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Katya McKerr headshot

Project and Operations Manager, Center for Galapagos Studies, UNC-CH
Project and Operations Manager, Galapagos Science Center, San Cristobal, Ecuador

Katya was born in Peru and has lived in the United States since 2003. She earned a BA in Management and Society with a minor in Hispanic Studies from UNC-Chapel Hill. She is a native Spanish speaker with ten years of experience working in the travel industry where she has trained personnel in five different countries. She loves to learn about new cultures and has visited around twelve countries. She is passionate about protecting the environment and enjoys working with people from around the world.

As the project manager, Katya manages services, programs, logistics, and activities for the Galapagos Science Center and UNC Center for Galapagos Studies, including events on campus. She was responsible for the organization and planning of the World Summit on Island Sustainability at the Galapagos Islands, hosting 150 participants from around the globe. UNC-Chapel Hill’s leadership including the Chancellor, Provost, Vice Provost for Global Affairs, and Interim Vice Chancellor for Research also attended.

Katya is responsible for operations management, which includes working directly with the Galapagos Science Center’s assistant director to improve protocols, develop institutional manuals, produce relevant documentation, and prepare equipment catalogs.

Katya provides essential bilingual travel management support to the team, scientists, and students interested in traveling to the Galapagos to conduct research. In particular, she assists in obtaining their transit certificates, which are required for all affiliates researching in the Galapagos.

Finally, Katya is responsible for financial management, including purchasing equipment, bookkeeping, billing, and managing accounts receivable. She also coordinates international wire transfers with the Universidad de San Francisco de Quito for our international projects.