Marine Scientist Shannon Atkinson loves working with animals and understanding how and why nature works the way it does. She is a professor at the School of Fisheries and Ocean Sciences for the University of Alaska, Fairbanks and conducts research on a variety of species from corals to seals and whales. As the Principal Investigator of over $46 million in research programs in Alaskan and Russian waters, Atkinson studies physiology to understand why species fail to adapt to environmental change and how contaminants and stress affect marine mammals as well as marine mammal reproduction and nutrition. Trained at the University of Hawaii, she earned a B.Sc in Animal Science and an M.S. in Marine Science, later earning a Ph.D. in Veterinary Studies from Murdoch University. Her research has resulted in over 100 peer-reviewed scientific publications and book chapters, and she has trained numerous Master’s and Ph.D. students.