Animal cognition expert most famous for her study of parrots in particular. She is one of the first leading researchers to seriously study the capacity of animals to learn language in a human-like fashion.
She earned her PhD from Harvard University, where she would later conduct lectures.
She has been involved in wildlife conservation and is the President of the non-profit organization The Alex Foundation.
She was married to a neurobiology professor.
She and composer Martin Boykan have both taught at Brandeis University.