Award Winners

2017 Recipients of Women in Cognitive Science Mentorship Award

Jelena Ristic, McGill University

Jelena Ristic is an Associate Professor and William Dawson Scholar at the Department of Psychology at McGill University in Montreal, Canada. She completed her PhD at the University of British Columbia and her postdoctoral training at the University of California Santa Barbara. Prof. Ristic direct the laboratory for Attention and Social Cognition where she studies how attention enables our perceptions, thoughts, and social behaviors.

Kristi Multhaup, Davidson College

Kristi Multhaup is the Vail Professor of Psychology at Davidson College. She earned her PhD in experimental (cognitive) psychology from Princeton University and completed postdoctoral research in aging at both Washington University in St. Louis and Duke University. Dr. Multhaup has headed Davidson’s Cognitive Aging Lab since 1996. Her main research interests are in memory; additional lines of research include cognitive control and the effects of video game training on older adults’ cognitive performance (supported by an NIH AREA grant). In 2007 she was honored with the Hunter-Hamilton Love of Teaching Award.

2017 Recipients of The Psychonomic Society and Women in Cognitive Science Travel and Networking Award for Junior Scientists

Emma Holmes, University of Western Ontario

Dr. Emma Holmes is currently a postdoctoral researcher at the University of Western Ontario (Canada), working with Dr. Ingrid Johnsrude. She received her Ph.D. in Psychology (2016) from the University of York (U.K.). Her research investigates how prior knowledge can help listeners to understand speech in challenging listening environments, such as when several talkers speak at the same time.

Sarah Irons, Rice University

Sarah Irons is a 2nd year graduate student at Rice University working with Dr. Simon Fischer-Baum. She received a B.S. in Biology and a B.A. in Sociology and Psychology from Centenary College of Louisiana (2016). Her research interests include using phonetic measurement to understand cognitive processes in speech production and reading, computational cognitive neuropsychology and sociolinguistics.

2017 Recipients of Women in Cognitive Science Travel and Networking Award

Kelly Bennion, Psychology at California Polytechnic State University in San Luis Obispo

Dr. Kelly Bennion is currently an Assistant Professor of Psychology at California Polytechnic State University in San Luis Obispo, CA. She earned her B.A. (2010) in Psychology and Spanish from Middlebury College, where she began her research studying memory under the direction of Dr. Jason Arndt. She then received her Ed.M. (2011) in Mind, Brain, and Education from the Harvard Graduate School of Education, and M.A. (2013) and Ph.D. (2016) in Psychology (concentration in Cognitive Neuroscience) from Boston College. As a graduate student, she was advised and mentored by Dr. Elizabeth Kensinger.
Dr. Bennion’s research uses a combination of behavioral, eye tracking, polysomnography, and neuroimaging approaches to investigate the effects of sleep and several real-life variables (e.g., emotion, physiological arousal, stress) on memory consolidation. As sleep selectively enhances memory for certain experiences over others, Dr. Bennion seeks to better understand how such information is initially selected for this preferential processing, and how we may best prioritize information during encoding to lead to optimal consolidation during sleep.

Marina Gross, Washington University, Saint Louis

Marina P. Gross is doing her graduate work with Ian Dobbins at Washington University in Saint Louis. She received her Bachelor of Science in Psychology with Honors and Phi Beta Kappa distinction from the University of Oregon under the supervision of Nash Unsworth.
Her research utilizes pupil dilation as an online measure of various cognitive process, such as attentional orienting and effort, to better understand their contributions to memory encoding and retrieval. One of her current projects aims to differentiate pupillary effects arising from time pressure versus depth of processing during memory encoding. She was awarded a three-year NSF Graduate Research Fellowship for this proposal.
Another line of research, on which she will present at this year’s Psychonomics meeting, examines the influence of prior recognition judgments on subsequent recognition judgments. These sequential recognition dependencies may be exaggerated when assessments of memory confidence and classification are merged into a single response. You can visit her poster 4092 on this topic during the Saturday poster session 12pm-1:30pm.

2016 Recipients of Women in Cognitive Science Mentorship Award

Irene Kan, Villanova University

After earning her PhD at the University of Pennsylvania, Dr. Irene Kan completed a post-doctoral fellowship at the Memory Disorders Research Center at the VA Boston Healthcare System and Boston University Medical Center. Dr. Kan is currently an Associate Professor in the Psychology Department at Villanova University. Dr. Kan’s research takes a converging evidence approach in the examination of the cognitive architecture and neural bases of human long-term memory and executive functions.

Jyotsna Vaid, Texas A&M University

Jyotsna Vaid is Professor of Cognition and Cognitive Neuroscience and Director of the Language and Cognition laboratory at Texas A&M University. She is a 2016 Fellow of the AAAS and the APA (Division 3), and a former Fellow of the APS. As part of her current administrative position in the Office for Diversity at Texas A&M, Vaid oversees a mentoring program for women faculty of color and a seed grant program. She and her students conduct research on the psycholinguistics of language processing in users of different languages and orthographies and on the cognitive underpinnings of creative language use.

