KCP Directors

Richard Wrangham (PhD, Cambridge University, 1975) is Ruth B. Moore Professor of Biological Anthropology at Harvard University and founded the Kibale Chimpanzee Project in 1987. He has conducted extensive research on primate ecology, nutrition, and social behavior. He is best known for his work on the evolution of human warfare and human aggression, described in the books Demonic Males and more recently in The Goodness Paradox. He has also written extensively on the role of cooking in human evolution, described in the book Catching Fire: How Cooking Made Us Human. Together with Elizabeth Ross, he co-founded the Kasiisi Project in 1997, and serves as a patron of the Great Apes Survival Partnership (GRASP).

Martin N. Muller (PhD, University of Southern California, 2002) is an Associate Professor of Anthropology at the University of New Mexico. He has worked with KCP since 1996, serving as Co-Director since 2004. His research focuses on the relationship between ecology, physiology, and behavior in chimpanzees and humans. He has published extensively on the causes and consequences of aggressive behavior in chimpanzees, and co-directs the Comparative Human and Primate Physiology Center at UNM.

Melissa Emery Thompson (PhD, Harvard University, 2005) is an Associate Professor of Anthropology at the University of New Mexico and has worked with KCP since 2000. Her research focuses on hormone-behavior interactions and life history variation in chimpanzees and other apes. She co-directs the Comparative Human and Primate Physiology Center at UNM where she coordinates KCP’s physiology and health research programs.

Zarin Machanda (PhD, Harvard University, 2009) is an Assistant Professor of Anthropology and Biology at Tufts University and has worked with KCP since 2005. Her research focuses on the evolution of male-female social relationships in primates, examining the function of such relationships and how they are formed and maintained. Machanda coordinates the long-term KCP database and archive and serves on the board of directors for the Kasiisi Project.

Senior Collaborators

Katie Slocombe (PhD, University of St. Andrews, 2005) is a Professor at the University of York. Her research focuses on vocal communication in chimpanzees and how this can inform the understanding of the evolution of human language. She oversees research on communication and social cognition at KCP.

Alex Rosati

Alexandra Rosati (PhD, Duke University, 2012) is an Assistant Professor of Psychology and Anthropology at the University of Michigan. She collaborates with the KCP team on studies of chimpanzee behavior, health, and aging. Her research focuses on the evolution and development of cognition and behavior across primate species.

SherrySherry Nelson (PhD, Harvard University, 2002) is an Associate Professor of Anthropology at the University of New Mexico. She uses stable isotopes to quantify aspects of chimpanzee ecology for comparison to the fossil record. She is also the curator of the KCP skeletal collection, comprising known chimpanzee individuals as well as remains found opportunistically from 20 Kibale species.

Tony in forestTony Goldberg (PhD, Harvard University 1996, DVM University of Illinois 2000) is a disease ecologist, veterinarian, and primatologist and directs the Kibale EcoHealth Project. He has worked with KCP for many years, studying the origins and consequences of infectious diseases in the chimpanzees of Kibale, as well as helping KCP craft best practices to help keep chimps healthy and safe.

Conservation Team

Jess2Jessica Hartel (PhD, University of Southern California) is a Lecturer in the Department of Biology at the University of North Georgia and the Director of the Kibale Snare Removal Program. She coordinates the conservation activities of the snare removal team along with fundraising activities, needs assessment, and data collection.

Elizabeth2Elizabeth Ross (PhD, Edinburgh University) founded the Kasiisi Project in 1997 to provide educational resources to schools surrounding the Kibale National Park in Uganda. She is currently the Executive Director of the Kasiisi Project and has greatly expanded the programs of the Kasiisi Project to include scholarships, literacy programs, teacher training, nutrition programs, health education, conservation education, and sustainable energy programs.

Post-docs and Research Associates


Kris Sabbi (PhD, University of New Mexico, 2020) is an NSF-funded postdoctoral researcher working on our project to establish chimpanzees as a referential model for better understanding the evolution of human leadership. Her specific interests probe the development of chimpanzee sociality, including individual differences in social style and hormonal influences on aggressive development.

cloud-8Cloud Wilke (PhD, University of York, UK), spent several months at Kanyawara, collecting data for her PhD dissertation, between 2013-2015, and is currently working as a postdoctoral researcher on a comparative project on joint attention with Prof Katie Slocombe’s lab.

Nic_faceNicole Thompson González (PhD, Columbia University and New York Consortium in Evolutionary Primatology, 2018). Nic is using long term behavioral and physiological data to examine the influence of social integration on physical aging. You can follow her on twitter @NicoleAlineSci.


