McDonald held master’s and doctorate degrees in zoology and was passionate about all aspects of organismal biology, but especially birds, conservation biology, natural history and evolutionary medicine. She was an avid birder and bird-bander at campus’ Biocore Prairie, always willing to train any interested student or member of the public. She was also an eager participant in many university seminars and discussion groups, especially the Evolution Seminar Series and Zoology/Evolution Reading Group, and often stepped forward to suggest speakers or themes. She was always an advocate for evolutionary biology and happy to help in any way, including being a key organizer of many successful Darwin Day outreach symposia for the J.F. Crow Institute for the Study of Evolution.
A memorial service for McDonald is being held on Thursday, July 14 at 4:30 p.m. at the First Unitarian Society of Madison, located at 900 University Bay Drive.
For more about McDonald’s life, read her obituary on the Gunderson Funeral and Cremation Care website.