For a little over four years, Helen was part of the Gemmell lab and called Dunedin home. She was often not home, however, dedicating large amounts of her time doing fieldwork in a remote location somewhere in New Zealand, or talking to field experts in areas as diverse as conservation genetics to science communication. Her passion and care for her work was evident in how she mentored her students and talked to anyone about her research.
By having Helen around we learned about and grew accustomed - perhaps not completely - to terms such as cloacal massage, sperm collection bra insert, and hihi sperm race.
Helen's enthusiasm for her work made her not only a well published researcher, but also a recognised science communicator, bridging the gap between academia and the general public. Her entry in the 180 Seconds of Science video competition saw her win a Public's Choice Award and a Future Leader Award in one go. She was also recently awarded the Callaghan medal for Science Communication.
Helen has left us was for an amazing job opportunity. She is now Conservation Programme Manager at the Royal Zoological Society of Scotland, a position that is based at the Edinburgh Zoo. We are sad to see her go, but know this is a fantastic career move that will suit Helen like a glove, and also brings her closer to home and her family.
We will miss you, and wish you all the best in your next adventure, Dr. Helen Taylor!