2016 Recipients of The Psychonomic Society and Women in Cognitive Science Travel and Networking Award for Junior Scientists

Myrthe Faber, University of Notre Dame

Dr. Myrthe Faber is currently a postdoctoral research associate at the University of Notre Dame (USA), working with Dr. Sidney D’Mello. She received her Ph.D. in Psychology (2016) from the University of York (United Kingdom), and holds an M.A. (Linguistics, 2011) and two B.A. degrees (Linguistics, 2008; Dutch Language & Culture, 2008) from the University of Groningen (The Netherlands). Dr. Faber’s main research interest is how we build mental representations of discourse and visual events. She is interested in how the structure of text and events influences attention allocation and memory encoding, and how this in turn affects higher-level cognitive processes such as learning and decision making.

Angela Grant, Pennsylvania State University

Angela Grant is a Ph.D. candidate at The Pennsylvania State University, where she works with Dr. Ping Li investigating the role of cognitive control in second language acquisition. Before coming to Penn State, Angela received her B.A. in Psychology with honors from Bucknell University, where she was advised by Dr. Ruth Tincoff. Angela's research to date has investigated the relationship between linguistic and non-linguistic systems in second language learners and bilinguals, and she looks forward to expanding this line of research to incorporate effects of aging, specifically as applied to cognitive reserve.

2016 Recipients of Women in Cognitive Science Travel and Networking Award

Kathleen Arnold, Duke University

Dr. Kathleen Arnold is currently a postdoctoral fellow at Duke University, with broad research interests in learning and memory. At Duke, she is working with Dr. Elizabeth Marsh primarily on educational applications of cognitive psychology. Her research includes exploring the use of writing as a learning tool, the effects of prior knowledge on learning, and individual differences in learning. She received her B.S. (2007) from Furman University where she began her research career studying prospective memory under the direction of Dr. Gil Einstein. She went on to receive her M.A. (2009) and Ph.D. (2013) from Washington University in St. Louis where she was advised and mentored by Dr. Kathleen McDermott. As a graduate student she conducted research on retrieval practice effects, using memories to imagine future events, and encoding-retrieval interactions.

Heather Dial, University of Texas at Austin

Dr. Heather Dial is currently a postdoctoral fellow in Communication Sciences and Disorders at the University of Texas at Austin, working with Dr. Maya Henry. She received her B.S. in Psychology from the University of Houston (2010) and her Ph.D. in Psychology from Rice University (2016), working under the guidance of Dr. Randi Martin. Her graduate research evaluated models of speech perception and phonological short-term memory using evidence from aphasia. Her current research focuses on the cognitive and neural processes that support language. She is also working on defining neural and behavioral markers that would indicate rates of decline and candidacy for treatment in individuals with primary progressive aphasia.

2015 Recipients of Women in Cognitive Science Mentorship Award

Pernille Hemmer, Rutgers University

Pernille Hemmer is an Assistant Professor of Psychology at Rutgers University. She received her Ph.D. from the Department of Cognitive Science at the University of California, Irvine, and completed a post-doctoral fellowship in the Department of Psychology at Syracuse University. Her research is focused on the interaction between episodic and semantic memory, as well as decision making in naturalistic environments. Pernille Hemmer is currently a board member of The Society for Mathematical Psychology and a co-organizer for Women of Mathematical Psychology.

Kathy Pezdek, Claremont Graduate University

Kathy Pezdek (right, pictured here with her first mentee and graduate student, Ariella Lehrer, Ph.D., 1983, CEO and President, Legacy Games), is a Professor of Psychology at Claremont Graduate University, where she serves on the faculty and chairs the graduate program in Applied Cognitive Psychology. Dr. Pezdek’s research has focused on a range of topics related to Law and Psychology, including eyewitness memory and identification, and the suggestibility of memory. She is especially interested in questions related to the suggestibility of autobiographical memory, when it is reliable and when it is not. Her numerous M.A. and Ph.D. students have graduated and secured rewarding careers applying Cognitive Psychology in both academic and nonacademic setting. For additional information and hotlinks to all of Dr. Pezdek’s publications, please go to her web site,

2015 Recipients of The Psychonomic Society and Women in Cognitive Science Travel and Networking Award for Junior Scientists

Holly Bowen, Boston College

Dr. Holly Bowen is currently a postdoctoral fellow at Boston College, working with Dr. Elizabeth Kensinger. She received her M.A. (2009) and Ph.D. (2013) in psychology from Ryerson University in Toronto, Canada, working with Dr. Julia Spaniol. Dr. Bowen’s research focuses on how emotion and motivational states influence how we form memories, remember past experiences and how the links between emotion, motivation and memory change as we age.

