Nature Ecology and Evolution
Ruth D. Gates (1962–2018). Coral biologist and tireless reef advocate. Dr Ruth Gates achieved widespread recognition with her research on coral biology and human-assisted coral evolution. Her untimely death has not only deprived the field of a talented scholar and indefatigable mentor, but has also caused the loss of a tireless and charismatic advocate for coral reefs. This is exemplified by her appearance in the Emmy-award-winning documentary Chasing Coral (https://www.chasingcoral.com). Ruth brought an irrepressibly positive attitude to her career, and her personality and scientific acumen propelled her research, and the scientists she mentored, to international prominence. Funding from the philanthropist Paul Allen provided high-profile recognition of the importance of her research, and allowed Ruth to advance her agenda to harness the basic biology of corals to conserve coral reefs, in part through the development of ‘super corals’ with enhanced resistance and resilience to climate change.