Madhavi Colton

Vice President and Executive Director, Audubon California

Dr. Madhavi Colton joined Audubon as Vice President & Executive Director, Audubon California in 2023. In this role, she leads California’s efforts to protect critical habitats for California’s birds and people.  

Throughout her career, Madhavi has worked at the intersection of science, conservation, management, and policy.  At the Coral Reef Alliance, she worked with communities in Indonesia, Fiji, Hawai‘i, Honduras, and Mexico to reduce overfishing, improve water quality, reforest streams, and protect biodiversity. She also launched a research program into evolutionary responses to climate change and translated the results into conservation action. Prior to joining the Coral Reef Alliance, Madhavi helped California develop socio-ecological monitoring plans for its marine protected area network. She has conducted research in the California current system, south-eastern Australia, and California’s deserts. Most recently, Madhavi served as Executive Director of the Coral Reef Alliance, leading the organization through the choppy waters of the pandemic to its strongest financial position. Madhavi has a Ph.D. in marine ecology from the University of Melbourne, Australia.