I grew up in Nova Scotia, Canada and became interested in paleoclimatology and tree-ring science as an undergraduate at Dalhousie University where I did an undergraduate honours thesis project looking at Cretaceous fossil wood. I then moved to Saskatchewan to do my MSc degree at the University of Saskatchewan working on sub-fossil Pliocene wood from the Arctic. After deciding I really needed to know more about tree rings if I was going to continue using them for climate reconstructions I moved to Arizona to do a PhD at the Laboratory of Tree-Ring Research at the University of Arizona. I took a short break from tree rings during my postdoctoral fellowship at the University of Alaska-Anchorage where I worked on a study in Greenland looking at radiocarbon measurements of riverine carbon to determine the contribution of thawing permafrost to the carbon cycle . Prior to taking up my current position I worked as an Assistant Professor at Nipissing University in North Bay, Ontario and at the Desert Research Institute in Reno.