Laurie Leonelli| | University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign
Laurie Leonelli is an assistant professor in the Department of Agricultural and Biological Engineering in the College of Agricultural, Consumer and Environmental Sciences and Grainger College of Engineering at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign. Her research explores the natural diversity found in photosynthetic organisms and engineers mechanisms that enhance photosynthesis in crops. For the RIPE project, Laurie's current focus is on engineering plants to use light more efficiently in the deeply shaded environment of the lower canopy. Laurie received her bachelor's degree in biological sciences at Mount Holyoke College and later earned her doctorate in plant biology at the University of California at Berkeley. She has completed postdoctoral positions focusing on photosynthesis systems biology at Berkeley and at NYU. Her work is published in several peer-reviewed journals including PNAS, The Plant Journal, and PLOS Pathogens.