Richard Leakey and Donald Johanson shared the stage at a historic event hosted by the American Museum of Natural History in New York City.

Don Johanson (L) and Richard Leakey, together at TBI's Ileret research facility.

Celebrating decades of groundbreaking exploration in East Africa, these renowned paleoanthropologists made a joint appearance to discuss the overwhelming evidence for evolution in the hominid fossil record and why understanding our evolutionary history is so important.

Known for such landmark discoveries as “Lucy” (Johanson) and “Turkana Boy” (Leakey), the work of these two scientists, over the last forty years, has produced much of the fossil evidence which forms our understanding of human evolution. Reviewing careers spanning forty-plus years, these men shared the stories behind their monumental finds, discussed how much the field of paleoanthropology has changed in the last few decades, and offered a look at what’s ahead in human evolutionary research.

The event was made possible through a joint partnership of the American Museum of Natural History, the Arizona State University Institute of Human Origins, and the Turkana Basin Institute.