Former Lab Members

Kelson Adcock

Kelson Adcock

Former Lab Technician
kelson.adcock@hci.utah.edu

Kelson recently moved to Salt Lake City from Cambridge MA, where he recieved his undergraduate degree in Molecular and Cellular Biology from Harvard University. In September of 2019, he joined the Holmen lab as a lab technician to learn more about cancer research with a special interest in glioma. He hopes to continue his education in medical school and contribute to research and patient care. In his free time he enjoys spending time with his wife, skiing, and biking. Massachusetts

Stephanie Angel

Stephanie Angel

Former Senior Lab Specialist

Stephanie joined the Holmen lab in December 2015. She received her Bachelor of Science in Biology from the University of Texas at San Antonio, and has years of experience working with animals in field research, zoological, and laboratory settings. Stephanie calls San Antonio, TX her home, but is excited to pursue her outdoor hobbies in the beautiful state of Utah, which include birding, herping, hiking, and running. She is currently working at ARUP laboratories.

Rowan Arave

Rowan Arave

Former Undergraduate Student

Rowan was an undergraduate student at the University of Utah pursuing an honors degree in Biological Chemistry. She began working in the Holmen Laboratory in August of 2012 researching prevalent oncogenes in melanoma. Previously, she has worked on neurobiological research in the Birman lab at ESPCI ParisTech in Paris, France.

Ryan Boekholder

Ryan Boekholder

Former Undergraduate Student
ryan.boekholder@hci.utah.edu

Ryan is an undergraduate Biomedical Engineering Student at the University of Utah. He decided to join the Holmen lab in August of 2017 in order to learn more about the world of modern research and the innovative cancer research techniques currently being employed. He is currently working as a research assistant for a project studying the causes and effects of mutant IDH in gliomagenesis. Ryan is originally from Vancouver, WA and enjoys to swim and ski in his free time.

Joseph Cho

Joseph Cho

Former MD/PhD Student

Having lived in Salt Lake City for the past 6 years, Joe proudly claims it as his home. He is originally from the East Coast and completed undergraduate studies at the University of Virginia. When he grows up, Joe hopes to pursue clinical research as a medical oncologist. His current interests range from spirituality to co-op living to road biking. Joe is currently a resident in Pathology at the University of Chicago.

Nicholas Duke

Nicholas Duke

Former Undergraduate Student

Nic is from Utah and enjoys classical music. He is majoring in psychology with a minor in chemistry. He loves chemistry, anatomy, and physiology. This love has stemmed from working in hospitals in a medical setting for over three years. During this time and experience he has participated in patient care, holding different positions that involve surgery, endoscopy, and ophthalmology. He loves to hike, catch bugs, and animals. He is grateful for the opportunity to work in the Holmen Lab and assist in research to benefit the lives of patients battling various melanoma and glioblastoma. Nic is currently attending Midwestern University in Glendale, Arizona studying podiatry.

Christian Flynn

Christian Flynn

Former Undergraduate Student

Christian is an undergraduate at the University of Utah double majoring in Molecular Biology and Neuro-Psychology, with minors in Chemistry, Human Evolution, and Cognitive Science. He is a trained dental assistant, chemical laboratory technician, and CNA. He is preparing for medical school and aspires to become a neurosurgeon. He is interested in the ontological study of Glioblastoma. He hopes his research experience in the Holmen lab will prepare him for his own future research projects as well as a rewarding career in medicine, oncology, and neuroscience. In his free time, he loves to hike and travel with his wife and puppy, as well as snowboard, rock climb, and waterski.

Russell Green

Russell Green

Former Graduate Student

Russell is a Virginia native and graduated from James Madison University in Harrisonburg, VA in 2013 with a degree in biotechnology. After moving to Utah to begin his PhD training, he joined the Holmen lab to pursue his interest in cancer biology. His main research interests is connecting basic biological processes and how they are involved in human health and disease. Outside of lab he can be found mountain biking, skiing, camping and enjoying Utah’s outdoor offerings. Russell currently works at BioFire in Salt Lake City.

