Since January 2022, I've been the first Lunar and Planetary Laboratory Director's Postdoctoral Fellow at the University of Arizona in Tucson, under Prof. Mark Marley. We try to figure out how clouds and hazes work -- in everything from brown dwarfs to gas giants to ice/gas dwarfs to terrestrial worlds. We do this by combining my past and ongoing laboratory work; observations from JWST, HST, and other facilities; and computer models, attempting to untangle the complex physics and chemistry at work across all kinds of atmospheres.
I also still work with my PhD advisor Prof. Sarah Hörst and the PHAZER lab doing experiments. In addition, I am still an active member of the STARGATE collaboration trying to understand exoplanet data from HST and JWST.
During Fall 2021, I (virtually) was a Postdoctoral Research Scientist with Dr. Natasha Batalha at NASA Ames. We started working on including fractal particles in her open source virga cloud modeling code, a project that is ongoing now that I'm in Tucson.
In June 2021, I completed my PhD in the Earth and Planetary Sciences program at Johns Hopkins University, in Baltimore, MD. During my PhD, I worked with my advisor, Prof. Sarah Hörst, to simulate atmospheres in the PHAZER laboratory to understand the chemistry of hazes on exoplanets and Neptune's moon Triton. Under Prof. Nikole Lewis of Cornell University, I also computationally modeled exoplanet atmospheres, combining information from the lab and observations from Hubble.
I was a NASA Earth and Space Sciences Fellow in Astrophysics for 2018-2021 (check out tips and tricks for the NESSF/FINESST, my successful proposal, and several other examples over at my friend and colleague Michael's website!).
Me in Rocky Mountain National Park, learning that hiking is actually fun!
Before Baltimore, I spent a weird year in Denver learning to love hiking and to hate snow. Before that, I was at Barnard College of Columbia University in New York, where I majored in Astrophysics and spent a lot of time in various theatres (building and painting sets, running all over NYC to find that one exact prop, performing Shakespeare, making sure the lead actors knew their lines, dancing in various productions, actually seeing shows when I scrounged a ticket, etc.). I also learned a lot about queer theory, the evils of corporate feminism, and social justice. I ended up minoring in Science & Public Policy, where I honed my skills in these areas, and I’m passionate about improving the way we do science and who gets to participate. As part of that endeavor, I spent Fall 2019 at the National Academies of Science, Engineering, and Medicine with the Space Studies Board, where I helped with the Astro2020 Decadal Survey, the Solar and Space Physics Midterm Report, and planning for the 2023-2033 Planetary Science Decadal Survey.
I grew up in Kansas City, Missouri, and I’ll fight you on the best barbecue and coffee in the city. Also, as someone from KC, it’s my duty to inform you that KC has the second most boulevards in the world (after Paris), the second most fountains in the world (after Rome), and the second most theatres per capita (after NYC). We are number two!
These days, when not thinking about clouds, hazes, and planets, I can be found doing yoga, trying to run ever longer distances, cooking beautiful and seasonal meals, snuggling with my two cats, trying to turn my Baltimore backyard into a fairy garden utopia Tucson rooftop into a flowery desert oasis, or reading/bingeing sci-fi and fantasy novels/television.
If you read all the way to here, you seem into my ramblings, so feel free to check out my Twitter for more of that :)