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Peter H. Raven, a leading botanist and advocate of conservation and biodiversity, is president emeritus of the Missouri Botanical Garden and George Engelmann Professor of Botany Emeritus at Washington University in St. Louis.  In addition, Dr. Raven is a Trustee of the National Geographic Society and Chairman of the Society's Committee for Research and Exploration. For more than 39 years, Dr. Raven headed the Missouri Botanical Garden, an institution he nurtured to become a world-class center for botanical research, conservation, education, and horticulture display.  During this period, the Garden became a leader in botanical research and conservation in Latin America, Africa, Asia, and North America.   He was awarded the U.S. National Medal of Science, highest science award in the country, in 2001.  Described by TIME magazine as a "Hero for the Planet," he has received numerous prizes and awards from throughout the world.  He served for 12 years as Home Secretary of the National Academy of Sciences, to which he was elected in 1977. He is also a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and of the American Philosophical Society, of the academies of science in Argentina, Australia, Austria, Brazil, Chile, China, Denmark, Georgia, Hungary, India, Italy, Mexico, New Zealand, Russia, Sweden, Taiwan, Ukraine, the U.K. (the Royal Society), and of the Pontifical Academy of Sciences and the Academy of Sciences for the Developing World (TWAS).  He is coauthor of Biology of Plants, the best-selling textbook in botany. 

Bhutan Seems to Offer Hope for the Future of Us All

Dr. Peter Raven, Trustee of the National Geographic Society and Chairman of the National Geographic Committee for Research and Exploration, reflects on a poem he read at an event to celebrate a hundred years of National Geographic coverage of Bhutan.

Golden Gate BioBlitz: Lots of Nature to Explore

Distinguished botanist Peter Raven wishes he could participate personally in this Golden Gate BioBlitz, “because I grew up in San Francisco and became fascinated with nature – first mainly insects, then plants – in the City and around the Bay Area, from the 1940s onward. 


There is no area more fascinating in its biology, with many differences in relatively small geographical areas.”