Author Bios

Dennis E. Desjardin is Professor of Biology at San Francisco State University. He received a Master's Degree from San Francisco State University (1985) studying with Dr. Harry D. Thiers, and a PhD from the University of Tennessee (1989) under the tutelage of Dr. Ronald H. Petersen. He also trained with Drs. Alexander H. Smith, Rolf Singer, Meinhard Moser and Egon Horak. Desjardin is a Fellow of the California Academy of Sciences, and a Fellow of the Mycological Society of America who awarded him the Alexopoulos Prize for outstanding research, and the William H. Weston Award for teaching excellence. He has published over 120 scientific papers on the taxonomy and evolution of mushroom-forming fungi in which he described 225 new species and 7 new genera. He has active research projects in the Hawaiian Islands, Micronesia, Thailand, Malaysia, Indonesia, Brazil, and the African islands of São Tome and Principe. A recent interest is in the origin and evolution of bioluminescent fungi. Born and raised in Crescent City, California, he has been collecting and studying California mushrooms for over 50 years.

Michael Wood, a California native, is a computer consultant by profession, and a mycologist and photographer by obsession.  He is a past president of the Mycological Society of San Francisco and chair of the MSSF systematics committee.  He is the publisher and webmaster for MykoWeb and The Fungi of California websites and former webmaster for the MSSF and the North American Mycological Association (NAMA) websites. He has been an avid mushroom collector, photographer, and taxonomist for over 30 years. His mushroom photographs have been published in many scientific journals, plus numerous books, magazines, newspapers, and websites. He has led numerous workshops and countless forays for the MSSF and others. Besides “California Mushrooms”, he is currently collaborating on the forthcoming book “Mushrooms of the Great Smoky Mountains”.


Frederick A. Stevens has a doctorate in Botany from UCLA. He has photographed and studied the macrofungi of the San Francisco Bay Area for over 20 years, with a special interest in Gasteromycetes and the genus Agaricus. He coauthors a web site documenting the mushrooms of California ( that currently has descriptions and photographs of over 500 species. He is a past president of the Mycological Society of San Francisco, has led numerous mushroom walks, and consults with physicians and veterinarians on mushroom poisonings.