Lekelia Jenkins

Assoc Professor
TEMPE Campus
Assoc Professor
TEMPE Campus
Assoc Professor
TEMPE Campus
Senior Sustainability Scientist
TEMPE Campus


Lekelia “Kiki” Jenkins is a native of Baltimore, Maryland, where she grew up fishing and crabbing recreationally on the Chesapeake Bay. During the summers she prowled the grounds of the Baltimore Zoo as a junior zookeeper, learning about endangered species and conservation. A Meyerhoff Scholar and UNCF/Merck Fellow, she graduated with a B.S. in biology from the University of Maryland Baltimore County. As a National Science Foundation Graduate Fellow, she received her doctorate from Duke University by pioneering a new field of study into the invention and adoption of marine conservation technology. Since then, she has worked as an environmental consultant for the Natural Resource Defense Council, while also actively participating in the burgeoning field: Studies in Expertise and Experience. Forging a new path of opportunity, she gained the support of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration to host its first ever AAAS Science and Technology Policy Fellows. As a fellow, she served in the National Marine Fisheries Service’s Office of International Affairs,  where she helped implement new regulations to address bycatch and illegal, unregulated, and unreported (IUU) fishing by foreign nations. Professor Jenkins came to the University of Washington as a postdoctoral scholar supported by the Ford Foundation Diversity Postdoctoral Fellowship and the David H. Smith Conservation Research Fellowship, which is awarded to rising conservation scientists who have the potential to change the face of conservation through entrepreneurial approaches. She later became an assistant professor at the School of Marine and Environmental Affairs at the University of Washington and during this time was awarded an Alfred P. Sloan Research Fellowship in Ocean Sciences. She is now an assistant professor at Arizona State University in the School for the Future of Innovation in Society.

Professor Jenkins research interests center on the rigorous, empirical study of the process of conservation in order to distill conservation theory and codify best practices, specifically exploring marine conservation, bycatch, conservation technology, tidal energy, invention, technology transfer, and diffusion of innovations. Her research includes field sites along the southeast and west coasts of the United States, along Gulf of Mexico, in Ecuador, and in Costa Rica. Her hobbies include watching and participating in all forms of dance, mentoring, reading, traveling, eating good food while enjoying a nice view, writing poetry, costuming, imagining the possibilities, loving her friends and family, and loving her life. 




  • Ph.D.  Marine Conservation, Duke University, Nicholas School of the Environment and Earth Science, North Carolina 2006. Dissertation: The Invention and Adoption of Conservation Technology to Successfully Reduce Bycatch of Protected Marine Species. Advisors: Drs. Larry Crowder and Michael Orbach 
  • B.S. Biology; Minor, Dance, Cum Laude and Baccalaureate Honors in Biological Sciences, University of Maryland Baltimore County, Maryland 1997


Google Scholar

Research Interests

  • The rigorous, empirical study of the process of conservation, especially marine conservation
  • The theoretical and empirical study of the invention, use, and governance of marine technologies, especially bycatch reduction devices and tidal energy devices
  • The study of best practices for international fisher learning exchanges to promote conservation
  • The practice and study of science art, especially science dance, for science communication and social change
  • The study of gear substitution as a means to reduce bycatch and habitat impacts of fishing gear
  • The study of the integration of lay expertise into scientific decision-making.




3. Thompson, K.R.; Hudson, A.; Jenkins, L.D.; Zenny, N.; Pilcher, N.; Peckham, S.H. (in press) Guidelines for Organizing a Fisheries Learning Exchange. Marine Policy. DOI:10.1016/j.marpol.2016.06.008.

2. Jenkins, L.D.; Thompson, K.R.; Bourillon, L; Peckham, S.H. (in press) The Scope of Fisheries Learning Exchanges for Conservation. Marine Policy. DOI: 10.1016/j.marpol.2016.05.025.

