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Professor & Director of Chrysler Herbarium

Dept. of Ecology, Evolution, and Natural Resources & Dept. of Plant Biology and Pathology

Rutgers, State University of New Jersey                   Phone:  (848) 932-6343

237 Foran Hall                                                           Fax:      (732) 932-9441

59 Dudley Road                                                         E-mail:

New Brunswick, NJ 08901, USA                               www:


Positions Held

2018-present   Coordinator, Scarlet Pimpernel Project, Rutgers.

2018-present   Faculty Director, Rutgers Gardens, Rutgers.

2017-present   Professor, Dept. of Ecology, Evolution, and Natural Resources (DEENR, primary) and Dept. of Plant Biology (DPB, secondary), Rutgers [joint appointment]

2007-2017       Associate Professor, DEENR and Dept. of Plant Biology and Pathology (DPBP), Rutgers

2004-present   Director, Chrysler Herbarium, Rutgers

2001-2004       Correspondent, Chrysler Herbarium, Rutgers

2001-2007       Assistant Professor, DEENR & DPBP, Rutgers

1998-2001       Research Associate (postdoc), The Lewis B. and Dorothy Cullman Program for Molecular Systematics Studies, The New York Botanical Garden, Bronx, NY

1995-1998       Laboratory Manager, The New York Botanical Garden, Bronx, NY

1991-1995       Teaching and Computer Assistant, Dept. of Systematic Botany, Uppsala University, Uppsala, Sweden

1989-1990       Museum Assistant, Regnellian Herbarium, Dept. of Phanerogamic Botany, Swedish Museum of Natural History, Stockholm, Sweden



1999    Ph.D. (‘Filosofie doktorsexamen’) in Systematic Botany, Stockholm University. Thesis: Morphological and molecular phylogenetic studies in neotropical Gentianaceae. Stockholm University, Stockholm, Sweden. 221 pp. [published thesis]

1991    B.Sc. (‘Filosofie kandidatexamen’) in Biology and Earth Sciences, Stockholm University, Sweden.

Research interests

Evolutionary history, biodiversity, and biogeography of angiosperms, especially gentians (Gentianaceae) and relatives in Gentianales; tropical historical biogeography and its relationship to ecological niche evolution; European and American flora and its indigenous and non-native components, focused largely on weeds and urban plants; contemporary ethnobotany (especially medicinal and edible plants, evolution of food, cooking and crops, and opinions and uses of weeds); conservation and education of plant biodiversity on local to global scales.


Mission statement

I use field and lab-based biological and ethnobotanical research methods to study wild and cultivated plants. My research focuses on their evolution and interactions with humans in natural areas, cities, and our homes and classrooms. The purpose of this research is to understand the intersection of biodiversity, education, and human communication in contemporary society, improve botanical accuracy and literacy, and provide enhanced plant diversity knowledge worldwide.