I was born and raised in the Hattiesburg, Mississippi area. Early in high school I developed an interest scientific research, completing a study on the impact of insulin pump therapy on academic achievement for students with juvenile diabetes. I was selected to present the results of this study at the National Science Fair in San Diego, California.

I attended both the University of Southern Mississippi (USM) and Mississippi State University (MSU) before graduating summa cum laude with my B.S. in Mathematics and a minor in Chemistry from USM. During my undergraduate experience, I worked on projects spanning from the social sciences to computational chemistry, earning second authorship status on two academic journal articles.  While participating in these projects, I developed an interest in computational science and simulation.  Under the direction of Dr. Haiyan Tian, I completed my undergraduate thesis “Meshless Method with Regularization for Non‐Homogenous Cauchy Problems of Elliptic Operators,” which focused on solving partial differential equations (PDEs) with ill-posed, or noisy, boundaries.

I entered the Applied and Computational Mathematics program at Florida State University (FSU) immediately following my graduation from USM. Through my master’s program, I worked with Dr. Kyle Gallivan on large-scale matrix factorization and numerical linear algebra. This research culminated in my master’s project, “The Inexact Graph Matching Problem Two Spectral Methods for Constructing Correspondences Between Vertex Sets of Graphs.”

Immediately following the completion of my master’s degree in 2011, I began working as a technical consultant in professional services at Aderant Holdings, Inc., a legal software company. Through this role, I travelled to dozens of large law firms across North America and Europe, helping clients implement and customize large, distributed financial software. In 2014, I moved to Aderant’s software development team as a software engineer working on the Expert Time and Collections products. Through this role I became familiar with web service and database architecture and became interested in not only the practice of software, but also the many challenges faced by practitioners.

This interest in Software Engineering ultimately led me to enter the FSU Computer Science Ph.D. program in 2013.  In 2014 I began working with Dr. Sonia Haiduc on code search and query optimization for use in simplifying the process of concept location. Today, I maintain a full-time engineering position with the Florida Department of Education as a technical team lead for the Bureau of Exceptional Education and Student Services (BEESS) while also working in the Serene Lab completing my dissertation research on machine learning applications for improving traceability link recovery. I live in Tallahassee, FL with my wife (Samantha), son (Cassian), and dog (Eevee).

From left to right: Hattiesburg Train Station (photo credit), my family, and the FSU Unconquered Statue (photo credit).
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