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Meet Our Staff

David Muddiman, Director

David C. Muddiman is the Jacob and Betty Belin Distinguished Professor of Chemistry and Director, Molecular Education, Technology, and Research Innovation Center (METRIC) at North Carolina State University in Raleigh, NC. Prior to moving his research group to NC State University in 2006, David was a Professor of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology and Founder and Director of the Proteomics Research Center at the Mayo Clinic College of Medicine in Rochester, MN. Prior to this appointment, David was an Associate Professor of Chemistry at Virginia Commonwealth University. It was there that he began his professional career as an assistant professor with an adjunct appointment in the Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biophysics and as a member of the Massey Cancer Center in 1997. These academic appointments followed a postdoctoral fellowship at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory in the Environmental Molecular Sciences Laboratory under Richard D. Smith from 1995-1997. David received his B.S. in chemistry from Gannon University (Erie, PA) in 1990 and his Ph.D. in Analytical Chemistry from the University of Pittsburgh in 1995 under the auspices of David M. Hercules. He is the recipient of the 2016 Graduate School Outstanding Graduate Faculty Mentor Award in the Mathematical, Physical Sciences, and Engineering, 2015 ACS Award in Chemical Instrumentation, 2010 Biemann Medal (American Society for Mass Spectrometry), 2009 NC State University Alumni Outstanding Research Award, the 2004 ACS Arthur F. Findeis Award, the 1999 American Society for Mass Spectrometry Research Award, and the 1990-1991 Safford Award for Excellence in Teaching (University of Pittsburgh).

Joe Barycki, Associate Director

Education: B.S. University of Rochester (New York) – 1991;  Ph.D. University of Delaware, Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry -1997; Post-Doctoral Researcher University of Minnesota, Department of Biochemistry, Biophysics, and Molecular Biology – 2002.
Areas of expertise:  enzyme assay development, protein production, macromolecular crystallography, biophysical methods of measuring protein-ligand and protein-protein interactions.

Pam Bunce, Program Specialist

Pam received a Master’s in Public Administration with a Management concentration from Marist College (NY) and earned a B.S. in Business from Fairfield University (CT). Previously, Pam was Assistant Budget Director at Vassar College (NY) where she worked in the central VP Finance Office assisting senior leadership on long range strategic operational and capital planning, risk management and diverse special projects focusing on qualitative research, process improvement and project management. Her work brought her across campus working on collaborative special projects for Directors in Buildings and Grounds, Controller’s office, Legal, Human Resources and Institutional Research. Pam worked for IBM for seven years as an analyst and has experience with several startup ventures.

Jennifer Sun, Senior Research Scholar, MR Spectroscopy

Jennifer obtained her Ph.D. in Chemistry at University of Michigan – Ann Arbor with Prof. Dr. Hashim Al-Hashimi. Before she joined the NMR facility in North Carolina State University, she worked as Scientist in P&G focused on studying small molecules and polymers. She has over ten years of experience in the NMR field working on various projects in the areas of small molecule, polymer, chemical engineering, food science, soil study, metabolomics, and bio-medical engineering.

Peter Thompson, Senior Research Scholar, MR Spectroscopy

Peter received his B.S. in Biochemistry at North Carolina State University and his Ph.D. in Biochemistry at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in the lab of Dr. Sharon Campbell. He used NMR and other biophysical and biochemical techniques in his doctoral work to study the function of the vinculin tail domain in cellular adhesion. He then did his postdoctoral work with Dr. Bob London and Dr. Geoffrey Mueller at NIEHS, where he studied allergen:lipid interactions. Peter has used NMR spectroscopy to study biomolecular systems since 2009. His areas of expertise include protein structure, protein dynamics, protein:ligand interactions, and metabolomics, including the use of Chenomx software.

Taufika Islam Williams, Senior Research Scholar, Mass Spectrometry

Taufika received her B.A. degree, double majoring in Chemistry and Mathematics, from Transylvania University in Lexington, KY. She received her M.S. degree in Analytical Chemistry from Purdue University in West Lafayette, IN, under the guidance of Dr. R. Graham Cooks. Her Ph.D. in Analytical Chemistry was from the University of Kentucky in Lexington, KY, in the laboratory of Dr. Bert C. Lynn. She completed a post-doctoral fellowship under the guidance of Dr. David C. Muddiman at North Carolina State University in Raleigh, NC. Following a six month tenure as Research Assistant Professor in the Muddiman Laboratory, Taufika spent ten years as the Director of the North Carolina State University Mass Spectrometry Facility. She is an expert in modern proteomics and small molecule mass spectrometry, with 20 years of relevant experience.

Whitney Stutts, Senior Research Scholar, Mass Spectrometry

Whitney received her B.S. in Chemistry at North Carolina State University and Ph.D. in Chemistry at the University of Florida. Her doctoral research in Dr. Richard Yost’s group involved developing matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization tandem mass spectrometry and mass spectrometric imaging techniques for the analysis of lipids and their degradation products in biological tissues. Prior to joining METRIC, Whitney completed a postdoctoral fellowship and worked as a Chemist in the Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition at the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. Her work at the FDA primarily involved developing and validating analytical methods for the separation, detection and quantification of toxins in foods and dietary supplements. She has more than thirteen years of experience in small molecule mass spectrometry, including lipidomics, metabolomics and mass spectrometric imaging.

