- Please tell us a little about yourself.
Where did you grow up? Where did you go to school?
I was born in Denver, CO, 1956 and grew up in Boulder, CO. My entire educational track is as follows: Columbine Elementary School (1967); Centenial Junior High School (1971); Boulder High School (1974); University of Colorado (1 year); Carleton College (BA, Chemistry, 1981); University of Minnesota (PhD, Biochemistry, 1989); Carnegie Mellon University (postdoctoral fellow); University of Wisconsin (Assistant Professor, 1993).
- Where did you carry out your postdoctoral research?
Department of Chemistry, Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh, PA.
- As a child, who was your biggest influence?
Mr. Geiger, high school geology teacher; Mr. Kildahl, high school algebra teacher; and Mr. Ogata, high school chemistry teacher.
- Why did you decide to study science?
Because I love the natural world.
- Why did you come to Madison? When?
Greatest opportunity in the world. Summer, 1993.
- What do you like most about being a professor?
Following my interests and intuition while working with the very smartest students and colleagues around. There is something new and challenging every day.
- What is the focus of your research?
Understanding and increasing appreciation of the marvels in the natural world.
- What do you consider your major accomplishments?
Helping others achieve their goals and success.
- What advice would you provide to a new assistant professor who is just starting his/her career?
Follow your interests and intuition, and always remember you can’t do it alone.
- When you are not working, what do you like to do?
Tend my daffodils, cook something new, and play some music.
- What is your favorite place in Madison?
The secret beaches along the shoreline going north and west from Picnic Point.
- Favorite Quote
Build Back Better
- Friends Describe Me as
Ready to go
- Fantasy Dinner Guests
People who know what they are talking about but are still good listeners.
- Best Advice I Ever Received
“Don't promise what you can’t deliver…”
- My Undergrad Alma Mater
Carleton College, ‘81
- My Worst Subject In School
- If I Weren't A Professor, I Would
Work with my hands
- In College I Drove
- Favorite Books
“Ceol Rince na hEireann” (the red one)
“Popular Mechanics Home How-To”
“Salt: A World History”
“Girl with the Dragon Tattoo” trilogy.
- Favorite City
Sapporo, Japan or Copenhagen, Denmark.
- Favorite Movies
Recently: “Enola Holmes”
“Self-Made: Inspired by the Life of Madam C.J. Walker”
“Guardians of the Galaxy"
- Favorite Coffee
Just Coffee’s “Wake the Dead”
- Current Research
Learning what we can do about lignin besides burn it or bury it.
- My Latest Accomplishment
Getting the Biotechnology Training Grant renewed for another 5-year period.
- Nobody Knows I…
Walked to the Chomolungma base camp and back