I grew up in Knoxville, Tennessee, close to the heart of the Great Smoky Mountain National Park. I attended the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, where I completed a B.Sc. in the department of Biochemistry and Cellular and Molecular Biology with minors in chemistry and German. There I worked the lab of Dr. Joshua Bembenek on a project investigating the spatiotemporal organizing of different cellular components after cytokinesis. I then spent two years at the National Institutes of Health (NIDDK/NIH) in Bethesda, Maryland, where I worked with Dr. Andy Golden. There I used CRISPR/Cas9 to recreate and model different rare genetic diseases using Caenorhabditis elegans, and performed screens to elucidate their cellular pathologies and identify potential treatment options. Now at the University of Colorado, Boulder, I am in the Arnoult lab where I study how cells choose a pathway for DNA double strand break repair and am also working on elucidating how telomeres avoid standard DNA damage repair pathways.
If I’m ever not in lab, I’m climbing or backpacking in the Rocky Mountains.