Stevie Carnation


PhD Candidate
Interdepartmental Doctoral Program in Anthropological Sciences
Stony Brook University

Research Interests
The living colobines represent only a fraction of the diversity expressed throughout the lineage over time. Fossil species in this group exhibit geographical ranges, dietary preferences, and locomotor adaptations unparalleled in extant forms. Though molecular studies have established reliable phylogenies for living taxa, morphological studies which replicate these relationships are rare, and this type of data cannot inform relationships among fossil taxa.

My dissertation research focuses on providing a framework within which researchers can examine the evolutionary history of the colobine monkeys and the cercopithecoid family as a whole. Through refined morphological analysis, broad taxonomic sampling, and advanced phylogenetic methods, I aim to reconstruct a genus-level phylogeny for the Colobinae and provide formal phylogenetic placements for the existing fossil species.

I am also interested in the mechanisms of thumb reduction in colobines and atelines.


2011 - present: 
Ph.D. candidate, Anthropological Science
Interdepartmental Doctoral Program in Anthropological Sciences (IDPAS)
Stony Brook University
Advisors: Drs. James Rossie and Erik Seiffert

M.A., Anthropological Science
Stony Brook University

B.S., Biological Sciences (Magna Cum Laude)
Minor, Biological Anthropology
The George Washington University
Advisor: Dr. Brian Richmond

Grants and Fellowships
2012: The Leakey Foundation – General Research Grant ($12,369): “Phylogenetic reconstruction of the Colobinae: A total evidence approach.”

2012: Professional Development Award ($1,000): Graduate Student Employees Union, Stony Brook University

2010: IDPAS Research Award, Stony Brook University ($500): “Phylogenetic reconstruction of the Colobinae: A total evidence approach.”

2009: Dean’s Fellowship for Professional Activities ($200): The Graduate School, Stony Brook University

2008 - 2013: Graduate Fellowship ($15,000/yr): Turkana Basin Institute 

2006: Intern Fellowship ($500): IGERT, The George Washington University

2005: Science Education Program Fellowship ($5,000): Howard Hughes Medical Institute


Adjunct Instructor 
Our Primate Heritage, Appalachian State University
Human Evolutionary Anatomy, Appalachian State University

Laboratory Instructor
Human Anatomy, Stony Brook University
Introduction to Biological Anthropology, Stony Brook University

Invited Lecturer
Primate Conservation, Appalachian State University

Teaching Assistant
Introduction to Biology for Science Majors, The George Washington University 


News and Reviews 

Fernández D, Carnation S, Gosselin-Ildari A, Salmi R, Viterbo KM (2012) 81st annual meeting of the American Association of Physical Anthropologists. Evo Anth. 21(5): 173-175.

Carnation S (2010) The Miocene comes alive in West Turkana. Evo Anth. 19(6): 203-   204.

Carnation S (2010) Our ancestors’ ancestors: the Miocene roots of the hominin tree. Turkana Basin Institute. <>

Professional Abstracts

Carnation SL and Gosselin-Ildari AD (2014) A refined morphological analysis which clarifies phylogenetic relationships among the langurs and leaf monkeys of Asia. IPS 25th Congress, Hanoi, Vietnam. 

Carnation SL, Orr CM, Patel BA (2013) The relationship between thumb reduction and relative carpal volume in African colobines. Am J Phys Anthropol.. 150 (S56): 95.

Carnation SL (2012) A combined molecular/morphological analysis of colobine interrelationships and the phylogenetic position of Paracolobus.  Am J Phys Anthropol. 147(S54): 113.

Crevecoeur I, Tocheri MW, Due Awe R, Orr CM, Carnation S, Jungers WL (2012) The thumb of Homo floresiensis: first comparative analysis of the proximal and distal pollical phalanges from Liang Bua. Am J Phys Anthropol. 147(S54): 121.

Carnation S, Wallace IJ, Nakatsukasa M (2010) Relative Limb Strength in Paracolobus chemeroni. Am J Phys Anthropol. 141(S50): 77.

Richmond BG, Bennett MR, Harris JWK, Behrensmeyer AK, Braun DR, Carnation S, Chirchir H, Green DJ, Kura P, Mbua E (2010) The anatomy of footprints from Koobi Fora, Kenya. Am J Phys Anthropol. 141(S50): 197.