Research Interests

Wine Chemistry and Contaminants

  The northwestern PA region is home to many wine makers. As a chemist, I am interested in working with these wineries to test samples and improve the quality of the local wine varieties. My students have varied interests, which has led me to work on multiple different types of projects focused on wine research.

Biochemistry of Wine Contaminants

  My formal training at UNC-Chapel Hill was in the field of protein chemistry and structural biology. Solving the 3-D structures of biological molecules provides a detailed view of the atomic level interactions. Currently, I am working on cloning, expressing and crystallizing two yeast proteins responsible for wine spoilage.

Wine Analysis

  Working with independent-study and senior research students, I am building a wine analysis center at Westminster. This will eventually become a facility for working with local wine-makers to aid in analysis. While some of the tests can be done rather simply, we are also developing more extensive tests using GC-MS methods.

Green Chemistry

  As I educate future chemists of the world, it is my responsibilty to teach Green Chemistry principles. I am interested in implementing "greener" laboratory experiments throughout the undergraduate chemistry curriculum. Collaborating with students and colleagues, I will work toward reducing the waste stream and energy usage at Westminster College.