The E. O. Wilson Biodiversity Foundation assembled a creative team of educators and multimedia specialists to create E.O. Wilson’s Life on Earth. The editorial team was headed by project director and co-author Morgan Ryan. Digital production and animation was carried out by Digizyme, Inc., a Boston-based scientific visualization firm led by Digizyme CEO and Life on Earth co-author Gaël McGill. Additional animations were produced by a 3D animation team led by Drew Berry at the Walter and Eliza Hall Institute in Melbourne, Australia.
Edward O. Wilson, PhD
E.O. Wilson, University Research Professor Emeritus at Harvard, is a distinguished biologist, teacher, and writer. A member of the National Academy of Sciences and the Royal Society, his many literary awards include two Pulitzer Prizes, and he has received over 60 awards for his scientific work, including the National Medal of Science and the Crafoord Prize.
Before heading up the Life on Earth project, Mr. Ryan was managing editor of American Scientist magazine. As a textbook development editor for twenty years, he has served as executive editor for divisions of Prentice Hall and HarperCollins. As a digital producer, writer, and 3D animator, he has developed course-length online materials for college biology (Prentice-Hall), high school chemistry (Holt MacDougall), and molecular biology (McGraw-Hill’s AccessScience.com).
Gaël McGill, PhD
Digital Media Director
Dr. McGill is Director of Molecular Visualization at the Center for Molecular and Cellular Dynamics at Harvard Medical School, where he also teaches scientific visualization. He is the founder and CEO of Digizyme, Inc., a firm dedicated to the visualization and communication of science through advanced technology applications. He is also the creator of the online portal molecularmovies.org and the Molecular Maya (mMaya) software toolkit, as well as a technical editor for Wiley/SYBEX Publishing. He received his B.A. summa cum laude in Biology, Music, and Art History from Swarthmore College and received his PhD from Harvard Medical School in the Division of Medical Sciences (Biochemistry & Molecular Pharmacology).
Mr. Berry is a biomedical animator specializing in science topics at the microscopic scale. In 2010, he was awarded a prestigious MacArthur Foundation fellowship for his collected work and his wide influence in the field of scientific visualization. He has a masters degree in cell biology and works at the Walter and Eliza Hall Institute of Medical Research (WEHI), Australia. He has spent the last dozen years developing novel, state-of-the-art animation techniques that illuminate the frontiers of cellular and molecular biology. His work has been featured in many national news and current affairs programs, documentaries, museum exhibitions, and education multimedia.
Jay Vavra, PhD
Dr. Vavra directs the biology education program at High Tech High. He studied biology at Stanford University and earned his PhD in marine biology from the University of Southern California. His students have published three books on various aspects of urban ecology in San Diego, resulting in nearly 200 published authors graduating from his class. His teaching awards include the Genzyme-Invitrogen Biotech Educator of the Year Award, the National Education Association Christa McAuliffe Award, and an AmgenAward for Science Teaching Excellence. He and his eleventh graders have received two Busch Gardens–Fuji Film Environmental Excellence Awards, and their film about the African bushmeat crisis was selected Best in Show at the National Council on Science and the Environment convention.
Sue Warne has been a manager and editor of numerous textbook and technology products. As Director of Development at Houghton Mifflin, she worked to develop new processes for publishing digital materials. She is the designer of many innovative production and editorial protocols required for the development of Life on Earth.