I do really enjoy and embrace any opportunity to share what I am learning and create conversations through presentations, hands-on activities and, more recently, through blogs.

Here are some links to featured interviews and conversations


  • 2019-04-16 International Astronomical Union Public Lecture – “A Cosmic Tasting Menu: Laboratory Astrochemistry and Space Exploration” Cambridge, United Kingdom [General Audience]
  • 2019-02-13 SETI Panel. NASA’s Next Big Space Mission. Origins Space Telescope  You Tube Link [General Audience]
  • 2019-02-12  Interviewed for Scientific American  “Astronomers Traverse the Globe to Shadow “Lucky Stars” [Article]
  • 2019-01-01 Wrote Article in Sky at Night Magazine on SOFIA [Article]


  • 2018-11-03 Bay Area Science Festival – San Francisco, CA [STEM]
  • 2018-10-30 “SOFIA Results Inspire New Questions”, NASA Armstrong Center Colloquia [Department Seminar]
  • 2018-10-11 NASA in Silicon Valley Live – Robotic Exploration of the Moon Video Chat-Show [General Audience]
  • 2018-07-18 “Current and Future Studies in Star and Planet Formation with SOFIA”, COSPAR, Pasadena, CA [Conference]
  • 2018-06-04 “SOFIA Our Interstellar Origins / Path to Life” AAS, Denver, Colorado [Conference]
  • 2018-05-02 “SOFIA Basics and Exploration Opportunities” SOFIA Workshop, University of Stuttgart [Department Seminar]
  • 2018-05-18 “SOFIA Recent Science Highlights and Upcoming Opportunities”, NOAO, Tucson, Arizona [Department Seminar]
  • 2018-05-09 STEM Charter Middle School, Sparta, NJ. Met with  nearly 300 6th, 7th and 8th graders and had conversations about NASA, and science, astronomy & planetary science exploration.  Article in the NJ Herald. [STEM]
  • 2018-04-10 Invited talk at the NASA Astrophysics  Laboratory Workshop, Athens, GA on “SOFIA-enabled science lab astro and theory connections” [Conference]
  • 2018-03-19 California Academy of Sciences, San Francisco, CA. A public lecture on our increasing ability to look at our universe in infrared & other wavelengths, and the beautiful, dynamic, extraordinary secrets it reveals. [General Audience]
  • 2018-03-09 Yale University “Star & Planet Formation Studies and Opportunities with SOFIA” [Department Seminar]



  • 2016-09-28 “Pluto Revealed! First Results from the Historic First Flyby of the Pluto System” Liverpool John Moores University, Liverpool, England [Department Seminar]

Photo by @AstronoSi

  • 2016-08-18 “Evolving views of the outer solar system: new insights from NASA’s New Horizons mission’s historic first Pluto fly-by,” NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Maryland [Department Seminar]
  • 2016-06-15 “A New View of the Pluto System,” Endeavor STEM Teaching Certificate Program Webinar [STEM]
  • 2016-06-29 “The Configurable Aperture Space Telescope,” Society of Photo-Optical Engineering, Edinburgh, Scotland [Conference Talk]
  • 2016-04-19 “The communication subsystem of NASA’s Pluto Fly-by New Horizons,” Spacecraft Seventeenth IEEE International Vacuum Electronics Conference [Conference Keynote]

  • 2016-03-07 “Ice Chemistry of Pluto & Charon,” Department of Analytical Chemistry, University of Wisconsin-Madison, Madison, Wisconsin [Department Seminar]
  • 2016-03-04 “Pluto & Beyond; What we know now,” Space Forum Series, Chautauqua, Boulder, Colorado. [General Audience]
  • 2016-02-06 “Optimizing Expectations to Achieve Effective Engagement: Experiences in communicating space mission science and engineering,” Annual Graduate Women in Science (GWIS) conference-Voices, State College, PA. [Conference Keynote]


  • 2016-01-23 “Science of Pluto,” Denver, Colorado. Zonta International Amelia Earhart Award Ceremony [STEM]
  • 2016-01-11 “Latest Results from the New Horizons Mission,” 2016 AAPT (American Association of Physics Teachers) Winter Meeting, New Orleans, LA. [Conference Keynote]


