Fish and Wildlife Foundation, National Renewable Energy Laboratory,
National Wildlife Federation, New York State Environmental Police, and the
Argentina Animal Damage and Insect Control.  He has published 14 books and
150 professional papers on a variety of biological topics including migratory bird
ecology and evolution (his main area of interest), West Nile virus, avian influenza,
effects of climate change on bird distribution, and the ornithogeography of Burma.
 Among his books are several field guides, including Birds of Texas, Birds of the
Southwest, Birds of the Mid-Atlantic States, and Birds of the Southeastern United
States.  During his career, Rappole has given more than 200 professional talks 
including invited presentations at the American Museum of Natural History, the
Max Planck Institute, the European Science Foundation, the Government of Saudi
Arabia, the Gibraltar Museum, the International Ornithological Congress, the
Government of Myanmar, and the European Ornithological Society.  In March of
2004, Rappole led an expedition into the poorly-known sub-Himalayan region of
northernmost Myanmar (financed by the National Geographic Society and the
Alexander Wetmore Fund of the U.S. National Museum) where he and colleagues
Swen Renner and Nay Myo Shwe discovered a new bird species, the Naung Mung
Scimitar-Babbler.