Hillary is a climate scientist who specializes in the South American Tropics. In 2004, she graduated from Wellesley College with a B.A. in Geology. She spent the next few years in graduate school traversing the Amazon basin, learning to wield a 6-foot chainsaw, speak Spanish to native Peruvians, and turn trees into recorders of ancient climate history. In the fall of 2009, she received her Ph.D. in Paleoclimatology from Duke University.
Hillary's passion for teaching began when she was an undergraduate and blossomed during her years of graduate school. She has served as a science educator at the New Mexico Museum of Natural History & Science and has taught labs and courses in Duke's Earth & Ocean Sciences department for 5 years. Hillary has taught a variety of earth science topics from mineralogy to biogeochemistry to paleoclimate. In 2010, Hillary joined Harvard's department of Earth & Planetary Sciences as Preceptor.