1. I was born and raised just outside of Cleveland, Ohio, but I’m a New England girl at heart. Growing up, I spent summers and holidays with family on the North Shore of Massachusetts (where my mom is from— and where I learned to love swimming in freezing ocean water!). I moved to New Hampshire for college and Boston for graduate school. Some of my favorite New England spots include the New Hampshire seacoast; the Berkshires; Newport, Rhode Island; Nantucket, Massachusetts; and Portland, Maine. I’m so glad that I now live just a short drive from so many of these places!  
  2. I went to boarding school for grades 9-12. Because the school was in my hometown, I didn’t live on campus, but I often ate all three meals in the dining hall, attended Saturday morning classes (not as bad as they sound!), and stayed at school until midnight or later for study sessions or extracurricular activities. We often ate dinner with teachers or visited their on-campus homes for homework help; I spent a lot of time struggling through precalculus problem sets at my math teacher’s kitchen table! Boarding school can be strange at times, but I loved the opportunity to spend so much time with my friends and teachers. (Two of my beloved teachers actually traveled from Ohio to Boston for my wedding!) I haven’t quite escaped the boarding school world as an adult; my first teaching job was at a summer program at Phillips Exeter Academy in NH, and I’ve since sent two Siena students to work at that same program (hi, Megan and Audrey!). 
  3. I am a classically trained clarinetist (or “clarinerd,” as we are also known). I almost attended a music conservatory instead of a regular college for undergrad, but I also had this hunch that I *just might* like studying literature, so I decided to pursue a B.A. in both English and Music.  
  4. I actually met my spouse, Matt— a fellow clarinerd— on the first day of college. At first, we saw each other as competition for the coveted clarinet spot in our college orchestra. Luckily, we both got in, and music has been a huge part of our love story ever since. We still perform together whenever we can— whether in our local orchestra here in the Capital Region, at friends’ weddings, or at impromptu hallway concerts in our apartment building during the pandemic. Our wedding was, unsurprisingly, a clarinet-centric affair; our college clarinet teacher played a solo piece during the ceremony that brought the whole room to tears, and our wedding cake topper (pictured below) was extra clarinerd-y.  
  5. My musical and literary nerddom has sent me to amazing places around the world. In college, I spent a semester abroad in Vienna, Austria, studying music history and clarinet performance and attending tons of operas and symphony concerts. In graduate school, I got to live in London two separate times to do archival research for my dissertation. 
  6. My mom and I are best friends. I owe so much to her, from my love of coffee, to my feminist politics, to my pursuit of an academic life. My mom is also a professor (in Nursing), so I grew up spending a lot of time on college campuses. One of our proudest mother-daughter moments was pulling off a surprise choreographed dance at my wedding. 
  7. I was terrified of dogs as a kid, but thanks to some quality time with my aunt’s sweet therapy dog Lilly, I overcame my fears and am now the proud ‘dog mom’ of Hazel, a four-year-old mini Australian labradoodle. Hazel loves visiting Siena and meeting students on the quad. In fact, she gets sad when we take walks on campus during the summer and there are no students around. (A few weeks ago, she sat on the Kiernan Hall lawn and refused to leave because she thought her student friends might make an appearance!)
  8. I always hated sports as a kid (see: clarinerd), but I now love to exercise. It all started in grad school when I signed up for a dance cardio class at a local church to try to de-stress. I fell in love with group fitness classes and have since taken up spinning, barre, weightlifting, and running. Hazel’s passion for hiking means that I also spend a lot of time trekking in the nearby Adirondacks and Berkshires.  
  9. I can’t cook at all (cereal is my specialty!), but I am passionate about food and food culture. I plan my travel around the different restaurants, bakeries, and coffee shops I want to try and love reading food blogs and chefs’ memoirs. I will go ridiculously out of my way to eat something delicious, whether that involves taking an extra-long train ride for a great bagel or adding 30 minutes to a drive for truly exceptional coffee. (Yes, I once waited three hours in line for the once-famous NYC ‘cronut’). 
  10. Matt, Hazel, and I live in an old, creaky brownstone in Albany’s Center Square neighborhood. Thanks to research by the Historic Albany Foundation, we learned that the house was built in 1894 for a man named John Sutliff, who owned a malt liquor business on nearby Hamilton Street. (Apparently our house was the party house!). Our house keeps us busy with plenty of projects, but we feel privileged to be its caretakers for a little while and love living in a historic neighborhood. Last summer, HBO filmed part of Season Two of “The Gilded Age” on our street!