Dr. Kathleen G. O’Malley
Associate Professor, State Fisheries Geneticist

Dr. Kathleen O’Malley is a fisheries geneticist who uses both genetic and genomic approaches to address questions related to the ecological and population genetics of freshwater, anadromous, and marine fishes.  She has focused her efforts on and achieved success in utilizing advances from basic science to inform on the drivers that underlie both neutral and adaptive genetic diversity within and among populations.  The information generated has been used to help develop effective management and conservation strategies for freshwater and marine fish/fisheries and their environments.  Dr. O’Malley is originally from Valley Forge, Pennsylvania and earned a B.S. in biological science from Florida State University, a M.S. in Zoology from the University of Guelph, and a Ph.D. in Fisheries from Oregon State University.  She completed her postdoctoral research at NOAA’s Northwest Fisheries Science Center in Seattle, Washington.  In her spare time, she enjoys running, whitewater kayaking, snowboarding, backpacking, and bow hunting.


Sandra Bohn, M.S.
Faculty Research Assistant

Sandra Bohn came to the O’Malley lab from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, where she studied conservation genetics of freshwater fishes. Sandra earned her B.A. at New College of Florida and her M.S. in Biological Sciences at the University of Southern Mississippi studying population genetics and hybridization of alligator gar (Atractosteus spatula). After graduating, she worked in the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Conservation Genetics Laboratory in Warm Springs, GA, as a contractor with Auburn University before accepting a position with the service’s Molecular Ecology Laboratory in Dexter, NM. Her primary research interests are population genetics of threatened or endangered aquatic and marine species and she enjoys exploring how new technologies and analytical techniques can help us better manage marine and aquatic species. Sandra is originally from Dayton, OH, and explores the Oregon coast and crafts in her free time.


Dr. Felix Vaux
Postdoctoral Research Associate

Dr. Felix Vaux is an evolutionary biologist, interested in biological diversity, speciation and the process of evolution. So far, his research has involved population genetics, phylogenetics, paleontology and geometric morphometrics. He is currently researching the population genomics and stock boundaries of North Pacific Albacore (Thunnus alalunga). In 2017, he completed his Ph.D. in evolutionary biology at Massey University in New Zealand, investigating evolutionary lineages and the molecular and morphological diversity of endemic marine snails. In 2013, he graduated with a B.Sc. Hons. in evolutionary biology from the University of Exeter in the UK, including study abroad at the University of Southern Mississippi. He enjoys fieldwork and has been fortunate to assist with various research projects involving plants, insects, mammals and birds. Felix grew up in rural Oxfordshire in the UK and enjoys hiking, gardening and travel.


Vickie Zeller
Research Technician

Vickie graduated in 2018 with a B.S. in Fisheries and Wildlife Sciences with a specialization in genetics from Oregon State University. Vickie first got involved with genetics through their work in OSU’s Botany and Plant Pathology Clinic diagnosing plants through genomic means. Through their sparked interest from the Plant Pathology lab, Vickie continued their work in Clint Epps Wildlife Population Genetics lab at OSU. Vickie hopes to continue their career path into conservation genetics through a couple of years of work and then potentially graduate school. In Vickie’s spare time they enjoy playing soccer and snowboarding.


Elizabeth M. Lee
M.S. Student

Elizabeth Lee is studying the genomic diversity among Dungeness crab megalopae recruits along the Oregon coast. She grew up on the Rhode Island coast, where she developed an interest in marine systems. In 2013, she completed a Bachelor’s degree in Biology studying molecular and ecological systems along the shores of the Chesapeake Bay at St. Mary’s College of Maryland. After graduation, she completed a postbaccalaureate program in bioinformatics at the National Human Genome Research Institute in Bethesda, Maryland. She then conducted fisheries monitoring for the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife before beginning a master’s program in fisheries genomics at OSU. As a graduate student in the State Fisheries Genetics Lab, she is using genomics approaches to better understand Oregon’s most valuable fishery, Dungeness crab. In addition to learning about the Oregon coast, she enjoys hiking and backpacking.


Stanley Piotrowski
M.S. Student

Stan Piotrowski developed his love for the marine environment growing up fishing and crabbing along the coast of New Jersey and later earned his B.S. in Marine Sciences from Rutgers University in 2015.  While completing his undergraduate studies, he participated in a Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) program studying coral recruitment at the Central Caribbean Marine Institute in the Cayman Islands and cultivated an interest in using molecular methods in ecology at Rutgers’ Insect Phylogenetic Laboratory.  Broadly, Stan is interested in utilizing genomic approaches to ensure the long-term health and sustainability of marine, freshwater, and anadromous species and the coastal communities that depend on them.  In the O’Malley Lab, he will be studying the fitness differences between hatchery-reared and natural-origin salmon and steelhead (Oncorhynchus mykiss) using genetic techniques.  In his spare time, Stan enjoys traveling, scuba diving, snowboarding, and camping.

Former Postdoctoral Research Associates

Dr. Melissa Evans

Dr. Andrew Black

Former Graduate Students

Amelia Whitcomb, M.S.

Tyler M. Jackson, M.S.

Former Undergraduate Students

Brynn Perales

Samuel Shry

Meaghan Clark

Savannah Clapp