I’m an Assistant Professor of Astronomy at the California Institute of Technology. I am interested in binary stars, black holes, and related stellar exotica. My group uses a combination of large-scale surveys, targeted observations of individual objects, and theoretical stellar evolution calculations to better understand how these objects form, evolve, and interact with their surroundings. I am also interested in Milky Way stellar populations, galaxy formation, and statistical astronomy. Most generally, I like exploring astronomical datasets, learning new things, and developing methods to extract information from data. I have been called the “black hole destroyer” but am working to make my net black hole count positive.
I grew up in Roseburg, Oregon. I was an undergraduate at Yale University (B.S., astrophysics, 2016), a graduate student at UC Berkeley (Ph.D., astrophysics, 2021), and a postdoc at the Harvard/Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics (Junior Fellow, 2021-2023). I moved to Caltech in 2023. I also hold a recurring visitor appointment at the Max Planck Institute for Astronomy in Heidelberg. Besides astronomy, I like food, running, hiking and cycling, playing chess, and memes.
I am happy to talk anytime with Caltech students and current or prospective postdocs interested in working on a research project.
Information about the Caltech graduate program is available here. I receive too many pre-admissions inquiries to respond to individually, but I will be happy to discuss research opportunties in my group if you are admitted to our program.