John Kress


Kress is Distinguished Scientist and Curator of Botany at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of Natural History. He formerly served as the Interim Under Secretary for Science at the Smithsonian and Director of Science in the Grand Challenges Consortia. He received his education at Harvard University and Duke University where he studied tropical biology, ethnobotany, evolution, and ecology. He is a taxonomic specialist on the tropical Zingiberales and his current research is focused on biodiversity genomics, conservation, and the Anthropocene.