Erich Jarvis is a Professor of neurobiology and genomics at the Rockefeller University in New York, and with the Howard Hughes Medical Institute. He uses innovative research techniques to study what songbirds and other species can help reveal about the evolution of human language and its disorders. His work thus far has resulted in some compelling hypotheses, including: establishing a close anatomical similarity in the brain mechanisms that control vocal communication in songbirds and humans. Erich graduated from Hunter College in New York City with a bachelor's degree in Biology and Mathematics and later earned his Ph.D. Neurobiology and Animal Behavior from Rockefeller University. He continued as a postdoc at Rockefeller, before becoming an Assistant Professor at Duke University. He later returned to Rockefeller as a full professor, where he presently does his research. Erich is the recipient of many awards and honors for his achievements, including: one of the highest awards given by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) -- the NIH Director's Pioneer Award, and one of the highest given by the National Science Foundation (NSF) -- the NSF Alan T. Waterman Award. He is also a research investigator of the prestigious Howard Hughes Medical Institute, and recently received an NIH transformative R01 award. Future efforts are focused on testing hypothesis of vocal learning evolution in mice.