About Alexis

My CV can be found here

A New Yorker at heart, I have lived and worked all across the state, banding birds in the New York City harbor and censusing insects in the Catskill Mountains.

I am a proud graduate of Cornell University’s College of Agriculture & Life Sciences and use its motto “Knowledge with Public Purpose” to guide my work, ensuring that my science is relevant to the stakeholders it impacts most – be it a global or local community. I received my B.S. in 2012 in Biological Sciences, with interdisciplinary minors in natural resource policy and environmental economics to contextualize my core scientific knowledge.

I completed my Ph.D. at Stanford University in 2017, where I was a Stanford Interdisciplinary Graduate Fellow. My research was supported by the NSF, the American Society of Mammalogists, the Paleontological Society, and numerous other external grants. I received the Denise Gaudreau Award for Excellence in Quaternary Studies from the American Quaternary Association for my dissertation. I was also a Haas Center Graduate Public Service Fellow, working to encourage students to step beyond campus boundaries and recognize that knowledge can be found outside of a classroom.

I was a Postdoctoral Research Fellow in Holocene paleoecology at the La Brea Tar Pits & Museum from 2017-2019, where I continue to be a Research Associate. I then completed a Postdoctoral Fellowship at the Institute for Low Temperature Science at Hokkaido University supported by the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science. I loved living in Japan and Sapporo is my favorite city! Lastly, I trained for a year in ancient DNA and zooarchaeological techniques at the Laboratories of Molecular Anthropology & Microbiome Research at the University of Oklahoma.

My intellectual home is island systems, and I continue to learn from comparisons of insular and continental patterns. I am fascinated by small mammals, particularly rodents and “insectivores”, or eulipotyphlans. I consider myself both a conservation biologist and a paleoecologist; I conduct research in these fields often separately and at times jointly. The Holocene is where the distinction between these two fields blurs, which is why I focus my studies on this time period.


My toolkit: Stable Isotopes – DNA – Radiocarbon Dating – Species Distribution Models – Camera Trapping – Morphometrics – Ecological Surveys – Natural History Collections

My study systems: The Caribbean – Japan – North America – South America

Professional Society Memberships:
American Quaternary Association
American Society of Mammalogists
Society for Conservation Biology
Society of Vertebrate Paleontology

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