Spotlight: Larry Boles

Larry is one of our Lead Keepers in the department and he’s been working here about 2.5 years. Besides doing all the things that Keepers do, he is responsible for our new computerized record keeping system. He’s got it up and running and has worked closely with Keeper Katy getting the animal health records computerized.

We stole Larry away from the world of academia. Prior to working with us, he taught an animal behavior course at UNC-Chapel Hill. He also has taught at Southwestern University, Concordia University, and Old Dominion University while living in Texas and Virginia. He taught courses in Animal Behavior, Evolution and Evolutionary Biology, Ecology, Marine Biology, and Environmental Science. We’re really fortunate at the Museum that he was looking for a career change!
A few months ago, Larry started working part time in the Animal Department and part time with the Innovation and Learning Department on a project called “Genome Diner” which is funded by the National Institutes of Health (NIH). The goal of the project is to bring scientists together with members of the public to discuss the societal implications of genetic research. The project brings together 7th grade students and their caregivers with researchers from Duke University. Participants consider issues like: How can genes make you more likely to have a disease? What laws and policies affect how your genetic information is handled and accessed? Would you participate in a large scale genetic study of disease issues?

Larry is even keeled, smart, willing to do anything, and is the person everyone goes to with questions. We joke that Larry knows a little bit about everything, and it’s probably true. I am reminded, yet again, that I work with many incredible people, and without exaggeration, I look up to Larry as a role model for me and all the Keepers.

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