1994 …2024

Research Activity per Year

Overview

Research Interests

Cellulase engineering and synergy for biomass conversion

Lab automation and high-throughput screening

Fungal molecular biology and fermentation

Non-dilute acid pretreatment technologies

Cellulose nanocrystal applications

Protein biochemistry (enzyme assays and kinetics; protein engineering; protein expression and purification, including fungal/yeast/bacterial; fungal transformation; enzyme synergy/optimization for hydrolysis of biomass; cellulase biochemistry; and protein production through fermentation up to 100L scale)

Biomass conversion (functional understanding of multiple biomass pretreatment strategies, including acid/alkaline/neutral; detailed knowledge of biomass-hydrolyzing enzyme function and interaction with biomass feedstocks; and experience with numerous feedstock types)

Project and personnel management (coordinate scientists and engineers with diverse backgrounds to solve complex problems; plan budgets and annual operating plans; develop productive and cooperative relationships with internal and external—including international—partners; plan and meet milestones; obtain funding through various granting agencies and partners; and recurring Program Chair/Co-Chair for the annual Symposium on Biotechnology for Fuels and Chemicals of ˜700 attendees)

Unique problem-solving abilities (innovative and successful approaches to high throughput screening in biomass recalcitrance; development of a robust Trichoderma reesei expression system for Cel7 and other proteins; and direct and systematic solving of research roadblocks through logic and out-of-the-box thinking) 

Professional Experience

Principal Scientist/Section Supervisor, NREL, Project Leader in BioEnergy, Science Center, Subtask Leader for Advanced Biological Deconstruction (2013–present)

Senior Scientist II, NREL, Subtask Leader for Oligomer Saccharification, Task Leader for Joint U.S. Department of Energy/U.S. Department of Agriculture Project Edenspace Cooperative Research and Development Agreement (2007–2013)

Senior Scientist, NREL, Subtask Leader for Hemicellulase and Accessory Enzymes (2002–2006)

Staff Scientist II, NREL (1999–2002)

Postdoctoral Research Fellow, NREL (1996–1999)

Adjunct Faculty, Red Rocks Community College (2000–2004)

Education/Academic Qualification

PhD, Microbiology, Colorado State University

Master, Microbiology, University of Wisconsin Oshkosh

Bachelor, Biology, University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point

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