Attended KCSS • 1980–1985
I am incredibly lucky to work in a field that combines elements of my favourite things; science, writing, and the outdoors. While at KCSS I was lucky enough to have had excellent English and Science teachers. I was encouraged to pursue further education, particularly in Science, a discipline were one still sees few women. KCSS was also a good place to pursue the sports that I still enjoy today.
KCSS was only the start of my career as a student. I attended Guelph University for both my Bachelors and Masters degrees. It was here that I became interested in applying molecular biology techniques to the study of population structure. And in particular I was interested in how this could be used to assist in fisheries management. I was also very lucky to have Dr. Moira Ferguson as a Masters supervisor. She is well respected and provides an excellent role model for women interested in the sciences. Graduate work was very demanding but offered many unique experiences. I traveled the Gulf of St. Lawrence on a research vessel and got to spend many days in Algonquin Park sampling brook trout. After leaving Guelph, I went to McMaster University for my Doctorate project. This work was done at a research laboratory run by the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources (OMNR). I then worked for the OMNR for several years as a researcher and biologist. In 2001 I accepted a position at the Great Lakes Science Center in Ann Arbor Michigan. Since then I have enjoyed working with a great group of people in several fisheries-related disciplines. My current research program involves the use of genetic technology to develop economical, efficient, reliable procedures to evaluate species and stock identity in the Great Lakes region. The information is used to manage wild populations, hatchery supplementation programs, devise informative indicators for exploited fisheries, and determine stock identity of fish involved in harvest disputes. The highlight of my work to date came last August when I had the pleasure of giving a keynote address at the Ninth International Symposium on the Biology and Management of Coregonid Fishes in Olsztyn, Poland.
My personal interests are wide and varied. I play hockey, step dance, kayak, and study kendo. The highlight of my hockey career came in 2001. I was playing for Peterborough and we won the AAA division of the Ontario Woman’s Hockey Association. I also enjoy knitting, photography, and reading. I am a volunteer reading coach at Washtenaw Community College in Ann Arbor as part of their Project Genesis. The goal of this program is to help adult students at the college improve their levels of reading.