I am a vertebrate paleontologist broadly interested in using geological field and lab methods to elucidate evolutionary patterns in the fossil record. My research interests include the anatomy and evolution of early dinosaurs and their close kin, the use of geochemical proxies such as carbon isotope stratigraphy to characterize environmental and evolutionary change in the geologic record, and the impact of mass extinctions on the taxonomic diversity of nonmarine vertebrates.
My work is focused on the Early Jurassic Epoch (~201.3-174 million years ago) because it is an interesting interval of time bounded by drastic faunal change associated with mass extinctions which coincide with volcanic activity at large igneous provinces. In particular, I have recently been interested in what impact--if any--the environmental change which drove the Toarcian Ocean Anoxic Event (~183 million years ago) had on the evolution and extinction of vertebrate animals. My research has taken me from the deserts of the American Southwest to the mountains and streambeds of southern Japan.
I am currently a PhD candidate in the Department of Geology & Geophysics at the University of Utah working under the supervision of Randy Irmis. I was previously a MS student at the Jackson School of Geosciences at The University of Texas at Austin working under the supervision of Tim Rowe. Prior to that, I received my BS from the University of Maryland, where I worked under the supervision of Tom Holtz and Jay Kaufman as well as Matthew Carrano of the Smithsonian Institution National Museum of Natural History.
I am a drummer and can often be found back in Austin, Texas playing music whenever I get the opportunity. I also enjoy studying Japanese language, which comes in handy for my fieldwork in Japan.
Above: Typical outcrop of the Lower Jurassic Nishinakayama Formation, Toyota-chō, Yamaguchi Prefecture, Japan. July 2018.
Below: Collaborator Kentaro Izumi (Chiba University) labeling samples in the Nishinakayama Formation. July 2018.