Hello! Thanks for stopping by! First things first, my CV can be found here

I study sociolinguistics, specifically, how individuals interact with language to conceptualize and construct identity of both self and others. I’m especially interested in how individuals who cross traditional  racial/ethnic boundaries reflect multiple social identities through linguistic practices. Specifically, I examine the use of suprasegmental features that speakers may employ in the performance of their ethnic identities. The focus of my dissertation was intra- and interspeaker prosodic variation in the sociolinguistic behavior of American black/biracial young men. 

In April 2016, I successfully defended my dissertation entitled “Intonational Variation, Linguistic Style, and the Black/Biracial Experience”at New York University. My dissertation chair was Renee Blake, and my committee consisted of Lisa Davidson, Greg Guy, John Singler, and Erik Thomas (NCSU).  In 2016-2017, I was a Chau Mellon Postdoctoral Scholar in the Department of Linguistics and Cognitive Science at Pomona College, where I have continued my research on intonational variation and identity! Since July 2017, I have been an Assistant Professor of Linguistics in the Department of Linguistics and Cognitive Science at Pomona College. My ongoing research aims to address aspects of the question “What does it mean to sound black” from the perspectives of speakers and listeners, with a special focus on intonational and prosodic variables. In Fall 2017, I taught Phonetics, as well as Linguistic Discrimination, which was an Inside-Out Prison Exchange course with Pomona/Pitzer students and incarcerated students at the California Rehabilitation Center. In Spring 2018, I’m teaching Introduction to Linguistics and Language and Society at Pomona.

As of January 2018, I’m also the chair of the Linguistic Society of America’s (LSA) Committee for Ethnic Diversity in Linguistics (CEDL).



-In May 2018, I’ll be giving an invited talk as part of the Princeton University Linguistics Colloquium series.

-In March 2018, I give an invited colloquium talk at the Harvard Linguistics Universals workshop.

-In January 2018, Rachel Steindel Burdin (University of New Hampshire) and I gave a talk entitled “Same tune, different key: bitonal pitch accents in African American and Jewish Englishes” at the Linguistic Society of America (LSA) Annual Meeting in Salt Lake City, Utah.

-In January 2018, I was part of a panel entitled “Linguistics and Race” organized by Anne Charity Hudley (UCSB) and Christine Mallinson (UMBC) at the Linguistic Society of America (LSA) Annual Meeting in Salt Lake City, Utah.

-In November 2017, my paper with Sean Martin entitled “Vowel categories and allophonic lowering among Bolivian Quechua–Spanish bilinguals” came out in the Journal of the International Phonetic Association. Read it here.

-In November 2017, I presented two talks at New Ways of Analyzing Variation (NWAV) 46 in Madison, Wisconsin. With co-author Dan Villarreal (University of Canterbury), I gave a talk entitled “How Black Does Obama Sound Now?: Testing Listener Judgments of Intonation in Incrementally Manipulated Speech” (slides here). Additionally, my student research assistant, Wyatt Barnes, and I presented the results of a sociophonetic seminar project entitled “Wh-/u/ participates in vowel changes? Effects of Spanish/English Bilingualism on Southern California /u/-fronting”.

-In October 2017, I was interviewed about my research by Gretchen McCulloch on the Lingthusiasm podcast!

-In July 2017, I co-taught a course with Paul Reed (University of Alabama) at the Linguistic Society of America Summer Institute in Lexington, Kentucky. The course was entitled “Intonation and Social Identity”.

-In June 2017, I was an invited plenary speaker at Formal Ways of Analyzing Variation 4, the University of York, UK. Slides for that talk can be found here.

-In February 2017, I presented a talk entitled “’Put a hoodie on him, have him walk down an alley, and see how biracial he is then’: Black/Biracial men, Identity, and Linguistic Variation in Dialogues about Law Enforcement” at the 2017 Critical Mixed Race Studies Conference at the University of Southern California.

-In February 2017, I gave an invited colloquium talk at the University of California at Santa Barbara, entitled “Intonational Variation Beyond Black and White: Language and Identity in the Speech of Biracial Men”.  I also gave a workshop on teaching in the Inside-Out Prison Exchange Model called, “Linguistics in the Time of Mass Incarceration: Designing Partnerships Between Linguists, Students, and Formerly or Currently Incarcerated Individuals”.


-Standard American English (Native)

-African American Vernacular English (Native)

-Latin American Spanish (Near-native)

-Bolivian Quechua (Intermediate)

-Cairene Arabic (Beginner)


-Ph.D., Linguistics, New York University (2016). Dissertation Title: Intonational Variation, Linguistic Style, and the Black/Biracial Experience. Supervisor: Renee Blake

-M.A., Linguistics, New York University, New York, NY (2014)

-B.A., Magna Cum Laude with Honors and Research Distinction in Linguistics; Linguistics, Spanish. The Ohio State University, Columbus, Ohio (2010)


-Chau Mellon Postdoctoral Fellowship-Pomona College (2016-2017)

-New York University Global Research Initiative Fellowship at NYU Washington, D.C. (2015)

-NSF Doctoral Dissertation Research Improvement Grant (2015-2016)

-National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship (2013-2016)

-Linguistic Society of America Summer Institute Fellowship (2013)

Links to Linguists I Like

-Word. The Online Journal of African American English


-All Things Linguistic


-Language Log




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