I graduated from Mesa State College in Colorado in 2007 and started at the University of Arizona in 2010 studying the mechanisms of metalloenzymes, nitrile hydratase and nitrile synthetase. I was fortunate to join Vahe Bandarian’s lab when Reid McCarty was still a student there. Reid taught me how to purify and characterize proteins. He was extremely productive, and his style was fascinating – it was basically chaos until everything somehow came together into a beautiful result. It was a great opportunity to be able to work with Reid, and I am very grateful to receive this award made in his honor.