Sheila has lived in Puerto Rico for 28 years and conducts research on the genetics of mahogany and Spanish cedar in Puerto Rico and Mexico. In Belize, she investigates the impact of the ancient Maya on tropical forest ecology, with her husband Nicholas Brokaw. Her experience includes archival research on tropical forestry topics. As a reviver of the International Society of Tropical Foresters, Sheila believes strongly in global community and information sharing to promote the conservation and sustainable use of tropical forest resources, and to address climate change. In 2016 on a visit to the collection on international forestry at the Oxford Radcliffe Library, she discovered that many old tropical forest data sets were still on paper and in danger of being lost. This was the origin of the effort to find and rescue these datasets, in collaboration with others.