  • 2015-12-17 “What’s with Pluto?” Yale Elementary School, Aurora, Colorado. 4th grade [STEM]
  • 2015-12-04 “What have we learned from exploring Pluto?” International Lunar Observatory Association (ILOA) Galaxy Forum, Scarsdale, New York [General Audience, STEM]
  • 2015-11-10 “Pluto & Charon Light Curves,” American Astronomical Society, Division of Planetary Sciences, Virginia [Conference Talk]
  • 2015-10-11 “I *heart* Pluto,” Northern Colorado Maker Faire, Loveland, Colorado [General Audience]
  • 2015-10-05 “Pluto Revealed: First Results from the First Mission to this distant world,” Immaculate Heart Academy, Washington Township, New Jersey [STEM]
  • 2015-10-03 “Results from the New Horizons Mission,” Northeastern regional AAPT (American Association of Physics Teachers) Meeting, Paramus, New Jersey. [Conference Keynote]


  • 2015-07-31 “Frontier Exploration: NASA’s New Horizons spacecraft reaches the Pluto System in July 2015,” Project ASTRO, High School and Community College Science Teachers, Baltimore, Maryland [STEM]


  • 2015-04-28 “New Horizons Mission Status,” NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Maryland [Department Seminar]
  • 2015-04-18 “New Horizons,” University of Colorado Astronomy Days/Interactive Planetarium Display, Boulder, Colorado [General Audience, STEM]
  • 2015-03-11 Science Fair Judge, Thornton Middle School, Thornton, CO [STEM]
  • 2015-03-03 “Configurable Aperture Space Telescope,” Early Stage Technology Workshop-Astrophysics & Heliophysics, Arlington, Virginia [Conference Talk]


  • 2014-12-22 “The Science of New Horizons,” Mount Stromlo Observatory, Canberra, Australia [Department Seminar]
  • 2014-12-04 High School AP Chemistry Classroom lectures on Pluto Ice Chemistry, Brighton, Colorado [STEM]
  • 2014-07-09 “The Science of New Horizons,” Northrop Grumman, Latham, Maryland [Department Seminar]
  • 2014-06-09 “My life in science research,” P. Hillyer’s 7th Grade, Matawan Aberdeen Middle School, New Jersey [Webinar, STEM]


  • 2014-04-11 Public talk on the New Horizons Mission (pre-flyby) to 250 students and general public at Aurora Community College [General Audience, STEM]
  • 2014-03-13 “New Horizons Science Payload,” Part of undergraduate class at University of Central Florida, Orlando, Florida  [STEM]
  • 2014-01-08 “Microgravity Science Applications,” Southwest Research Institute, Boulder, Colorado [Department Seminar]


  • 2013-11-21 “Value of Documentation,” Part of a Technical Writing class at University of Maryland, College Park [STEM]


  • 2012-12-02 “Lunar Volatiles Science, LCROSS, RESOLVE & Others, The story continues,” Brighton High School, Brighton, Colorado, Chemistry AP Students [STEM] 



  • 2011-02-28 ““Box of Rocks” : An experiment to study to evolution of regolith blocks in microgravity” and “Southwest Research Universal Imaging System (SWUIS) for astronomy and aeronomical observations from suborbital space vehicles,” Next Generation Suborbital Conference, Orlando, Florida [Conference Talks]


  • Presenter American Association of University Women (AAUW) and Girl Scouts of Santa Clara County sponsored “Tech Time Science Club for Girls,” a Monday evening 2-hour workshop series focusing on hands-on activities for a group of 30-40 Girl Scouts, grades 4-6. My workshops have been: 2004 & 2006 “Spectroscopy: Fingerprints of Light.” 2005 & 2007 “Infrared Light: More than Your Eyes Can See.” 2009 “Impact Crater Formation on the Moon” and 2010 “Engineering Design Practices at NASA.” [STEM]


  • 2010-09-18 International Observer the Moon Night (InOMN) in Boulder, CO; Interactive LCROSS/LRO video presentation, hands-on activities, adults and kids [STEM]
  • 2010-07-21 “LCROSS and Future Directions for Lunar Research,” Lunar Science Forum, NASA Ames Research Center, Moffett Field, California [Conference Talk]
  • 2010-02-19 “LCROSS: the lunar hitch-hiker that made an impact (literally!) on how we view our Moon and its science secrets.” NASA Speakers Bureau, Sacramento Astronomy Club, Sacramento, California [General Audience]
  • 2010-02-18 Career Day, King’s Academy, Sunnyvale, California [STEM]
  • 2010-02-10 “LCROSS Mission Results,” Southwest Research Institute, Boulder, Colorado [Department Seminar]
  • 2010-01-20 “LCROSS Mission Results,” University of California, Santa Cruz, Geology & Planetary Science Seminar Series [Department Seminar]


