My dad was a high school physics teacher and so I grew up surrounded by physics problems and enjoyed time in my Dad's lab. When I went to college I was an undeclared major but I took one physics class and I was hooked. I earned my PhD at Indiana University, graduating in 2008 with a focus on High Energy Physics. For my doctorate research, I measured the lifetime of the charmed B meson at the D-Zero experiment at Fermilab. After I graduated, I took on a position as a software developer for Obtiva, a small consulting company in Chicago (which was recently acquired by Groupon). However, I found myself missing the world of physics and accepted a postdoc position with Heidi Schellman at Northwestern in the summer of 2010.

For my research, I am searching for the Higgs boson at the D-Zero experiment as well as doing some work on the new g-2 experiment at Fermilab. I am interested in the search for the Higgs boson because it's the last particle in the standard model that has yet to be discovered. It's exciting to be involved with this research because, while we might not find it at the Tevatron, being a part of a group that is in the middle of such a search is fun work. The g-2 experiment was an experiment at Brookhaven Lab in New York and we would like to perform the experiment again at D-Zero, but with improved precision. The plan as it stands now is to move the magnet and the muon storage ring from Brookhaven to Fermilab. We are in the very beginning of this project and so are working on research and development aspects of this experiment.
Since I do my research at Fermilab, I get to work there a couple days a week (I live in Chicago, so I try and limit my commuting time). Working at the lab is fun because you are surrounded by so many physicists and smart, interesting people. It's one of the best parts of my job. In addition to all the great people, it's very rewarding to work on an analysis for months and months and then see it presented at a big conference. You know that all the hard work paid off when you can see your analysis presented to others in the field.

On a personal note, I live in Chicago with my husband, Jason, and our 21 month old daughter, Lucille. Lucille was named after my grandmother. We live about a mile from the lakefront path and spend a considerable amount of time on the lakefront running and visiting the various parks that are there. I have run the Chicago marathon three times and hope to run it again in a year or two, but with a toddler running around, finding the time to train has been tough. I grew up in Chicago and I enjoy taking my daughter to all the places my parents took me as a kid. In any free time that I can find I love to take pictures and explore the city with my family.