About Rancho La Brea
Our research group uses fossils preserved in asphaltic sediments to investigate big questions related to climate change, evolution, and paleoecology.
Because Rancho La Brea represents the largest collection of late Pleistocene asphaltic fossils in the world, we use this opportunity to train students, build collections through excavation, prepare and conserve fossils in our public viewing Fossil Lab and curate this massive collection onsite. Our staff also use these collections to study scientific questions with visiting academics. Much of the current research could not be possible without the unique geological circumstances that occur in the La Basin and the efforts of the paleontologists who came before us.
Dr. Balisi is investigating how the dual disturbances of megafaunal extinction and climate transition shaped the mesocarnivore community over the past 40,000 years and by extension, our Los Angeles community today.
Dr. Campbell began his tenure at the Natural History Museum in 1977 as one of two curators to fill staff positions for the newly opened George C. Page Museum, a satellite facility of the Natural History Museum.
As a Preparator at Project 23, Mr. Campbell is responsible for excavating fossils, training volunteers and students and sharing his expertise with the public.
As a Preparator in the lab, Ms. Clarke is responsible for preparing fossils, supervising volunteers and communicating her work with museum guests.
Dr. Ellwood's ecological research occurs at the intersection of climate change, conservation, and citizen science.
As Collections Manager Ms. Farrell has co-managed all of the fossils at Rancho La Brea for over a decade.
Dr. Harris is a Curator Emeritus at Rancho La Brea.
Ms. Howard works on digitization projects in the collections and in the field through photography, photogrammetry, and 3D surface scanning.
Dr. Lindsey's research integrates information from past and modern ecosystems to understand how Ice Age animals and environments functioned.
Ms. Mazzello is interested in proper paleontological cataloging techniques, preservation and conservation of fossil specimens through best museum and curatorial practices, to ensure long-term research accessibility.