I’m a cognitive neuroscientist with 15+ years of experience. I received my Bachelor's of Science (Neuroscience) from the University of California, San Diego and my PhD in Neuroscience from the University of Southern California (Go Trojans!). Aside from being intrigued by how the brain works and why humans behave the way they do, I’m also interested in exploring how science intersects with other fields.
The first shape that exploration took was a post-doc fellowship at Vanderbilt University in The MacArthur Foundation’s Law and Neuroscience Project. We investigated how neural correlates of mind states are related to criminal behavior, judicial decision-making, and legal classifications. I was interested in whether and how technological advancements in neuroscience would affect legal systems.
Then, craving to see the translation of science into something practical for society, I got interested in business. I got involved with a healthcare tech startup that taught me how the skills we learn from conducting research can be used to run a business. I was hooked.
So like any good academic, I decided to do a ton of research and learn everything I could about startups, venture capital, and commercializing technology. To do this, I joined the UCLA Venture Capital Fund, and the UCLA Office of Intellectual Property. There, I used my collaborative, quantitative, and problem solving skills from my PhD to run operations, as well as help advise UCLA startups.
From there, I became Director of Research & Operations at the USC Center for Body Computing, an academic digital health research and innovation center from the USC Keck School of Medicine. I managed research projects and collaborations with digital health companies, health systems, care providers, payers, sports teams and leagues, and US Military divisions. Through this work, I have designed and managed multi-site research studies investigating the relationship between health outcomes and technology, including wearable devices and mobile apps. This work has exponentially deepened my interest in the issues surrounding the adoption of digital tools, such as the ethics of data collection and use, privacy, and cybersecurity.
Then… everything lost all meaning. After succumbing to the depths of despair during an existential crisis, I climbed out of the grave I had dug for my hope, wiped my hands clean of the dirt of depression, and started on my way to uncover the answers to the ineffable mysteries of the universe that I had encountered in the darkness. I tell this tale in my book, Proof of Spiritual Phenomena: A Neuroscientist's Discovery of the Ineffable Mysteries of the Universe, where I pull the lynch pin of consciousness and find myself at the crossroads of science and spirituality.
I want to live in a world where kindness is king – where humans can reclaim the word humanity and deserve it. My heart longs for a world where humans see themselves as part of a vast, interconnected network that includes nature (not as separate from it). I believe the lack of resources and treatments for mental health and trauma are a greatly ignored tragedy. Let's create a world where we don't have to strive for justice and equality – where it already is just and equal. I want to see the doors of perception blown wide open.
When I’m not working, you can find me obsessing over the latest true crime story, lost in a book, seeking the universe's secrets, or hiking in the Santa Monica Mountains. And eating gummy bears because gummy bears are delicious.