I am a lesbian and I am an assistant professor.//
I began as a middle school science teacher in Colorado, loved to teach, however I quickly realized obtaining a Ph.D. in Toxicology and becoming a biomedical researcher would be a great career to satiate my hunger for novel information. I have found that the stories are true: research is challenging and extremely competitive. However, being able to direct the course of my own inquiry has been life changing and completely fulfilling. I got my Ph.D. in 2013 from the University of Montana, I did a 5 year postdoctoral fellowship at the University of Minnesota, and recently was promoted to Assistant Professor at the UMN Medical School Duluth. I am a basic scientist who studies gene expression and characterizes the mechanisms behind turning genes “on” or “off” following exposure to various stressors. I am mostly a “wet bench” scientist, although I collaborate closely with bioinformatians. I still train scientists, in the laboratory as well as in the curriculum for medical students in lecture and in problem-based-learning. Training and inspiring youth to seek careers in STEM, particularly those who come from underrepresented populations and underserved communities is a major priority.