María Jazmín Rios journey into the realm of environmental conservation began in the rugged terrains of Nevada and California in 2008, exploring the ecological nuances of the western fence lizard. This venture kindled a lasting interest in wildlife ecology and conservation which she carried through diverse terrains and research domains, from urban wildlife and genetic studies to assessing water quality in lakes and exploring the genetic markers of invasive plants in the Midwest. Her roots in wildlife biology and conservation genetics, have evolved her career towards embracing the complex challenges of coastal resilience.
Prior to joining The Bay Foundation, Jazmin honed her expertise as a Project Manager at the Palos Verdes/South Bay Audubon Society and delved into urban wildlife ecology with the Urban Wildlife Institute. Her roles have seen her managing impactful projects, mentoring interns, and engaging with local communities to promote environmental stewardship.
Now as the Coastal Adaptation Program Coordinator, Jazmin is channeling her diverse expertise towards enhancing the coastal ecological conditions of the LA Bay. With a particular focus on dune restoration and wetlands preservation, she aims to foster a resilient coastal ecosystem that can withstand the impacts of climate change while promoting biodiversity. Her advocacy for environmental justice and education continues to drive her efforts in community engagement, ensuring an inclusive approach to environmental solutions and equitable access to open spaces.
Jazmín earned her B.S. in Biology and Chemistry from Northeastern Illinois University. She is currently an advisor for Stem Advocacy Institute (SAi) and a Board Member of the Palos Verdes/South Bay Audubon Society. If Jazmín is not at the beach, you can find her hiking or biking around the city, volunteering at community events or trying a new restaurant.