In September 2003 I flew to Australia to learn everything I could about frogs. I spent hundreds of hours walking up streams in search of frogs. I learned how to find and identify frogs by their calls and color patterns, body shape and habitat preferences. I learned molecular biology and spent hundreds of hours in the laboratory testing nearly 3,000 frogs for disease. I taught calculus, chemistry, ecology and vertebrate biology at my university and I won a large grant from the National Geographic Society to fund my research. I published original scientific articles in peer-reviewed journals and received awards for presentations I gave at ecological conferences. In June 2007 I returned to the USA with a doctoral degree and a desire to put my knowledge to use for the betterment of the planet.
Educating kids in Florida, March 2012
In March 2008, I realized that the career path scientists tend to follow was not the one that would save the most amphibians from extinction. I pulled out a piece of paper and started writing down ideas on what would need to take place for amphibians to be saved. I designed an educational poster, taught myself web design, built a website, incorporated and trademarked SAVE THE FROGS!, found a board of directors, applied for and received public charity status from the IRS, created a logo and t-shirts (thanks Alyson!), conceived Save The Frogs Day, started giving presentations and interviews, writing politicians, government agencies and environmentally-unfriendly corporations, I sent out press releases and started posting on social media, organized rallies and protests, recruited and trained volunteers, I spent hours packing up merchandise orders in my parents’ basement, I found our first large donor and moved to California to open an office, I hired our first employee, got legislation passed and proclamations issued, federal rules created, state amphibians declared, I created videos and flyers and opened an education center, I sent out millions of emails (thanks for being a subscriber!), organized classes, hikes, trainings and ecotours, got a developer to cancel their plans to build on endangered toad habitat, stopped the city of San Francisco (San Francisco!!!) from destroying endangered frog habitat, educated tens of thousands of people at live events and millions of people online, got frog legs out of restaurants, dissections out of schools, inspired volunteers in over 60 countries to hold educational events, started chapters in Africa and South America, designed, restored and built wetlands, and raised nearly a million dollars for amphibian conservation efforts.
How have I achieved excellence in my environmental pursuits on a scale so far beyond what most people have ever accomplished?
Three simple rules:
(1) I follow what I am passionate about
(2) I learn from the best
(3) I put into action that which I am taught
I'm guessing you can't pack up shop and fly to Australia for four years, and you may not have funds for a SAVE THE FROGS! Ecotour where you would learn all about amphibians in their native habitat. But if you are truly dedicated to achieving excellence in your environmental pursuits than you are in luck because you now have the opportunity to follow your passion, learn from the best and put into action that which you are taught, from the comfort of your own home.
This Sunday May 22nd, 2016, the SAVE THE FROGS! 90-Day Challenge begins. Over the course of 13 weeks, Challenge participants will meet online 14 times with myself, SAVE THE FROGS! staff and other dedicated environmentalists to learn the precise skills that I consider to be the most important for anyone pursuing a career in amphibian conservation, or anyone interested in increasing their personal effectiveness when it comes to creating positive change for wildlife, ecosystems and planetary health.
I invite you to take part in the inaugural SAVE THE FROGS! 90-Day Challenge and I look forward to passing on my knowledge to you so that you can achieve excellence in your environmental pursuits.
"I love frogs and I am strong supporter and believer in Dr. Kerry Kriger's mission to save these amazing and beautiful creatures."
- Alfredo Hernandez Chavez
In May 2014, I began studying the art of wetlands construction and restoration. SAVE THE FROGS! is now building wetlands at schools and on both private and federal land, and Re-Frogging America! We are excited to be building wetlands that attract wildlife and last for centuries.