Jeff Enders, Senior Research Scholar, Mass Spectrometry
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Jeff earned his B.S. in chemistry and M.S. in analytical chemistry, concurrently, from Drexel University in Philadelphia in 2007. Following this, he attended Vanderbilt University in Nashville, earning his Ph.D. in 2012. His thesis work focused on combining microfluidics with ion mobility-mass spectrometry techniques to probe in vitro toxicological stimuli under the guidance of Dr. John McLean. Following graduation, Jeff worked for six years in industry developing small molecule quantitative mass spectrometric assays using triple quadrupole and quadrupole time-of-flight instrumentation. Since starting at NC State in 2017, Jeff has managed projects in the areas of proteomics, metabolomics, glycomics, environmental contaminants, and elemental analysis.

Rebecca Weed, Research Scholar, Mass Spectrometry

Rebecca received her B.S. in Biology from Middle Georgia State University in 2008 and her Ph.D. in Molecular Plant Sciences from Washington State University in 2019. Using a metabolomic approach, her doctoral work focused on understanding allelopathic interactions in invasive plants and how fungal pathogens can modulate the plant host’s metabolome to escape detection. She has over six years of mass spectrometry and metabolomics experience focused on analyzing small molecules from various plant species. During her time at METRIC, Rebecca has worked on developing methods to quantify per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) from either water and biological matrices.

Leonard Collins, Research Assistant, Mass Spectrometry

Leonard earned a Bachelor of Science in Chemistry from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in 1993. He began his career as an analytical chemist in RTP by working in pharmaceutical QA testing and then agrichemical environmental fate testing. While working at the Mississippi State Chemical Lab from 1999 to 2005, he earned an MBA in 2004. Leonard became a Research Specialist at UNC-Chapel Hill in 2006 and worked in the Biomarker Mass Spectrometry facility until arriving at NC State in 2020. Leonard has experience developing mass spectrometry methods for DNA and RNA oligos, DNA damage products, single nucleotides, intact proteins and peptides, natural molecules and metabolites, drugs and metabolites, and environmental contaminants such as PAHs and PFAS.

Yu-Chun Chiu, Post-Doctoral Research Scholar, Mass Spectrometry

Yu-Chun received her B.S. in Horticulture and Landscape Architecture at National Taiwan University in Taipei, Taiwan in 2008. She then studied abroad in the US and earned her M.S. at North Carolina State University in Horticultural Science with a focus on Brassica genomic mapping and phytochemical profiling in 2013. She completed her Ph.D. in Plant and Soil Sciences at West Virginia University in 2019. Her doctoral research focused on how certain elicitors affect primary metabolites and phytochemicals in Brassica vegetables by implementing metabolomic analysis. She has five years of HPLC and GC-MS experience analyzing primary and secondary metabolites of food crops.

Paul Swartz, Research Assistant Professor, X-ray Crystallography
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Paul received his undergraduate degree in Biochemistry, in 1985, from Oklahoma State University working on mammalian NAD Kinase characterization and niacin production in plants.  He received his MS degree in Biochemistry, in 1987, from the same institution studying insect pheromones using GC/MS techniques. Paul received his Ph.D. from Washington State University, in 1996, in Biochemistry working with Dr. Toshiko Ichiye and studying redox proteins using molecular dynamics simulations and semi-empirical QM methods. Following were a post-doctoral position at University of Washington, Texas A&M University, University of North Carolina and North Carolina State University.  Paul was then employed by North Carolina State University Department of Molecular and Structural Biochemistry to manage and operate the macromolecular x-ray crystallography laboratory and access to the beamlines available at Southeast Regional Collaborative Access Team (SERCAT).  He has been in that position since 2004 and has assisted researchers in collecting data for, modelling, and depositing about 180 crystal structures to the PDB and preparing about 75 publications.

Ken Garrard, Senior Research Scholar, Mass Spectrometry

Ken graduated from North Carolina State University in 1979 with a B.S. in Computer Science and in 1983 with an M.S. in Computer Studies. His professional career began in 1977 as a scientific programmer for the Burroughs Wellcome Company where he developed statistical analysis software for linear and non-linear pharmacokinetics and tools for parsing canonical representations of molecular formulas for a compound database system. After graduate school he worked as an independent consultant building industrial real-time control systems and embedded operating systems. He joined the Precision Engineering Center at NC State as a full-time researcher in 1986 where he has collaborated on a wide variety of engineering and science projects, including freeform reflective optics for space telescopes, target fabrication for inertial confinement fusion, and the fabrication and metrology of precision optical and opto-mechanical surfaces. In 2012 he began a collaboration with the FTMS Laboratory for Human Health Research to develop the IR-MALDESI mass spectrometry imaging platform. He is the author of the experiment setup and control software for that system as well as MSiReader, a vendor neutral, open-source application for the visualization and analysis of MSI data with world-wide distribution.

Dániel Krakkó, Research Scholar, Mass Spectrometry

Dániel received his B.S., M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in Chemistry with a focus on Analytical Chemistry at the Eötvös Loránd University, Hungary. After finishing his Ph.D., he joined Dr. Andras Perl’s group at SUNY Upstate Medical University in Syracuse, NY, where he was conducting metabolomic studies in mouse models and cell lines. Overall, he has over six years of experience in small molecule mass spectrometry.