Dr. Jonathan Hendricks is Director of Publications at the PRI. Prior to moving to the PRI in 2016, he was an associate professor in the Department of Geology at San Jose State University (part of the California State University system), where he taught multiple courses on paleontology and also mentored graduate students. Besides managing PRI’s publications, he is also active in paleobiological research and outreach activities associated with the National Science Foundation-supported Digital Atlas of Ancient Life project.

Research Focus

Much of Dr. Hendricks’s current research is focused on the evolutionary history of cone snails (family Conidae), which are renowned today for their dazzling shells, deadly venoms, and great species diversity. Hendricks is currently researching the Neogene history of cone snails in tropical America to better understand how environmental changes associated with the Pliocene closure of the Central American Seaway (due to the formation of the Isthmus of Panama) affected the evolution and extinction of different clades of cone snails across this region and through time. This research is conducted using a variety of techniques, including modern “total evidence” phylogenetic approaches that integrate data from the fossil record with molecular and morphological datasets developed from modern species.

Hendricks is also interested in using museum fossil collections to develop new digital resources for education and outreach. He is actively involved with the Digital Atlas of Ancient Life project, which is focused currently on the generation of new digital field guides to fossils and other online resources, including an open access paleontology “textbook” that is currently under development. His work in this area is supported by two grants from the National Science Foundation.

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Honors, Awards, and Appointments

  • Paleontological Society Distinguished Lecturer, 2016-2017
  • Visiting Research Associate Professor, Department of Geological Sciences, Ohio University