Karen Glennemeier, Ph.D.

Research Biologist

Karen Glennemeier brings decades of habitat restoration experience and amphibian research to her role facilitating Shedd’s amphibians-focused Great Lakes Action Days (GLAD). In partnership with the Forest Preserve District of Cook County, Glennemeier collaborates with the GLAD coordinator to lead Shedd’s work with site stewards, ecologists and GLAD volunteers to improve local amphibians’ habitats, primarily through invasive plant removal and water-quality monitoring.

Before joining Shedd Aquarium, Glennemeier served as science director at Audubon, Chicago Region for 13 years, where she implemented citizen science programs and adaptive management for prairies and woodlands. Prior to her work with Audubon, Glennemeier was a community organizer and volunteer leader with the Sierra Club, The Nature Conservancy and other groups working on conservation issues in southeastern Michigan.

She holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from Grinnell College and an M.A. in endocrinology from the University of California, Berkeley. She earned her Ph.D. in biology from the University of Michigan in 2000. During her graduate studies, Glennemeier explored the impact of persistent pollutants in the environment on frogs’ physiology and ecology.


Dr. Karen

My favorite animals at Shedd are the little garden eels in Wild Reef that continually pop up and down, in and out of the sand. Though I'm sure they’re up to something quite serious, I chuckle every time I see them.