1. Thompson, K.R.; Heyman, W.D.; Peckham, S.H.; Jenkins, L.D.  (in press) Key characteristics of successful fisher learning exchanges. Marine Policy. DOI:10.1016/j.marpol.2016.03.019.



13. *Senko, J.; Jenkins, L.D.; Peckham, S. H. (2017). At loggerheads over international bycatch: Initial effects of a unilaterally imposed bycatch reduction policy. Marine Policy 76: 200-209.


12. Crowther, G.J.; Davis, K.; Jenkins, L.D.; Breckler, J.L. 2015. Integration of math jingles into physiology courses. Journal of Mathematics Education. 8 (2) 56-73.

11. Kowalski, A.A. and L.D. Jenkins. 2015. The role of bridging organizations in environmental management: examining social networks in working groups. Ecology and Society. 20 (2): 16. http://www.ecologyandsociety.org/vol20/iss2/art16/

10. Jenkins, L.D. 2015. From conflict to collaboration: The role of expertise in fisheries management. Ocean & Coastal Management. 103:123-133.

 9. Deighan, L and Jenkins, L.D. 2015. Fishing for recognition: Understanding the use of NGO guidelines in fishery improvement projects. Marine Policy. 51:476–485.


8. Pietri, D.M.; Gurney, G.G.; Benitez-Vina, N.; Kuklok, A.; *Maxwell, S.M.; Vina, M. A.; Whiting, L.; Jenkins, L.D. 2013.  Practical recommendations to help students bridge the research–implementation gap and promote conservation. Conservation Biology. 5:958-67. DOI: 10.1111/cobi.12089.

 7. Jenkins, L.D. and Garrison K. 2013. Fishing Gear Substitution to Reduce Bycatch and Habitat Impacts: An Example of Social-Ecological Research to Inform Policy. Marine Policy. 38: 293-303.


6. Benaka, L.R.; Cimo, L. F.; and Jenkins, L.D. 2012. Bycatch Provisions in the Reauthorized Magnuson-Stevens Act. Marine Fisheries Review. 74(2):1-12. http://spo.nmfs.noaa.gov/mfr742/mfr7421.pdf.  

 5. Jenkins, L.D. 2012. Reducing sea turtle bycatch in trawl nets: A history of NMFS turtle excluder device (TED) research. Marine Fisheries Review. 74(2): 26-44. http://spo.nmfs.noaa.gov/mfr742/mfr7423.pdf.

4. Jenkins, L.D.; *Maxwell, S. M.; Fisher, E. 2012. Increasing Conservation Impact and Policy Relevance of Research through Embedded Experiences. Conservation Biology. 26: 740-742.


3. Jenkins, L.D. 2010. Profile and Influence of the Successful Fisher-Inventor of Marine Conservation Technology. Conservation & Society. 8:44-54. http://goo.gl/LPslCZ.

 2. Jenkins, L.D.  2010. The Evolution of a Trading Zone: A Case Study of the Turtle Excluder Device. Studies in the History and Philosophy of Science Part A. 41:75-85.


1. Jenkins, L.D. 2007. Bycatch: Interactional expertise, dolphins and the U.S. tuna fishery. Studies in the History and Philosophy of Science Part A. 38:698-712.




1. ‡Doherty, B.; Harguth, H.; *McCrea-Strub, A.; Jenkins, L.D.; and Figueira, W. 2016. USA (West Coast). In: Global Atlas of Marine Fisheries: a critical appraisal of catches and ecosystem impacts, eds Daniel Pauly and Dirk Zeller. Washington DC. Island Press.


2. †Gorman, M.E.; Jenkins, L.D.; Plowright, R.K. 2012."Human interactions and sustainability" In: Sustainability: Multi-Disciplinary Perspectives, eds. Heriberto Cabezas and Urmila Diwekar.  Bentham Open E-Books. DOI: 10.2174/97816080510381120101  


1. †Jenkins, L.D. 2010. "The Evolution of a Trading Zone: A Case Study of the Turtle Excluder Device," In: Trading Zones and Interactional Expertise: Creating New Kinds of Collaboration, ed. Michael E. Gorman, Inside Technology Series. Cambridge. MIT Press. Citations: 0.

