Molly graduated with honors from California State University Chico with a B.S. in biological science. Prior to joining the Hopkins Lab, Molly spent most of her time working with the Yosemite toad (Anaxyrus canorus) in Yosemite National Park and with the desert tortoise (Gopherus agassizii) in the Mojave Desert. As an National Park Service employee, Molly collaborated with USGS and SNRI (Sierra Nevada Research Institute) researchers on a four-year project investigating the effects of meadow composition, stock use, and climate change on the declining Yosemite toad. In the winter, when Molly wasn’t in Yosemite, she worked with desert tortoises conducting surveys to both relocate (primarily for construction activities) and to determine the success of tortoise relocations.
In June 2013, Molly started a Masters program in the Hopkins Lab. For her thesis, she studied snapping turtles to investigate how agricultural land use and mercury pollution affect turtle embryonic development and offspring phenotype. Her research interests include: maternal effects, environmental toxicology, physiology of amphibians and reptiles, and conservation biology.
In the future, Molly plans to continue her work in herpetological conservation. She recently accepted a full-time job as a Wildlife Biologist at Yosemite National Park.