The 3rd generation of Leakey palaeoanthropologists, Louise was born and raised in Kenya spending much of her childhood in the deserts of northern Kenya, uncovering clues of our past. Educated both in Kenya and in the United Kingdom, she completed her PhD at University College London in 2001.
Currently she is a Research Assistant Professor at University of Stony Brook and a Director of the Turkana Basin Institute, a privately funded research facility for paleaoanthropological research with two field stations on the east and western shores of Lake Turkana.
Alongside her scientific interests and annual expeditions, Louise is a National Geographic Explorer in Residence, a Young Global Leader 2005, a pilot and a photographer, a sailor and a winemaker. She sits on the advisory board of Sea Shepherd International, who engage the Japanese whaling fleet in the southern ocean.
Louise is married to Emmanuel de Merode who is the Warden in Charge of Virunga National Park in Eastern Democratic Republic of Congo, home to some of the worlds few remaining mountain gorillas. They have two daughters Seiyia (5) and Alexia (3).