Leyla Cárdenas is a Chilean scientist, researcher and academic who became the first Dean of the Faculty of Science at the Universidad Austral de Chile (UACH).

Her passion for the ocean and nature was born during her childhood, when curiosity and the search for answers motivated her to explore, travel and log the daily discoveries she made outdoors. She later studied Marine Biology at the same faculty she leads today and obtained a PhD in Biological Sciences with a major in Ecology at the Catholic University.

His work has focused on marine fauna and studies in the region of Magallanes and Chilean Antarctica.