Steve Ayala

City of Petaluma

Why did you choose to join the MSMVCD Board of Trustees? / Why is the mission of mosquito and vector control important to you?

My father and mother were active in community service as I grew up in the Sierra Nevada Mountains. My graduate training in biological science centered in parasitology and entomology. For 15 years I worked professionally in public health education and research, with emphasis on medically important insects and the diseases they carry. As a parasitologist I worked with health personnel and taught in the US and Latin America. After teaching, I wanted to continue putting my experience to practical use.

What is your relevant expertise?

Research and publications on malaria and other insect-borne infectious diseases in California and Latin America; teaching community and public health in Mexico, Ecuador, Colombia, California and Louisiana; teaching zoology with the Peace Corps in Ecuador; Construction work in California, US Forest Service seasonal fire suppression in California; Docent for Petaluma Wetlands Association.

Educational/Professional background:


  • BS in Biological Science from Saint Mary’s College
  • California (Biology, Zoology)
  • MSPH from the School of Public Health at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (Public Health, Medical Parasitology)
  • PhD from the School of Agricultural Sciences at the University of California, Berkeley (Medical Zoology)

Teaching experience:

  • Teaching assistant – Biology Department, Saint Mary’s College of California
  • Entomology Department, University of California at Berkeley
  • Associate Professor – Universidad Catolica in Quito, Ecuador; Associate, Assistant and full Professor – Universidad del Valle School of Medicine in Cali, Colombia (Head of Parasitology Section, Department of Microbiology)
  • Visiting Professor – Louisiana State University School of Medicine in New Orleans, Louisiana;
  • Visiting Professor – Tulane University School of Public Health in New Orleans, Louisiana