I completed a master's degree at the Yale School of Forestry and Environment Science (FES) and my PhD at UC Berkeley's Dept. of Environmental Science, Policy and Management (ESPM), where I worked with Matteo Garbelotto and Tom Bruns. I have a fairly broad training in ecology and mycology, although my primary research focus has been community ecology. I encourage people in my lab to use a wide range of experimental approaches and technical tools, such as remote sensing, stable isotopes, gas exchange analyses and molecular genetics, to study a number of ecological topics. In my research I work across multiple spatial scales and a broad range of experimental settings, from microcosm bioassays to manipulative field experiments and try whenever possible to pair greenhouse and field studies to provide maximum scientific inference. I work primarily on plant-fungal interactions (specifically mycorrhizal symbiosis) but am open to work in other systems if the techniques & theory we use are useful.
Jenny joined the lab as a postdoc in September 2011. She completed her PhD in the Spring of 2011 at UC Irvine, where she worked with Kathleen Treseder. Jenny is a chemical ecologist interested in understanding the fine-scale mechanisms that give rise to large-scale ecosystem processes. Her research is centered on the mechanisms that structure patterns of organic matter decomposition, the role of plant-microbial mutualisms in ecosystem-level carbon and nutrient cycling and terrestrial feedbacks to global change. You can visit Jenny's personal website here
Sonya joined the lab in September 2011 as a graduate student in Plant Pathology at the U of M and is now joining the Stanford Biology Department with us. She completed her undergraduate degree in Biology & English at St. Olaf college. She has worked on a wide range of forest ecology projects in Sweden and for the USDA Forest Service. Sonya's PhD. research is trying to characterize the reciprocal feedback between mycorrhizal community struture and plant ecophysiology across a strong hydrological gradient at the Cedar Creek Ecosystem Reserve. She is collaborating with Prof. Jeannine Cavender-Bares, Jessica Savage, and Xiojing Sun at U of M who have carried out detailed ecophysiological characterization of Salix spp. at this site.
Dylan came to us in October 2011 after graduating from Lewis & Clark College. At LC he worked with Dr. Peter Kennedy studying ectomycorrhizal communities on Madrone. Dylan has been working primarily in support of the Dimensions of Biodiversity project, which means that he works on just about everything, from field sampling to next gen sequencing. Basically Dylan keeps the show going and is the all around lab Chuck Norris.
zhenyu "Amos" Lim
Zhen Yu, Lim a.k.a. Amos, is our newest Peay lab member. He joined the lab a technician in June 2012 after completing his undergraduate degree in Environmental Science at State University of New York College of Environmental Science and Forestry with a concentration in Watershed Science and minor engineering. He has assisted Dr. Ruth Yanai’s lab on the Multiple Elements Limitation in Northeastern Hardwood Ecosystem (MELNHE) studies in New Hampshire and worked with Dr. Tom Horton on fungal decomposition using Pleurotus. At Stanford will be in charge of data collection for our newest project in Malaysian Dipterocarp forest.
Alison began her PhD at Stanford in September 2010 and joined our lab in December 2012. She received a B.A. in Organismic and Evolutionary Biology at Harvard University, where she conducted her thesis research on acoustic niche partitioning. She then worked as a field assistant for a year in the Peruvian rainforest studying an ant-plant symbiosis. Alison continues to be fascinated by symbioses and her PhD work focuses on interactions between the gut flora and their host. Her dissertation takes a nutritional perspective and addresses the interplay between host nutritional ecology and gut bacterial symbioses in Neotropical butterflies. Alison is coadvised by Dr. Carol Boggs and conducts her field work at La Selva Biological Station in Costa Rica.
Natalie is a graduate student in the Micheli lab at the Hopkins Marine Station, who has been 'adopted' by the Peay lab this year. She received her undergraduate degree in marine biology from Brown University. Natalie is interested in nearshore community ecology and the interactions between human and ecological communities. She has worked on invasive species impacts in shallow subtidal communities in New England, and on the role of biodiversity in New England rocky shores and on Galápagos rocky reefs.
Joining the lab
If you are interested in working with me please send an email to <kpeay 'at' stanford.edu>. Stanford is an incredible place for ecology and biology in general. If you are interested in working with me I would encourage you to look at the Biology program to get a sense for the faculty and courses here. There are also many great faculty & resources in the School of Earth Sciences and Carnegie Department of Global Ecology & Department of Plant Biology. Applications to work with me are through the Biology department and should specify the Ecology, Evolution & Population Biology track. You can find a link to the application and program requirements for the Biology Department here.