  • 2009-07-15 Girl Scout tour through NASA Ames Research Center, Moffett Field, California [STEM]
  • 2009-07-17 “Astronomy & Powers of Ten,” NASA Speakers Bureau Millbrae Summer School Program, Millbrae, California [STEM]
  • 2009-07-19 Moonfest volunteer, NASA Ames Research Center, Moffett Field, California [STEM]
  • 2009-07-20 Spoke to the Young Lunar Scientist group at NASA’s Lunar Science Institute Summer Program [STEM]
  • 2009-07-24 “Solar System,” Montessori school, College Ave, Palo Alto [STEM]
  • 2009-09-23 “LCROSS mission”, Luna Philosophie coffee house-style talk, San Francisco, California [General Audience]


  • 2008-12-17 “LCROSS Mission,” John Moores University, Liverpool, England [Department Seminar]
  • 2008-02-15 “LCROSS Payload”, Astronomer Workshop, NASA Ames Research Center, Moffett Field, California [Conference Talk]


  • 2007-03-15 “LCROSS Mission,” Presentation to the Italian Space Agency, NASA Ames Research Center, Moffett Field, California
  • 2007-12-18 “Infrared Astronomy Telescopes in Space,” Presentation to the Missile Defense Agency, NASA Ames Research Center, Moffett Field, California


  • 2006-06-10  “Ice Chemistry in Quiescent Dark Clouds,” SOFIA lunchtime seminar series, NASA Ames Research Center, Moffett Field, California [Department Seminar]
  • 2006-05-20 “Grism Performance for mid-IR (5-40 microns) Spectroscopy,” Ground-based and Airborne Instrumentation for Astronomy, SPIE Astronomical Telescopes & Instrumentation meeting, Orlando, Florida [Conference Talk]
  • 2006-01-20“Astrobiology and the AstroBiology Explorer,” Planets and Life Seminar Series, University of Texas at Austin [Department Seminar]


  • 2004-07-22 “Astrobiology, Astrochemistry, and the AstroBiology Explorer,” Institute of Astronomy, Cambridge, England [Department Seminar]
  • 2004-07-28 “Astrobiology, Astrochemistry, and the AstroBiology Explorer,” Astrophysics Research Institute, John Moores University, Liverpool, England [Department Seminar]


  • 2003-08-04, 2003-09-19 “A Beginner’s Guide to Infrared Astronomy,” “General Astronomy” and “What It is Like to be a NASA Scientist” 5th grade schools California & New Jersey [STEM]
  • 2003-10-21 “Astrobiology, Astrochemistry, and the AstroBiology Explorer (ABE),” NASA Ames Research Center, Moffett Field, CA [Department Seminar]


  • 2002-08-24 “Development and Testing of a 1024 x 1024 pixel Si:As IBC Detector for SOFIA-like Applications” and “Large Format Si:As IBC Array Performance for NGST and IR Space Telescope Applications”, SPIE Conference, Waikoloa, Hawaii [Conference Talks]


  • 2001-07-17 Space Camp California presenter “Playing with Cool Space Toys for Space Astronomy,” Space Camp grades 7-8, Mountain View, California [STEM]



  • 2000-03- 09 “Mid-IR Prospects for NGST” and “The Multi-band Imaging Photometer for SIRTF,” NASA Ames Research Center, Moffett Field, California [Department Seminars]


  • 1999-10-01 “An Integrated Science Instrument Module for the Next Generation Space Telescope,” University of Colorado, Boulder, Colorado [Department Seminar]
  • 1999-08-26 “An Integrated Science Instrument Module for the Next Generation Space Telescope,” NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Maryland [Department Seminar]
  • 1999-04-22 “Recipes for Building Astronomical Instruments,” US Naval Academy, Annapolis, Maryland [STEM]
  • 1999-04-20 “Conceptual Study of the NGST Science Instrument Module” NGST Technology Symposium, Woods Hole, Massachusetts [Conference Talk]
  • 1999-03-20 “OH Suppression Spectroscopy for Large Telescopes,” Steward Observatory Symposium, University of Arizona, Tucson, Arizona [Department Seminar]
  • 1999-01-06 “Near Infrared Faint Object Spectroscopy,” 193rd American Astronomical Meeting AAS Meeting, Austin, Texas, Thesis Presentation [Conference Talk]
  • Presenter on CCDs, optical telescopes, and general astronomy topics for the National Science Week, Cambridge, UK, through Cambridge University and the Association of Women in Science and Engineering (AWISE) [STEM]