Formal headshot of Jill Heaton.

Jill S. Heaton

Professor and Senior Vice Provost


My research focuses on how best to manage natural resources on public lands. The ‘resource’ is almost always, though not exclusively, reptiles. The ‘lands’ are always deserts. My interests are in the biogeographic distribution of species and ecosystems; distribution of habitat given diverse (and diversifying) land use; habitat degradation; and more recently, climate change. I work with desert tortoises in the Mojave Desert, USA and girdled lizards in Namibia.


  • B.S., Biology, University of North Texas, 1993
  • M.S., Biology, University of North Texas, 1996
  • Ph.D., Geography, Oregon State University, 2001