top of page



My advisor, Dr. Nathan J.B. Kraft. So many amazing grad students and postdocs that have mentored and supported me in our lab- Dr. Gaurav Kandlikar, Dr. Marcel Vaz, Kenji Hayashi, Dr. Andy Kleinhessellink, Dr. Samantha Catella, Dr. Hannah Carrol, Dr. Claire Fortunel.
Awesome undergrads who have been essential assistants in the field and the lab - Heather Lindsay, Megan Clark, Ian Morris, Leontyne Henderson, Leah Andino, Lidoor Levy, Abita Venkatesh, Anmol Dhaliwal.
Wonderful friends and family who keep me sane and even occasionally come do fieldwork with me in the intense heat or rain.

The land

I acknowledge the Chumash peoples as the traditional caretakers of the land where much of my research takes place. The Chumash territory, which expanded roughly from Morro Bay to Malibu, inland to Kern county and some of the channel islands, has been inhabited by humans for at least 13,000 years and at the time of European arrival, there were over 150 Chumash villages and towns. Today’s Sedgwick Reserve is located between two of the largest Chumash towns in the Santa Ynez valley; Soxtonokmu’ to the northwest and Kalawashaq’ to the south. The area between was likely used for hunting and gathering and as a trade route between towns. Salvia columbariae, one of my study species, was a very important resource whose seeds were gathered and cultivated due to their high nutritional value by native people all over Southern California. Some names for it include, ilépesh (Barbareño Chumash), ‘itepesh (Ventureño Chumash), paanihac (Serrano), pasal (Cahuilla), and pashal (Luiseño).

The Spanish began to settle the territory in ~1770 and forced the Chumash people to relocate to their Christian missions where many died of European diseases and the rest were subjected to forced labor and a suppression of their culture. Despite the adversity from colonists, the Chumash people are thriving today and an integral part of the community around Sedgwick reserve. Santa Ynez reservation lies just a few miles southwest of my field site. The reservation covers a small fraction of the land that was stolen but its community is actively expanding it with the recent addition of the camp 4 land in 2019.

To Learn More:

bottom of page