And interview with Jason Londo

Name: Jason P LondoJasonLondo

Current Job: Research Geneticist with the USDA, agriculture research service, grape genetics research unit.  Also Adjunct Associate Professor at Cornell University.

Scientific Discipline/Field:  Plant Biology/Plant Genetics

Country: United States of America

Pick some letters (L,G,B,T,Q etc.): G

What does your job involve?

My research program involves working in a laboratory, in grapevine vineyards, greenhouses, growth chambers, and on my computer analyzing data.  I research how environmental stresses affect grapevine growth and survival and I use methods to measure physiological changes in the plant as well as examining DNA variation and differences in gene expression.

How did you get to this job (education etc.)?

I have a bachelor’s degree in Molecular Biology and a PhD in Plant Biology.  In graduate school I worked on the domestication of cultivated rice and adaptation to acid/Aluminum toxic soils.  I also worked as a postdoctoral research associate for the EPA and for the University of Arkansas examining population ecology of transgenic canola before getting this position.

Do you feel being LGBT has affected your career decisions?

No.

Have you had any reactions from colleagues about being LGBT, either good or bad?

I would say its mostly been positive, no outward bias or judgment that I have detected.  Most people don’t know that I am LGBT though as talking about my personal life is reserved more for friends and less for coworkers.

Did you have any role models growing up (LGBT, STEM, totally unrelated…)?

I guess I would have to say not many while growing up.  I was always so infatuated with astronauts, but no one single one.  President Obama is the closest thing I can think of for a role model and inspiration.

What are your plans for the future?

Right now my aims are to advance my research program and hopefully help grapevine farmers as climate variability impacts their livelihoods.  I recently married my husband and I’m hoping to expand my family in the future.

Anything else you’d like to add?

Being LGBT is challenging, but times are changing and things are getting better.  Even in light of new challenges, our culture is evolving and will continue to be more accepting.  I hope I can help elevate LGBT acceptance and presence in STEM.

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