Contessa Ricci

Postdoctoral Researcher
Washington State University

Humboldt State University, BS in Cellular Biology and Zoology

University of Texas at Arlington, PhD in Quantitative Biology

Dr. Contessa Ricci (she/her) is a postdoctoral researcher at Washington State University. Her research utilizes an array of computational methods with integrative and holistic approaches to address questions at the intersection of environmental health and human health. Dr Ricci has received fellowship funding from the National Science Foundation and has additionally worked in roles supported by the National Institutes of Health. Her research experience includes addressing coral reef declines resulting from bleaching and disease, the roles of mitochondria in adverse pregnancy outcomes like preeclampsia, and environmentally induced epigenetic signatures related to behavioral phenotypes in rainbow trout. She is motivated by research with actionable potential and primarily focuses on marine system dynamics. Dr. Contessa Ricci is a hapa Filipino that grew up in Hawai‘i, a first-generation college graduate, and was the first person in her family to pursue a higher degree. She is a strong proponent for equity and diversity because she understands that different life experiences prepare individuals in different ways, and that this should not determine a person’s success. As a mentor, she focuses on honing critical thinking because this is a necessary foundation for skills relevant to developing effective experimental designs and appropriate data analysis/interpretation. She additionally focuses on empowering her mentees by providing tools to prepare them for their future careers, such as skills related to networking, showcasing your value as a scientist, and navigating the ways you are perceived, especially as a woman or underrepresented minority. She is also a dog mom and outdoor enthusiast.


What are your passions and hobbies?

I like outdoor adventures, arts & crafts, gardening, and generally taking time to relax and enjoy life