University of Florida
Biological Scientist II
I started working at the University of Florida in 2006, when I took the position of Biological Scientist for Dr. Nigel Harrison in the Plant Pathology Department at Fort Lauderdale Research and Education Center. Under Dr. Harrison's guidance I learned a lot about phytoplasma diseases, specifically Lethal Yellowing and Lethal Bronzing Diseases, that affect palm trees. When Dr. Harrison retired in 2016, I transferred to the Vector Entomology lab to help work on the same phytoplasma diseases, but from the side of the insect vector rather than just the phytoplasma or palms. The accumulated knowledge has helped me to be able to mentor graduate students, interns and visiting scientists, who are in the lab to research phytoplasma diseases for their masters or doctorate degrees, or just to learn specific methods and techniques for amplifying and identifying phytoplasmas.