Research Activity


Fall 2018
Course Number Course Title
FIS 394 Special Topics
Spring 2017
Course Number Course Title
HSD 500 Research Methods
Fall 2016
Course Number Course Title
HSD 598 Special Topics
Spring 2016
Course Number Course Title
HSD 500 Research Methods


2. � HSD 598: Project Design for Conservation and Community Development (3 credits); fall 2016. This course provides training in how to design projects for conservation and development based on empirically derived best practices.

1. � HSD 500: Case Study Research: Design and Methods) (3 credits); spring 2016, spring 2017. This course provides in-depth training in case study theory, design, and methods, concluding in the completion of a pilot case study on the topic of the students choice.



20. Best Presentation Award, Global Young Academy, Annual General Meeting, May 2015

19. Mack Lipkin Man and Nature Series Fellow, October 2014

18. Woodrow Wilson Career Enhancement Fellow, June 2014-May 2015

17. Kavli Fellow, June 2013

16. Alfred P. Sloan Research Fellow, February 2013-February 2015

15. Member, Global Young Academy, 2013-2018

14. Honoree,Women of Power: Eco Women Making a Difference in the Environment, September 2011

13. David H. Smith Conservation Research Fellowship, September 2009-2011 http://goo.gl/YSUP57

12. Ford Foundation Diversity Postdoctoral Fellowship, September 2009-May 2010

11. AAAS Science & Technology Policy Fellowship, September 2007-August 2009

10. International Sea Turtle Symposium Archie Carr Best Student Presentation Award, April 2004

 9. Duke University Marine Laboratory Fellowship, 2003-2004

 8. Duke Endowment Fellowship, 1998-2000

 7. National Science Foundation Graduate Fellowship, 1997-2002

 6. Ford Foundation Graduate Fellowship, 1997 (declined)

 5. Baccalaureate Honors in Biological Sciences, 1997

 4. Cum Laude, 1997

 3. Meyerhoff Scholarship, 1993-1997

 2. Phi Kappa Phi Honor Society, 1995

 1. Golden Key National Honor Society, 1995



3. Nominee, Distinguished Teaching Award for Innovation with Technology, University of Washington, January 2014

2. National Science Foundation K-12 Graduate Teaching Fellowship, 2002

1. Certificate of Appreciation  Carteret Board of Education, April 1999           



4. Nominee, Outstanding Diversity Commitment Award, College of the Environment, University of Washington, May 2015

3. Nominee, California Ocean Protection Council Science Advisory Team, April 2013

2. Finalist, AAAS Early Career Award for Public Engagement with Science, February 2011

1. The Ocean Conservancys LIVBLUE Challenge Award, January 2008



2. First Place, U.S. Zouk Open Competition, Amateur Division, May 2015

1. First Runner-up, Postdoctoral Category, AAAS Science Dance Contest, November 2008 



13. Reviewer: Endangered Species Research; Coastal Management; ICES Journal of Marine Science; Bulletin of Marine Science; National Science Foundation; Maritime Studies; International Journal of Marine Science; Chelonian Conservation And Biology; Kuwait Journal of Science and Engineering.


12. Co-Editor, Special Issue: Fisheries Learning Exchanges, Marine Policy, 2015-present.

11. Session Chair, International Sea Turtle Symposium, Dalaman, Turkey, 2015.

10. Member, Advisory Board, UC Santa Cruz Doris Duke Conservation Scholars Program, University of California Santa Cruz, 2015-present.


9. Member, Planning Committee, Conservation Science for the Future, David H. Smith Conservation Research Fellowship Program, 2014-present.


