Nominated Office: At-Large Trustee
Affiliation: University of Wyoming
Position/title: Associate Professor
PhD institution: Harvard University (2004)
Areas of scientific interest:
- Protoplanetary disks
- Planet formation theory
- Exoplanet detection and characterization
AAS positions & dates:
- Committee on the Status of Women in Astronomy (2006 – 2012)
Other relevant positions and experience:
- Society of Physics Students National Council Member, Councilor for Zone 14 (2017 – 2020)
- Steering Committee Member for NExSS (NASA's Nexus for Exoplanet System Science) (2015 – present)
- Organizer of Habitable Worlds: A System Science Workshop in Laramie, WY, Nov 13-17, 2017
- US Extremely Large Telescope Key Science Program Participant (2018 – present)
- TESS Science Team Climate Committee Member (2018 – present)
- PI on multiple NASA Grants (ATP/XRP/ADAP/EPSCOR)
- HST Cycle 24 Peer Review Panel Member (2016)
- Grant Proposal Panel Reviewer for NASA and NSF
I believe that one of the AAS's most important jobs is reducing the barriers to participation in astronomy. This includes both opening doors to entering the field as well as increasing opportunities for career development to keep young astronomers in the field.
It is particularly important for the AAS to welcome groups that have historically been marginalized in astronomy based on gender, race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, disability, or any other attribute irrelevant to excellence in astronomy. We should hold those who harass folks from these marginalized groups accountable for their actions and sanction them. My work on the Committee of the Status of Women in Astronomy (CSWA) informs my view that we should strengthen and support the committees and working groups devoted to diversity efforts (such as SGMA, CSMA, CSWA, and WGAD) and facilitate communication between them since many members hold multiple identities.
The AAS also helps its members by creating opportunities to advance their careers in a variety of ways, such as advertising employment opportunities, sponsoring networking events, awarding prizes, and giving opportunities to present science at meetings. The work done by the Committee on Employment is vital to maintaining a diverse and vibrant workforce in astronomy. Support for AAS meetings is also important for these efforts, since these meetings represent a crucial networking opportunity for astronomers at all levels.
As a Trustee, I would work to implement policies that would help the AAS serve and support its members at all levels, from undergraduate to the most senior levels. I look forward to the chance to do this.