A primary focus of my research is to evaluate evolutionary processes in the paleotropics. My research initiatives address:

  • biotic replacement of one group by another in tropical ecosystems
  • rates, magnitudes and timing of the replacements
  • tropical environmental processes

My research area is focused in the Caribbean region, and my students and I pursue field investigations in Texas, Florida, Puerto Rico, the Dominican Republic and Barbados.

Skills and Expertise:

  • Polyplacophora
  • Mollusca
  • Cretaceous
  • Paleobiology
  • Sedimentology
  • Rudist bivalves


  • paleontology
  • paleoecology
  • Caribbean reefs
  • Caribbean archaeology
  • Olduvai Gorge

The ultimate focus of my work is to evaluate the complexity of paleobiologic and ecologic factors that combined to allow the reef ecosystem to persist over 600 million years of Earths history.

Her research examines ancient greenhouse world reefs to evaluate what was, explores today’s reefs to monitor their health, and connects the two to provide a perspective of the future health of the reef ecosystem from records of deep geological time.

An extension of my research to the Olduvai Gorge basin focuses on evaluation of the finer points of paleotropical environmental reconstructions at the time of evolving lineages of hominids.

My research explores the evolutionary history of ecosystems to evaluate biodiversity fluctuations under Earth’s changing climate regimes.

My research examines ancient ecosystems and compares them to the modern to provide a temporal perspective on future ecosystem health.

Research: Reefs and climate change; Cretaceous marine ecosystems; Invertebrate paleontology,

Research Area:

  • Environmental Science

Research Interests:

  • geobiology; Caribbean geology; reefs. evolution of rudistid bivalves; paleoclimate
PhD, University of Colorado at Boulder, Geological Sciences, 1993
MS, University of Colorado at Boulder, Geological Sciences, 1984
BA, University of Colorado at Boulder, Geological Sciences, 1981
south america virgin islands west indies caribbean islands caribbean sea tropical zone costa rica cuba dominican republic jamaica mexico united states geology paleontology