Portrait: Katherine Nagel (In My Office)

Camera: Leica Monochrom
Exposure: 1/180
Aperture: f/1.4
Focal Length: 35mm
ISO: 2,500

I had the good fortune to have my friend Katherine Nagel drop by for a visit, while she was at the University of Utah delivering a seminar on her work.  Katherine is one of the people I look up to in science as one who manages to handle an accomplished career, yet balance a wonderful personal life that I had a small glimpse of when she and her husband were phenomenally welcoming to me last year in NYC, inviting me into their home to share a meal.  Even as mid-career faculty, I am not sure I’ve figured out the whole work/life balance and I admire those who have managed to figure it out so early in their careers.

Katherine studies olfaction circuitry and the biophysics of synaptic transmission in drosophila, a field that I am becoming more interested in as a model system for understanding other aspects of central nervous system function. Any insight we can have from additional perspectives in other model systems like drosophila are incredibly valuable insights into ways that we may be able to impact human therapies, and I want to learn as much as possible from careful and accomplished scientists like Katherine.


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