Matthew Guthrie

Matthew Guthrie

Former Undergraduate Student

Matt was an undergraduate student at the University of Utah studying Biology and French. He joined the Holmen lab in May 2012 working on characterizing the role of mutant IDH in glioma. Matt currently works at Recursion Pharmaceuticals in Salt Lake City. 

Stephanie Hardy

Stephanie Hardy

Former Lab Assistant

Stephanie graduated from Utah State University with a Bachelor’s of Science in Animal Science and a minor in Chemistry. She has many years of experience working with animals in clinical as well as laboratory settings. She is a certified Laboratory Animal Technician through the American Association of Laboratory Animal Science. In her spare time she enjoys competing in rodeo in events such as team roping, barrel racing and breakaway. She also enjoys hiking with her dog, snowboarding, wakeboarding and riding her Harley motorcycle.

Chelsea Joliet

Chelsea Joliet

Former Administrative Assistant

Chelsea joined HCI’s Research Administration in September 2017. She is originally from Louisville, Kentucky but has lived in Salt Lake City since 2011. She received her Bachelor’s degree from Westminster College and attended the University of Utah for a Masters in International Affairs and Global Enterprise.  She enjoys reading, Lord of the Rings marathons, going to Krav Maga, and cooking.

Gabrielle Legaspi

Gabrielle Legaspi

Former Graduate Student
gabrielle.legaspi@hci.utah.edu

Gabrielle came to the University of Utah as an undergraduate student in 2016 and received her BS in Math in 2019. She is currently a master’s student in the statistics program within the Department of Mathematics. Her career and study interests are all fields where she can apply math to real-world problems. She is very excited to utilize her math skills to contribute to cancer research. Originally from Hawaii, Gabrielle loves the ocean and spending time at the beach.

Lindsey Lloyd

Lindsey Lloyd

Former Undergraduate Student

Lindsey graduated from Hillcrest High School with honors in 2011. She studies Exercise Sport Science at the University of Utah with a career ambition to be a physical therapist, pharmacist, or dermatologist. In 2013, Lindsey was crowned Miss Sandy. Her platform is Education for the Eradication of Preventable Skin Cancer.

Darren Lynn

Darren Lynn

Former Lab Assistant

Darren is a graduate of Brigham Young University where he majored in biology and researched novel drug compounds that could be used to therapeutically treat various cancers. At HCI he researched the effect of different drug combinations to treat patients with late stage melanoma. He started medical school in the fall of 2014. Darren is married and in his spare time he enjoys playing the piano, tennis, and reading.

Yolancee Nguyen

Yolancee Nguyen

Former Undergraduate Student

Yolancee was an Honors College student majoring in Biology with an emphasis in Biological Chemistry and minoring in Chemistry. She earned an Associate’s Degree from Salt Lake Community College in General Studies and have gotten certified as a Surgical Technologist during her high school years. She plans to go to medical school and aspires to become a surgeon—specifically cardiothoracic or reconstructive surgery. She has a high interest in oncological studies and is glad to be a part of the Holmen Lab which allows her to further her interest in melanoma. She hopes to complete her senior thesis on the pathways that aid in the growth of metastatic melanoma and take that knowledge into her future studies of medicine. If she is not working at the Huntsman Cancer Hospital as a Surgical Technologist, working at the Holmen Lab, going to school, or volunteering, she enjoys hiking and traveling. She has a high wanderlust level and enjoys exploring new cultures and new surroundings. She also has a passion to bake and cook and plans to go to cooking in school in Italy before starting medical school.

Beatrice Philip, PhD

Beatrice Philip, PhD

Former Postdoctoral Fellow

Beatrice hails from Bangalore, India. After completing her master’s degree in Biotechnology, she moved to Australia to pursue her PhD. During her doctoral studies, she investigated the molecular mechanisms underlying hypoxia signaling in neural crest derived tumors. Following the completion of her PhD in Dec 2014, she joined the Holmen Lab as a postdoctoral fellow. Her current research focuses on studying the role of IDH mutation in gliomagenesis, progression and therapeutic response. Beatrice is also interested in understanding the effect of 2-HG on HIF regulation in gliomas. Besides research, she enjoys travelling, music, reading, and cooking. Beatrice is currently a Postdoctoral Fellow at the Institut Curie Research Center, Orsay, France.

