Statement On The Life And Legacy Of Panthera Executive Director And Preeminent Wild Cat Conservationist, Dr. Howard Quigley

Dr. Howard Quigley, Ph.D.
© Panthera

Media Contact: Susie Weller Sheppard,, 347-446-9904

New York, NY – The Board and staff of Panthera, the global wild cat conservation organization, mourn the tragic loss of our Executive Director and Jaguar Program Director, and one of the world’s foremost experts on jaguars, pumas and other wild cat species, Dr. Howard Quigley, 70, who passed away on Sunday.

Panthera Chief Executive Officer, Dr. Frederic Launay, stated: “All of us at Panthera are deeply saddened by the all too soon loss of Dr. Howard Quigley — our dear friend and one of the world’s most distinguished wild cat biologists, whose signature good nature and humor provided levity to the often solemn subject of saving wild cats.

“At a time when wildlife conservation, and even more so wild cat conservation, was just a nascent concept, Howard served as one of the original founders of our unique field of study. A true pioneer who ultimately inspired an international community of scientists to follow in his footsteps, Howard dedicated a remarkable lifetime to studying some of our planet’s most incredible species while spreading the message of the ever-interconnected survival of wild cats, other wildlife, ecosystems and our own human species. We are forever indebted to him for his extraordinary contribution to bettering our planet.”

Panthera Board Chair, Jon Ayers, stated: “From Belize to Brazil and beyond, Howard served as a mentor to scores of national wildlife biologists, taking so many under his wing over his nearly five-decade career, and thus creating generations of wild cat advocates working to further embed wild cat conservation into their cultures.”

Panthera Co-Founder and Global Alliance for Wild Cats Chair, Dr. Thomas Kaplan, stated: “One of the most endearing and generous personalities that any of us will likely ever know, Howard was a beautiful person inside and out. As a friend, his fraternal camaraderie was legendary. As a conservationist, Howard embodied a rare lifelong dedication to carving out a permanent place for wild cats on our planet. Fortified for decades by his brotherhood with Panthera Co-Founder, the late Dr. Alan Rabinowitz, Howard continued their shared legacy with a relentless passion to the very end.”

Kaplan continued: “As an enduring tribute to the mark that Howard made on this Earth, we, within the Panthera family and broader wildlife conservation community, take a measure of solace in knowing that the numerous devoted and talented wildlife biologists whose hearts and minds Howard guided and inspired shall forever carry on his consequential legacy of coexistence, corridors and conservation.”

Lending a focus to the Americas, Dr. Quigley’s career concentrated on conservation of the largest wild cats within the Western Hemisphere, including the jaguar and the puma. Demonstrative of his pioneering nature, Dr. Quigley joined Dr. George Schaller and Brazilian partner, the late Dr. Peter Crawshaw, in the 1970’s to conduct the world’s first comprehensive, ecological study on jaguars in the Brazilian Pantanal. Implementation of Panthera’s Jaguar Corridor Initiative, an unprecedented effort to connect and protect jaguars from Mexico to Argentina, constituted one of Dr. Quigley’s lifelong pursuits.

In Northwest Wyoming, Dr. Quigley’s cooperative research and conservation of pumas additionally spanned across sixteen years, serving as one of the few long-term puma projects in North America. His work further extended to Siberian tigers in the Russian Far East, giant pandas in China, and black bears in the United States.

Read more about the career of Dr. Howard Quigley.

About Panthera

Panthera, founded in 2006, is devoted exclusively to preserving wild cats and their critical role in the world’s ecosystems. Panthera’s team of leading biologists, law enforcement experts and wild cat advocates develop innovative strategies based on the best available science to protect cheetahs, jaguars, leopards, lions, pumas, snow leopards, tigers and the 33 small cat species and their vast landscapes. In 39 countries around the world, Panthera works with a wide variety of stakeholders to reduce or eliminate the most pressing threats to wild cats—securing their future, and ours. Visit