Graduate Students

Drew Enigk (University of New Mexico). After having visited Kibale several times between 2013 and 2016, Drew recently defended his dissertation on adolescent male chimpanzees and how they adapt to the adult social world. He is especially interested in the process of intersexual dominance and the factors that influence partner selection in coalitions and social relationships.

StephanieStephanie Fox (University of New Mexico) is a senior PhD student studying the constraints and benefits shaping social relationships between adult females. She also has a masters degree from the University of Calgary where she studied black and white colobus monkeys. You can follow her on instagram @stephanielookingup and twitter @sfox12.

megan_coleMegan Cole (University of New Mexico). Megan integrates behavioral and hormonal data to investigate the paths to social influence in wild chimpanzees. Her research is supported by a National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship and the University of New Mexico. You can follow her on twitter @megan_f_cole.

John W Lower Photo IDJohn Lower (University of New Mexico) was the KCP photographer from 2017-18, and is currently a first-year graduate student, broadly interested in the interactions between chimpanzee physiology and behavior related to dominance, aggression, and cooperation.

JRutherford_profileJillian Rutherford (University of New Mexico) is a second-year masters student whose research focus lies at the intersection of chimpanzee movement ecology and geospatial big data. She hopes to use advances in geographic technology to answer questions about how chimpanzees relate to their spatial environments.


Isabelle MonroeIsabelle Monroe (University of New Mexico) is an undergraduate student studying juvenile chimpanzee play behavior in hopes to better understand how chimpanzees can learn to navigate a highly social environment from a young age. She is also interested in conservation biology and ecology.

CharlieCharlie MacKenzie (Tufts University) is a sophomore from New York City. She works with the tool use and play data of the Kanyawara chimps.

Field Team

Emily Otali (PhD, Makerere University) is the Field Director of the Kibale Chimpanzee Project, directing the daily activities of the field team and long-term data collection. In this capacity, Emily also oversees the snare removal program and serves as Field Director of the Kasiisi Project. Emily has spent more than 15 years at Kanyawara, beginning with her dissertation research on chimpanzee mother-infant behavior.

Margaret KobusingyeMargaret Kobusingye is the Assistant Field Manager of KCP and a second year masters student at Makerere University. Her research focuses on the spatial distribution of snares in Kanyawara. She hopes to answer questions about the effects of habitat characteristics, including wildlife density, on snare placement.

NelsonNelson Bukamba (DVM, Makerere University) is a wildlife veterinarian who leads our Chimpanzee Health, Intervention, and Monitoring Program (C.H.I.M.P.). Dr. Bukamba also works with local people living near Kibale through community livestock programs, domestic animal field clinics, and educational outreach. He is currently pursuing a master’s in Veterinary Science in Conservation Medicine through the University of Edinburgh.

Kibale Chimpanzee Project Field Team: Bashil Musabe, Seezi Atwijuze, Steven Alio, James Kyomuhendo, Fred Baguma, Wilberforce Tweheyo.

Kibale Snare Removal Project Field Team:
Opio, Innocent, Evaristo, Augustine, Simon, Paul, Herbert, Patrick, and Solomon.

Recent Graduates and Project Alumni

IMG_1701bMoreen Uwimbabazi (PhD, Makerere University, 2019). Moreen studied the nutritional ecology of female chimpanzees at Kanyawara and was a Leakey Foundation Baldwin Fellow.


Erik Scully (PhD, Harvard University, 2018). Erik studied the dynamics of disease transmission within and between chimpanzee groups.

Jessica Hartel (PhD, University of Southern California, 2015). Social dynamics of intragroup aggression and conflict resolution in wild chimpanzees.

Pawel Fedurek (PhD, University of York, 2013). Male chimpanzee vocal interactions and social bonds. Currently a postdoctoral scholar at the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology studying vocal behavior in wild chimpanzees at Budongo, Uganda.

Julie Rushmore (PhD, University of Georgia, 2013). Social and ecological drivers of pathogen transmission dynamics in East African great apes. Currently a DVM candidate at the College of Veterinary Medicine at the University of Georgia.

Alexander Georgiev (PhD, Harvard University, 2012). Energetic costs of reproductive effort in male chimpanzees. Currently a lecturer in biology at Bangor University, Wales.

Sonya Kahlenberg (PhD, Harvard University, 2006). Female-female competition and male sexual coercion in Kanyawara chimpanzees.

Paco Bertolani (PhD, University of Cambridge).

nickbNick Brazeau (Harvard University Fulbright Scholar). Nick has developed our photogrammetry program, using parallel laser photography to non-invasively assess body growth in wild chimpanzees. Currently a medical student at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill.

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