Gabi Piril

Gabi Piril

Former Lab Technician
gabi.piril@hci.utah.edu

Gabi joined the Holmen lab June 2019, to continue her career in science.  She is our mouse tech, a general lab tech, and our catch all helper to make sure the lab keeps running smoothly. Gabi is originally from Portland Oregon and likes voodoo doughnuts just as much as everyone else.

Gemma Robinson, PhD

Gemma Robinson, PhD

Former Postdoctoral Fellow

Gemma is from Manchester, England. She joined the Holmen laboratory in early 2012 as a postdoctoral fellow having completed her PhD thesis, entitled “The identification and characterization of novel proteins and metabolic signaling pathways that regulate TRAIL-induced apoptosis”, in late 2011. Her current research interests lie in the development of pre-clinical brain tumor mouse models to characterize genes involved in the initiation, progression and/or maintenance of gliomas. Gemma is also interested in developing her teaching skills with the goal of developing online courses for distance learning in the STEM disciplines. In her spare time, Gemma enjoys skiing and hiking. She is currently a Senior Lecturer at the University of Stirling, Stirling, UK.

James Robinson, PhD

James Robinson, PhD

Former Research Associate

James is from Derbyshire, England. He joined the Holmen laboratory in 2008 having completed his Ph.D. at the University of London. James helped develop our mouse model of melanoma and validate the roles of BRAF and MEK singling in glioma. He is a recent recipient of a National Cancer Institute Pathway to Independence Award to study the role of tumor microenvironment interactions in colon cancer.  His long-term goal is to develop a systematic approach for the identification and validation of stromal signaling pathways responsible for the promotion, maintenance, metastasis, and chemoresistance of cancer. His other interests include hiking, climbing, history and philosophy. James is currently an Assistant Professor at the Hormel Institute in Austin, MN.

Jaclyn Shahan

Jaclyn Shahan

Former Undergraduate Student

Jaclyn graduated from the University of Utah with a degree in Exercise and Sports Science. She has a deep passion for physiology and biology and is interested in studying patients with a family history of melanoma. Jaclyn plans to become a Physician Assistant specializing in dermatology.

Clifford Shin

Clifford Shin

Former MD/PhD Student

Clifford joined the Holmen Lab in fall of 2013 as an MD/PhD student. He aspires to become a physician scientist in the field of neurology/oncology. Clifford calls Los Angeles home and received a degree in Neuroscience and Molecular Biology from Columbia University as a John Jay Scholar. His interests include gastronomy and fine art. Clifford is currently a resident in Radiology at Yale University.

Mark Silvis, PhD

Mark Silvis, PhD

Former Research Associate

Originally from Pennsylvania, Mark completed his PhD at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine in 2009.  Prior to joining the Holmen lab  in early 2016 as a postdoctoral research associate, he did his postdoctoral training in the lab of Valeri Vasioukhin at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center where he studied the signaling mechanisms involved in cutaneous squamous cell carcinoma formation.  His current research focuses on understanding the mechanisms of melanoma formation and metastasis.  In his free time Mark likes to ski, backpack, hike, rock climb, and cook. Mark is currently a Research Scientist working with Dr. Conan Kinsey at the University of Utah.

Danika Sommer

Danika Sommer

Former Undergraduate Student

Danika (duhneekuh) was an undergraduate student at the University of Utah pursuing a degree in Cell and Molecular Biology and a minor in chemistry. She worked as a medical assistant through college but her true interests lie in medical research, which the Holmen Lab has gratefully sparked her curiosity for. She plans to apply to a graduate program, specifically in biochemistry/immunology so that she can be immersed in an educational environment and contribute to science along the way working in a lab. In her spare time, Danika loves to hang out with friends/family and travel to new places.

