A man you might call “Denver's Paleontologist-In-Chief” is heading to the Smithsonian. Kirk Johnson has been the chief curator at the Denver Museum of Nature and Science for more than two decades, and he's ending his career at the museum on a high note. Johnson led the huge excavation near Snowmass of mastodons, mammoths, ice age bison, and giant sloths. He also studied the oldest rainforest in the world south of Denver.  He’ll lead the National Museum of Natural History in Washington D.C. beginning later this month.  He spoke with CPR’s Andrea Dukakis.

[Photo: Courtesy of Image Archives/Denver Museum of Nature and Science]