Dr. James Leary is an assistant professor at the UF/IFAS Center of Aquatic and Invasive Plants. He was born and raised in Michigan, earning a bachelor’s degree in horticulture and chemistry from Michigan State University. He relocated to Hawaii where he earned his master’s and doctoral degrees in horticulture and molecular ecology, respectively, at the University of Hawaii at Manoa. He served on the beautiful island of Maui as an associate professor in invasive plant species management for the University of Hawaii.
With over 20 years of experience in tropical weed management, he has now started a new chapter in aquatic plant management; continuing his mission is to contribute to the enhancement of aquatic plant management in Florida by extending technologies, promoting environmental and economic sustainability, and fostering broader social knowledge and acceptance of natural resource protection.