I was born in Rochester, NY to a guitar playing music man and a hot little groupie mama. The extent of my outdoor adventures involved fishing with my dad from a pier in Lake Ontario. I spent most of my youth learning ballet, jazz, and tap dancing and emulating Madonna with my best friend in my pink walled attic bedroom. I dreamed of going to NYC and dancing on Broadway, or being a comedienne with my own variety show.
I discovered a love for literature and poetry, and began to experiment with writing. I decided to pursue it as a career, and began attending Syracuse University in fall 1992 as a flannel clad, grungy English major. Within a year I had been lured to the glamorous world of geology after taking “rocks for jocks” as a science requirement. I abandoned my dream of writing, exchanged flannel and Doc Martens for fleece and hiking boots, and threw myself into the pursuit of science. The rocks had called me home.
It wasn’t until my PhD studies at UCLA that I came face to face with the reality of doing actual geologic research, in the middle of nowhere, Tibet. And so began my high altitude journey to mountain womanhood, my biggest adventure beyond my comfort zone.
I hope that my story resonates with women who might be unsure about making it in a male dominated profession. My writing is raw, nothing held back, and I hope that my candid words will bring laughter as well as inspiration. What excites me most about writing is the potential to entertain while provoking interesting and meaningful discussions about women, science, and more!
Today, I am the associate department head and a senior lecturer in the University of Arizona department of geosciences. I am a mother to two young sons, and remain married to the mountain man I met and fell for in graduate school. We have adventured to many places together, including kayaking along the rugged NaPali coast of Kauai, and trekking into the impenetrable forest of Uganda to track mountain gorillas. While I live in Tucson, my heart resides on the north shore of Kauai, where we are currently on sabbatical.