Sean Strain

Sean Strain

Former Undergraduate Student

Sean was an undergraduate student studying chemistry with a biology emphasis at the University of Utah. Sean is from Eagle, Idaho and enjoys bouldering and reading in his spare time. He is currently employed at BioFire in Salt Lake City.

Kirby Trombetti

Kirby Trombetti

Former Undergraduate Student

Originally from southern Utah, Kirby moved to Salt Lake City in 2012 to attend the University of Utah where he studied sociology. Although he has an unconventional major from a laboratory standpoint, Kirby plans to continue his education by applying to medical school. In his spare time he enjoys sports, spending time with his friends and family, and basically anything outdoors.

Joycelyn Tross

Joycelyn Tross

Former Lab Technician 

Joycelyn is from Virginia Beach, VA. She graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Biology from Shenandoah University in Winchester, VA. She is the youngest of three, with one older brother and sister. Prior to working at the HCI, she worked in an infectious disease research lab with a focus on HCV. Joycelyn relocated to Utah in 2012, with her husband, and joined Dr. Holmen's lab in May of the same year.  She enjoys gardening and loves animals, especially her cats! She enjoys playing field hockey and lacrosse, and training for and competing in triathlons and various running events. She volunteers with the youth group at her church and is involved in the community. She is a member of the Desert Sharks Triathlon team and is the coordinator for the Tiger Sharks Junior Triathlon Team in Utah. Jocelyn currently works in the Department of Dermatology at the University of Utah.

Jon Gary Urry

Jon Gary Urry

Former undergraduate student

Jon comes from the small town of Oakley, Utah, and has lived in Utah for most of his life, but he has also called Idaho, Maine, and Vermont home. Jon is an outdoor enthusiast and loves spending time with family and friends. He thoroughly enjoys living in Utah with its many opportunities for year-round recreation in the nearby mountains (and with so many Mexican Restaurants close to home). He is also a soccer and basketball fan and can often be found relaxing by watching Jazz games with his family, or soccer games with friends. 

Mikey Vetter

Mikey Vetter

Former Undergraduate Student
michael.vetter@hci.utah.edu

Mikey is an undergraduate Biomedical Engineering Student at the University of Utah. He joined the Holmen lab in August of 2018 to pursue a thesis in melanoma research. He is currently working as a research assistant for a project studying small molecule inhibitors for the treatment of melanoma metastasis. Mikey grew up in Salt Lake City and enjoys to cycle, hike, and ski in his free time.

Hannah Wilson

Hannah Wilson

Former Undergraduate Student
hannah.wilson@hci.utah.edu

Hannah is an undergraduate student who just graduated from Hillcrest High School in Sandy, Utah. She now attends the University of Utah as a chemistry major with an emphasis in biology. She would like to earn a medical degree in order to work in clinical care with children. Hannah loves being outside and in the mountains. She also enjoys being active and traveling to various destinations with her family and friends.

Tara Winter

Tara Winter

Former Undergraduate Student

She received her Associate's Degree from Southern Utah University in 2012 and is working towards a Bachelor's degree in Biology at the University of Utah. She enjoys running, skiing, and yoga in her spare time.

Adam Welker

Adam Welker

Former Undergraduate Student

Adam was an undergraduate student at the University of Utah studying Biology. He is planning on pursuing a PharmD/Doctor of Pharmacy degree a the University of Utah. In his spare time he likes to ski, rock climb, mountain bike, and cook.

Diana Yu, PhD

Diana Yu, PhD

Former Postdoctoral Research Associate

Diana completed her PhD in Bioengineering at the University of California, San Diego in 2008. She did her postdoctoral training in the field of Stem Cell Biology and Neuroscience at the Salk Institute where she worked on the differentiation of hippocampal granule neurons from human pluripotent stem cells. Diana joined the Holmen lab as a postdoctoral research associate in the spring of 2016 and moved to Stanford in the fall of 2019.