I am a quantitative social scientist, getting my PhD from the Linguistics department at the University of Pennsylvania.

My dissertation research is on regional variation in African American English. I’m trying to answer: what are the dialect regions? How do they relate to the Great Migration? How are they different from White dialect regions? How are these patterns related to segregation?

My other research interests are eclectic and interdisciplinary: I am primarily interested in language change and variation, especially as relates to spatial patterns, but it's hard to find a topic in linguistics I'm not interested in. My research interests include Game Theoretic approaches to Pragmatics (specifically, implicature, 'dog whistle,'  euphemism, and microaggression), Evolutionary Game Theoretic approaches to modeling language change and variation, social stratification in language, various topics in African American Vernacular English, tonal phenomena in Mandarin, and Bantu Morphosyntax. Much of my recent research has been sociophonetics, or language change from the interplay of various interfaces (e.g., phonological reanalysis feeding syntactic reanalysis).

My advisors are Robin Clark and William Labov, and my committee members are Mark Liberman, Jack Grieve, and Hiram Smith.


I came to linguistics late. I spent the last 10 years as a struggling jazz musician (what jazz musician isn't?) and more recently as a research assistant and facilitator for a Diversity & Inclusion consulting firm that specializes in high performance through effective management of diverse workforces -- with a significant number of government and military clients.

I am an army brat who grew up moving every two years, and who spent a lot of formative time in AAE speech communities; I speak some slightly southern version of 'General American' and AAE natively, and am fluent in French. I also speak Mandarin, and a decent amount of Spanish, Dutch, and a smattering of other languages. My undergraduate degree is a Specialist degree in East Asian Studies (specifically, China studies) from University of Toronto, cum laude.