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Laurel Neme, PhD, has camped in the Kalahari, aided injured vultures, and searched for animals from Alaska to the Amazon--all in pursuit of knowledge and a better story. She is the author of "Orangutan Houdini," a picture book based on the true story of an incredible ape, and of "Animal Investigators:" How the world’s first wildlife forensics lab is solving crimes and saving endangered species, a "CSI for wildlife" with a foreword by Richard Leakey and endorsed by Jane Goodall.

As an environmental journalist and an international consultant specializing in wildlife and natural resource management, she has worked in dozens of countries around the world for a variety of organizations, including the US Agency for International Development and World Wildlife Fund, and has first-hand insights on the animals she writes about. Closer to home, she volunteers with her son at Outreach for Earth Stewardship where she helps rehabilitate injured birds of prey.

Neme is a regular contributor to National Geographic and has been featured on ABC News Nightline, NPR’s Science Friday and Time. She’s also developed, hosted and produced "The WildLife," a radio show that explores the mysteries of the animal world through interviews with scientists and other wildlife investigators.

In 2012 she served on the jury for the Indianapolis Prize (the Nobel Prize for wildlife conservation) and, in 2013, was awarded the University of Michigan’s Humanitarian Service Award. She often speaks to professional groups, including Interpol’s Wildlife Crime Working Group and the Society of Wildlife Forensics Scientists, schools and other public venues, such as zoos and museums.

She is a Fellow at the University of Vermont’s Institute for Environmental Diplomacy and Security, holds a Master’s degree in public policy from the University of Michigan and a PhD in public and international affairs from Princeton University. She lives with her husband and son in northern Vermont. Learn more at

She will be reading from her book at the Brattleboro Literary Festival on Sunday, Oct. 5 from 10 to 11 a.m. at the Brattleboro Museum and Art Center, downtown Brattleboro.