I was born in Los Alamos, NM, the "Land of Enchantment" a very long time ago. I obtained a BS (Chemistry and Criminal Justice majors) from Northern Arizona University and an MS in Forensic Science from the University of New Haven. I joined the New Mexico State Police in 1983 and worked as a forensic chemist and crime scene processor. Next I ventured to Los Alamos National Laboratory in 1985 as a technical staff member. During this time, I obtained a PhD from New Mexico State University. I made the leap to academia in 1994, first at Eastern Washington University where I taught undergraduate chemistry courses and assisted the university and the Washington State Patrol in developing a forensic chemistry major. In 2003, I joined the Chemistry Department at West Virginia University. Currently I impose my will on the next generation by mentoring chemistry and forensic chemistry students from the BS to post-doctoral level. Our group is active in many forensic and analytical chemistry research areas. I am a member of the Scientific Working Group for Seized Drug Analysis, a commissioner on the Forensic Education Program Accreditation Commission (FEPAC), and was recently appointed to the new National Commission on Forensic Science. In addition to numerous research articles, she has authored and edited many text and reference books including Forensic Chemistry and the 4th edition of Forensic Science: An Introduction to Scientific and Investigative Techniques.
Areas of Research / Professional Expertise
Forensic chemistry, forensic toxicology, ion mobility spectrometry, chemometrics, energetics and explosives, gunshot residue
I love making homebrew beer as well as gardening and quilting. When the weather is willing, I break out a kayak or scuba gear and have a grand time in, near, on, or under the water