When I was in sixth grade, my science teacher didn’t know how the greenhouse effect worked, so I volunteered to come to the front of the class and explain it. From then on I was hooked. I love the challenge inherent in explaining complex scientific ideas in a way that your audience can understand and learn. I always come back to what Kurt Vonnegut wrote in my favorite novel, Cat’s Cradle: “Dr. Hoenikker used to say that any scientist who couldn’t explain to an eight-year-old what he was doing was a charlatan.” I haven’t had the opportunity to try to explain epigentics to an eight-year-old, but I hope I would pass the test! I am inspired by great explainers of science and nature, particularly Isaac Asimov, Aldo Leopold, Bernd Heinrich, David Attenborough, and Jared Diamond.


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