About Me


Author. Geographer. Amateur Adventurer.

There was a moment, when I was 16 and standing in the rubble of an 18th-century church in Gulfport, Mississippi, that I realized I wanted more. More answers. More results. More time.

My life has been a perpetual pursuit of knowledge, a never-ending journey to answer the existential questions about the Earth and the creatures who inhabit it.

As a kid, I asked “why” to everything – which is what led me to Syracuse University. I first sought to be a documentary film-maker, and then I committed myself to being a journalist. I felt the need to give a voice to the voiceless, to cover wars and disasters, poverty and inequality, and social injustice in every place and form it manifests.

undefinedBut life interrupted – as it so often does – and I found myself raising a child by myself whilst taking classes and working 60 hours per week just to pay rent. My world-view shifted. I quickly became dissatisfied with simply reporting the problems of the world and shifted to being a part of the solution. I lived through Hurricane Katrina, and the lessons that storm have defined much of who I am. So as I gravitated toward science, environmental hazards and disasters became the focus of my academic journey.

Throughout my undergraduate career at Syracuse University, my graduate education at Louisiana State University, and now my doctoral studies at Florida State University, I’ve studied applied climatology, natural hazards and communications – the sheet music to the soundtrack of my life. I never “dropped” my journalism background – in fact, even though it extended my time in school, I finished both degrees in Geography and Journalism at Syracuse, and stuck with mass communication as my minor at LSU.  I use my journalism background as a way to make me a better communicator so that I can continue to represent my own research and the research of others to the full spectrum of diversity in society.

My time at Syracuse transformed me into someone who barely resembled who I was when I arrived on the hill just five years prior: I am now a vegetarian, speak in spatial and temporal scales, and am a GIS connoisseur.  Above all, I like to think discovering geography was like finding religion for me. It changed the core of who I am. LSU had an equally significant impact, but in other, more deeply personal ways. I learned a lot about inequality, injustice and the power of ignorance.

Going into my doctoral studies at Florida State University, I will always be dedicated to truth and justice- the two pillars of my two majors. I hope to serve as a scientist who helps us understand the world a little bit better, so that we can be better caretakers of this beautiful, fragile and resilient planet.

View my resume or CV.

31 thoughts on “About Me

  1. When I went to FSU there was a class we took called Computer Ethics. They taught that it is a professional’s duty to evaluate less that ethical situations, and act by taking lead and bringing the issue to attention, and when all else fails, refusing to do what is unethical. That you are being smeared and retaliated against by the state and governor is horrible and I hope bigger and brighter things are ahead for your career. You did your duty as a professional, and I think a lot of people see that. Good luck and thank you for bringing these injustices to our attention!

  2. My company handled much of the logistics and recovery within Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama after many hurricanes between 2002-2006. We were stationed with AshBritt in Gulfport during Katrina in 2005-2006. At the time, we were using GIS to locate impassable debris and routing supplies around it. My current employer handles a great deal of work in GIS on a global scale, and I respect your work and contributions. We’re following your story with great interest.

  3. Well put. Impressive reaction to the government manipulation. Most of the population has become too jaded to the way our governments are for sale. The news media should report more of what you have revealed and of government wrong doings in general..

  4. I believe you and encourage you (and your colleagues whom I hope will come forward) to stay strong in the fight for the truth. The politics here are disgusting. I say: bravo to you for literally being a genuine heroine. Thank you.

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