Hall Lab

University of Washington

Current Staff

Benjamin Hall, Ph.D
Principal Investigator

PhD Harvard 1958 in Physical Chemistry; Asst. Prof. of Chemistry, Univ. of Illinois 1959-62. Assoc. Prof. of Genetics, UW 1963-66. Professor 1966-2001, Dept. Chair 1980-84. Prof. Genome Sciences 2001-2007, Prof. Biology 2003-2007, Emeritus Professor of Genome Sciences and Biology 2008-present.

During the 38 years in Genetics, research was focused upon transcription mechanisms in S. cerevisiae . This work culminated in the patented invention "Expression of Polypeptides in Yeast. The UW, through Washington Research Foundation, has licensed this for the production of vaccines against Hepatitis B Virus and Human Pappiloma Virus, as well as recombinant Human Insulin, Victoza and other recombinant proteins. Licensing revenue to the University of Washington has supported diverse activities, ranging from faculty salaries and research grants to graduate student stipends. Awards to Prof. Hall include a Guggenheim Fellowship in 1963, the first inventor of the year award (Seattle Biomedicine) in 2004, and University of Kansas Distinguished Service Award in 2010. He was elected to membership in the American Academy of Arts & Sciences in 2010 and the National Academy of Science in 2015.

Valerie Soza, Ph.D
Research Scientist

After completing her undergraduate studies, Valerie was Botanical Field Studies Coordinator and Herbarium Curatorial Assistant at Rancho Santa Ana Botanic Garden in Claremont, CA, where she undertook a variety of conservation projects focused on CAs flowering plant diversity. She then received her Ph.D. in Biology in 2010 and completed her postdoctoral research in 2014 at the University of Washington, Seattle, examining the evolutionary history and development of flowers and sexual systems in a variety of plant genera. As a Research Scientist in the Hall Lab, Valerie is using molecular data to understand the tropical diversification of rhododendrons and to identify genes involved in flower symmetry changes in this group.

Elizabeth Ramage
Research Scientist

Beth received her undergraduate degree from the University of Washington in 1995, and has worked as a research scientist in Biology and Genome Sciences since that time. Since coming to the Hall Lab in 2014, she has used NGS and molecular biology methods to infer phylogeny among Rhododendron section Vireya .

Kyle McKinney
Research Technician

For 20 years, Kyle has worked on many facets of Rhododendron phylogeny and evolution while pursuing his musical career and completing his bachelor's degree in American Ethnic Studies. His daily responsibilities in the lab include lab maintenance and organization, DNA extraction, DNA sequencing, Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR), and field collection. In the future, he would like to encourage younger minority students to pursue education and careers in science!

Haley Deal

Haley is a senior at UW, working on her Bachelor of Science degree in Ecology, Evolution, Conservation Biology. She joined the Hall Lab as an undergraduate research assistant in 2015. Since then, she has worked on identifying duplicates of the CYC2 gene throughout Rhododendron with the hopes of understanding whether or not duplication events in this gene correlate to changes in floral symmetry. In the future, she hopes to continue her studies in genetics and plant science as a research scientist.

Beth, Valerie, and Haley at the UW Scavenger Hunt.

Celebrating Kyle's 20th year of working at the Hall Lab.

Past Staff

Christopher Liu - former Research Scientist
Adam Waalkes - former Research Scientist
Dale Lindsley - former Research Scientist
Michelle Stitzer - former Research Scientist
Amy Carlile - former Graduate Student
Matt Hodson - former Research Technologist
Yajuan Liu - former Research Scientist
Loretta Goetsch - former Research Scientist
Jie Luo - former Graduate Student
Andrew Eckert - former Graduate Student
John Stiller - former Graduate Student
Amy Denton - former Graduate Student