8. Member, Scientific Review Committee, National Socio-Environmental Synthesis Center, 2013-present.

7. Member, Understanding Global Change Project Advisory Board, University of California Museum of Paleontology and the National Center for Science Education, 2013-present.


6. Session Chair and Member of the Program Committee, International Sea Turtle Symposium, 2012 & 2013.


5. Trainer/Facilitator, Women in Marine Science Annual Retreat, 2011.


4. Organizer, Women and Careers Retreat, Elk, CA, 2009.


3. Workshop Organizer, “Championing Diversity in Science & Engineering”, AAAS Science & Technology Policy Fellowship Program 2008.

2. U.S. Delegate to the Annual Meeting of the Northwest Atlantic Fisheries Organization, Vigo, Spain 2008.


1. Symposium Organizer, “Tinkerers & Tipping Points: Invention & Diffusion of Marine Conservation Technology,” American Association for the Advancement of Science Annual Meeting, San Francisco 2007.




9. Member, Science Communication Training Selection Committee, College of the Environment, University of Washington, 2014.


8. Senator, Faculty Senate, University of Washington, 2013-2015.

7. Member, Steering Committee, Doris Duke Conservation Scholars Program, University of Washington, 2013-present.


6. Member, Program on the Environment Advisory Board, College of the Environment, University of Washington, 2012-2013.

5. Member, Science Communication Task Force, College of the Environment, University of Washington, 2012.


4. Session Moderator, University of Washington Future Faculty Fellows Workshop, 2010.


3. Council Member, Bycatch Reduction Engineering Program, National Marine Fisheries Service, 2008-2009.

2. Council Member, Education Council, National Marine Fisheries Service, 2008-2009.


1. Discussion Leader, “Wanted: Superstar Scientists Society Can Trust and Admire”, AAAS Science & Technology Policy Fellowship Program, 2008.




12. Member, Art/science Visiting Assistant Professor Search Committee, School for the Future of Innovation in Society, Arizona State University, 2016-present.


11. Member, Human and Social Dimensions of Science and Technology (HSD) Review Committee, School for the Future of Innovation in Society, Arizona State University, 2015-present.

10. Member, Human and Social Dimensions of Science and Technology (HSD) Executive Committee, School for the Future of Innovation in Society, Arizona State University, 2015-present.

9. Member, Promotion &Tenure Guidelines Committee, School for the Future of Innovation in Society, Arizona State University, 2015-present.


8. Member, Admissions Committee, School of Marine and Environmental Affairs, University of Washington, 2012-present.


7. Host, Smith Fellowship Retreat, Washington DC, 2010.


6. Intern Coordinator, Office of International Affairs, National Marine Fisheries Service, 2008-2009.


5. Graduate Student Representative, Duke University Marine Laboratory, Duke University, 2002.


4. Rachel Carson Professor in Marine Affairs and Policy Selection Committee Member, Duke University Marine Laboratory, Duke University, 2001-2003.

3. Kidfest Co-Coordinator of Marine Science Exhibit, Duke University, 2001.


2. Tour Guide Coordinator, Duke University Marine Laboratory, Duke University, 1999-2000.


1. Graduate Handbook Founding Editor, Duke University Marine Laboratory, Duke University, 1998-1999.




8. Volunteer Harvester, City Fruit, Seattle, Washington 2014-2015.


7. College Ministry Leader, Calvary Fellowship Church, Seattle, Washington 2013-2015.


6. Bible Study Leader, Calvary Fellowship Church, Seattle, Washington 2011-2013.


5. Steering Committee & Founding Member, Green Guild Biodiesel Coop, Washington DC, 2008-2009.


4. Science Mentor, 2001-present.

3. Dance Mentor, 2001-2007; 2013-present.


2. Science Fair Coach, Gramercy Christian School, Newport, North Carolina, 2000-2002.


1. Scientist in the Classroom, Smyrna Elementary School, Smyrna, North Carolina, 1998-1999. Received a Certificate of Appreciation from Carteret Board of Education for this work.