Erin Harper was born in southern California and is the first of two children in the Harper family. She is currently a junior at the University of California San Diego where she is majoring in Animal Physiology and Neuroscience. Erin has been a research assistant in behavioral and reproductive studies with the Indian rhino and Giant Pandas at the Center for the Reproduction of Endangered Species at the San Diego Zoo. She is also involved with local wildlife studies with a public-private collaboration involved in population management of the light-footed clapper rail. In 2005 Erin will begin a research project to determine blood values for the light-footed clapper rail to improve population assessment prior to release. Conservation projects which Erin is involved in at Sea World San Diego include: assessment of captive giraffe mortality, and heavy metal tissue concentrations in beached pinninpeds.