Dr. Elsa Kirsten Peters
Dr. Elsa Kirsten Peters holds an unwavering belief that science is fun, and dreams that everyone would come to share her enthusiastic perspective—even those who typically avoid such topics. With that in mind, in 2004 she set out to decipher complex research for a general audience, and the Rock Doc column was born. At first it ran in just one newspaper, but readers embraced her timely themes, straightforward explanations, and humor. Today, her essays are available twice per month to more than 200 newspapers nationwide.
In order to write intelligently on scientific matters related to physics, chemistry, biology, and more, Dr. Peters often rises at 5:00 a.m.—coffee cup in hand and faithful canine companion at her feet— to spend chilly, damp eastern Washington mornings poring over journal articles. Now she has compiled several new entries, along with her favorites from four years of columns, into “Planet Rock Doc.”
Dr. Peters’ passion is accompanied by formidable credentials. A native of rural Washington State, she graduated summa cum laude with a degree in geology from Princeton University in 1984. She earned her doctorate from the Earth and Planetary Sciences Department at Harvard University in 1990, followed by ten years at Washington State University, where she taught undergraduate-level geology and interdisciplinary science classes. She also worked as the Director of the Office of Major Grant Development for the institution’s Agricultural Research Center, and happily, her role there offered abundant opportunities to connect with scientists involved in unique, exciting research in a variety of disciplines.
She is a nationally syndicated newspaper columnist.
Two non-traditional geology textbooks
Contributor to Essentials of Geology
Four fictional murder mysteries (under a pen name)
Journal of College Science Teaching
Journal of Geological Education
Geochemica et Cosmochimica Acta
The Journal of Economic Geology
The Geological Society of America
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