Background

At my core, I am an observational astronomer, and I have been primary investigator for projects on three telescopes—Very Large Array (VLA), Green Bank Telescope (GBT), and Gemini Observatory North. I have nearly 200 hours of hands-on observing experience with the GBT, and I have prepared target lists for 13 distinct projects in graduate school comprising ~940 total hours of observations.

Though the bulk of my training is in radio astronomy, I actively sought out involvement with optical and infrared instruments in an effort to broaden my research horizons and study Galactic star formation across many wavelengths. From single-dish mapping and individual pointings with the GBT to interferometric observations with the VLA to optical observations on Maunakea, I have a breadth of experience across astronomy.

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Research Interests

My work focuses mainly on Galactic high-mass star formation. Throughout graduate school, I have worked with several teams to provide a complete census of Galactic HII regions. I have quite a bit of observational experience with radio recombination line and molecular gas observations of Galactic star forming regions.

This work spans from the most distant areas of high-mass star formation in our Galaxy (the Outer Scutum-Centaurus Arm, OSC) to the faintest population of B-stars still able to produce a detectable HII region. Since high-mass stars form preferentially in spiral arms and have exceedingly short lifetimes compared to the age of our Galaxy, completing the census of Galactic HII regions also gives us a global picture of the current structure and high-mass star formation within the Milky Way.

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Current Position

Postdoctoral Fellow, Green Bank Observatory

My postdoctoral position in Green Bank is 50% individual research, 50% service to the observatory.

I am particularly interested in the Observatory's increased high-frequency observing capabilities (up to frequencies of 116 GHz). My current work with the Green Bank Telescope involves molecular gas observations of the Milky Way's most distant star formation regions with the Argus instrument. Argus, a 16-beam array operating from 74-116 GHz allows fast mapping of CO, HCN, HCO+ and many other molecular and dense gas tracers.

My service time is varied and interesting, from serving as "project friend" for observers on site, to testing and developing instrumentation, and to helping guide discussions on the future of radio astronomy.

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Other Interests

My siblings and I are working to redevelop property in our hometown of Ford City, Pennsylvania. We're poetically incorporated as Constellations, LLC. The stars in a constellation are linked only by human imagination. Together, we are helping to revitalize our Rust Belt town and bring these 100+ year old beauties back to their former glory.