Meet the Program Directors

Cynthia K. Damer, Ph.D.

Professor, Department of Biology

Cynthia earned her bachelor's degree in neuroscience from Oberlin College. She went on to graduate school at the University of Virginia where she earned her Ph.D. in neuroscience working in the lab of Dr. Carl Creutz. Her dissertation research was on the biochemical characterization of the synaptic vesicle protein, synaptotagmin.

Next, Cynthia took a visiting assistant professor position at Whitman College for one year before beginning her postdoctoral work with Dr. Theresa O'Halloran at Duke University. As a postdoc, Cynthia studied clathrin function in Dictyostelium. After her postdoc, she was an assistant professor in the Biology Department at Vassar College where she began studying the function of a family of proteins called copines using Dictyostelium.

She is currently a professor in the Biology Department at Central Michigan University. Cynthia teaches classes in introductory biology, biotechnology, and cell biology. Over the past ten years, she has worked with over thirty undergraduates in her research lab.

Anna K. Monfils, Ph.D.

Associate Professor, Department of Biology
Director, Central Michigan University Herbarium

Anna earned her bachelor's degree in Biology from the University of Notre Dame. She went on to pursue a graduate degree at Michigan State University (MSU) where she received a dual Ph.D. in Plant Biology and Ecology Evolutionary Biology and Behaviour. Anna's graduate research was in the field of plant systematics and evolution. Anna went on to do post-doctoral research in the lab of Dr Rich Triemer at MSU studying algal evolution.

Anna came to Central Michigan University in the fall of 2005. She teaches courses in quantitative biology, plant biology, plant systematics, wetland plants and scanning electron microscopy. Anna also directs the CMU Herbarium, a biodiversity collection of over 26,000 preserved plant specimens archived in Brooks Hall. Since coming to CMU, Anna has mentored over 20 undergraduate students in her research lab.