Candidate Statement: I am a vertebrate paleontologist and comparative anatomist with considerable experience in musculoskeletal biomechanics and craniofacial biology. Having been a AAA member since 2009, I have been inspired by our passionate scholars and educators and see our society as my home and I know I can represent our membership well if elected to the AAA Board of Directors. I have taken great pleasure in fostering activities for our members while on the Program Committee, seeing our members learn new research techniques via fellowships and awards, and meeting and mentoring a variety of people through our buddy programs and chairing sessions. I am excited at the chance to help AAA grow as it fledges into its own stand-alone meetings while striving to broaden participation and find equity amongst its diverse membership. My significant experience in programming and administration in scientific societies has helped me create spaces so that they welcome all interests including research, pedagogy and professional development as well as all people. My history of cross-cutting work with other societies gives me unique and valuable perspectives and networks to further grow our society and its meetings as we continue to promote our core fields such as comparative anatomy, vertebrate paleontology and biological anthropology among others.
As an Eagle Scout and science communicator, I have always looked towards how I can give back to my community near and far via science literacy and discovery, to foster fairness and equality, and to create new experiences for all generations. Feeding this internal charge, besides my service to AAA, I have served as Program Officer for the International Society for Vertebrate Morphology and Secretary for SICB's Division of Vertebrate Morphology. I've organized many conference symposia, hosted regional meetings, coordinated community engagements at home, and mentored a bustling lab of diverse investigators in comparative anatomy, vertebrate paleontology and evolutionary biomechanics. I train my students to be science communicators, sharing our lab and its discoveries with our local and distant communities through science fairs and virtual visits. I have used these roles and experiences to help foster relationships among societies and their members, provide opportunities to young and underprivileged students and deliver new research and pedagogical materials in the anatomical sciences. If elected, I'll carry this forward as a member of the board at AAA, promote transparency and equity and strive to further improve an already great scientific society.
Current Position/Institution: Associate Professor, Integrative Anatomy, Department of Pathology and Anatomical Sciences, University of Missouri
Ph.D. Institution: Ohio University: Ph.D. in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, 2006
Earlier Positions: Assistant Professor (2009-2015), Integrative Anatomy, Dept of Pathology and Anatomical Sciences, University of Missouri; Assistant Professor (2007-2009), Department of Pathology and Anatomy, Marshall University; Postdoctoral Fellow and Instructor of Clinical Human Anatomy, (2006-2007) Biomedical Sciences, Ohio University; Teaching Assistant, (2000-2006) Clinical Human Anatomy, Comparative Vertebrate Anatomy, Biomedical Sciences Ohio University; Fossil Preparator/Technician, Field Museum of Natural History, (1998-2000)
Teaching: Clinical Human Anatomy (Medical and Graduate Students); 3D Imaging and Computational Biology (Graduate students); Evolutionary Morphology (Graduate students); Evolutionary Biology (Graduate Students); Anatomy Teaching Practicum (Graduate students); Ethical Conduct in Research (Graduate students); Annual lectures in Veterinary Medicine (Exotics anatomy), Mechanical Engineering (Bioengineering and modeling)
AAA Committee/Roles: 2013-present: Session chair (n=5); 2013: Guest Program Officer: Comparative Anatomy Platform; 2014-2016: Short Term Visiting Scholarship Committee; 2015-present: Symposium organizer (The Scale of Imaging, Adaptive Medicine, Inside Alligators); 2017: AAA/Society of Vertebrate Paleontology Mini-Meeting organizer; 2015-2020: Program Committee member; 2018-present AAA Meetings Buddy Program; 2021-2022 Handling Editor (w/ Co-Editor Emma Schachner) Anatomical Record Special Issue: The Age of Crocodiles, In prep.
Other Professional Activities: Meeting Organization: 2019: SICB Regional Meeting, University of Missouri; Symposia organized: SVP 2018; ICVM 2016; ICVM 2013; SVP2010. Professional Service: 2018-2020: Program Officer, International Congress of Vertebrate Morphology; 2017-present: SICB Meetings buddy program mentor; 2013-2016: Secretary, Society of Integrative and Comparative Biology (SICB): Division of Vertebrate Morphology (DVM); Ad hoc grant reviewer: NSF, NIST, NERC, Leverhulme Trust; Manuscript Reviewer: Science, Nature, Anat Rec, JVP, ProcB, JEB, JMorph, IOB, etc. University and Dept Service (Select): 2019-present: Graduate admissions director; 2015-2020: Curriculum Board, University of Missouri School of Medicine; 2011-2021: Gift of Body Commemoration Committee. Mentorship and Inclusion: 2009-present: Summer Medical Anatomy Fellows Mentor; IMSD Express Mentor; Research advisor (7 PhDs, 2 MS, 23 UGs). Community: 2010-present: Inside Dinosaurs Outreach events at K-12 schools, regional museums and community organizations.
Awards: 2017: Outstanding Undergraduate Mentor Award, MU Office of Undergraduate Research; 2015: Early Career Investigator Award, American Association of Anatomists; 2011: Outstanding Instructor Teaching Excellence Award, University of Missouri School of Medicine Curriculum Board; 2006: Distinguished Osteopathic Commitment Award, OUCOM; 2003: Society of Vertebrate Paleontology Richard Estes Memorial Award
Research Interest: My lab has extensive experience in investigating the evolutionary biomechanics of vertebrates, with emphasis on comparative anatomy, paleontology, musculoskeletal biomechanics, craniofacial biology and neuroanatomy of reptiles. We employ integrative approaches including contrast imaging, histology, 3D muscle architecture, 3D modeling, and computational and engineering approaches to discover the underpinnings of major transformations in vertebrate evolution and origins of living species. Notably, we have explored the biomechanical and developmental origins of cranial kinesis, the ontogeny and evolution of feeding mechanics in crocodilians, patterns of craniofacial evolution in dinosaurs, and epiphyseal biology of cranial and appendicular joints.
Other Professional Memberships Currently Maintained: Society for Integrative and Comparative Biology (2000-present); Society of Vertebrate Paleontology: (2000-present); International Society for Vertebrate Morphology (2001-present); American Association for the Advancement of Science (2015-present)
Lab webpage: https://hollidaylab.com/