Sharda Umanath, Claremont McKenna College

Dr. Sharda Umanath is currently an assistant professor of psychology at Claremont McKenna College. She earned her A.B. (2009) in philosophy-neuroscience-psychology from Washington University in St. Louis and her M.A. (2012) and her Ph.D. (2014) in cognitive psychology from Duke University. During graduate school, she was advised and mentored Dr. Elizabeth Marsh as well as Dr. David Rubin. She then did a one year post-doctoral research fellowship in aging and development at Washington University in St. Louis, working with Dr. Mark McDaniel, Dr. Dave Balota, and Dr. Henry Roediger III. Dr. Umanath began her tenure as an assistant professor of psychology at Claremont McKenna College in the Fall of 2015. Dr. Umanath’s research interests primarily involve how prior knowledge can influence remembering. Her main line of research explores impacts of prior knowledge in healthy aging. She is also interested in the interplay between personal life stories and knowledge in the form of cultural life scripts in autobiographical memory as well as how general knowledge shapes and is shaped by national collective memories of the past.

2015 Recipients of Women in Cognitive Science Travel and Networking Award

Sarah DeLozier, Colorado State University

Ms. DeLozier is currently a Ph.D. student at Colorado State University (CSU), working with Dr. Matthew Rhodes in the area of memory and metacognition. Before CSU, she received her B.A. in psychology at Kent State University, Kent, OH, where she worked under Dr. John Dunlosky. Ms. DeLozier’s program of research focuses on learning practices supporting enduring memory and retention, particularly when students regulate their own learning.

Karen Schloss, Brown University

Dr. Karen Schloss is currently an assistant professor of research in the Department of Cognitive, Linguistic, and Psychological Sciences at Brown University. She received her Ph.D. (2011) from the University of California, Berkeley, working with Dr. Stephen Palmer. Dr. Schloss’s research focuses on how observers make predictions about objects and entities based on their cognitive and emotional responses to perceptual information. She is currently investigating how people’s associations with colors influence cognitive processing in three broad areas: (1) aesthetic response, (2) judgment and decision making, and (3) interpretation of information visualizations. She also investigates more traditional topics in visual perception, including how perceptual organization influences illusions of size, shape, and motion.

2014 Recipients of The Psychonomic Society and Women in Cognitive Science Travel and Networking Award for Junior Scientists

Jimmeka J. Guillory, Spelman College

Dr. Jimmeka Guillory is currently an assistant professor of psychology at Spelman College. She earned her B.S. (2006), M.S. (2009) and her Ph.D. (2011) in cognitive psychology from Texas A&M University. During this time, Dr. Guillory was advised and mentored by Dr. Lisa Geraci, as well as Dr. Steven Smith. Dr. Guillory began her tenure as an assistant professor of psychology at Spelman College in the Fall of 2011. Dr. Guillory’s research interests include the various levels of conscious experience associated with memory. Her primary line of research explores memory updating, including the persistence of incorrect inferences in memory. Her research examines the factors that may allow people to overcome the lingering effects of false information. She is specifically interested in the political, medical and educational applications of belief perseverance. In a second line of research, she studies cognition and student learning. Here she examines how students learn and remember information in the classroom. Dr. Guillory also has research interests in aging and memory.

Vanessa Loaiza, University of Zurich

Dr. Vanessa Loaiza is currently a post-doctoral fellow at the University of Zurich, working with Klaus Oberauer. She is also a Lecturer at the University of Fribourg, where she was previously a post-doctoral fellow with Valerie Camos. Dr. Loaiza obtained her M.S. and Ph.D. in cognitive psychology at Colorado State University in Fort Collins, Colorado. She worked with Matthew Rhodes and with the late David McCabe. Before CSU, she received my B.A. in psychology and philosophy at Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles, California, where she grew up. Dr. Loaiza's current research is primarily concerned with processes and mechanisms supporting working memory across the lifespan.

2014 Recipients of Women in Cognitive Science Travel and Networking Award

Blaire Weidler, Washington University in St. Louis

Ms. Weidler is interested in visual attention - and more specifically how an individual's ability to interact with the environment affects his or her vision. For example, Ms. Weidler investigates how one's body posture affects vision and cognition. In addition, she is interested in how interacting with objects affects how they are subsequently perceived.

Danielle Davis, University of Florida

Ms. Davis received a double major in psychology and sociology from Maryville University-St. Louis in St. Louis, Missouri. She received her Master of Science degree in the spring of 2014 from the Department of Psychology at the University of Florida, under the supervision of Dr. Lise Abrams in the Cognition and Aging Laboratory, and is currently working toward her Ph.D. Her program of research as a graduate student focuses on the cognitive processes underlying memory retrieval failures and language production/comprehension, with a specific focus on how these processes change during normal aging.

2014 Recipients of Women in Cognitive Science Mentorship Award

Keith Rayner, 1943-2015

Dr. Rayner began working at UCSD in 2008. Before then he was at UMass, Amherst starting in 1978 (previously at the University of Rochester). Dr. Rayner was primarily interested in the process of skilled reading and use eye movement data to make inferences about perceptual and cognitive processes. He was also interested in various issues in psycholinguistics (resolution of ambiguity, discourse processing) and in scene perception and visual search.

Tessa Warren, University of Pittsburgh

Dr. Warren's research focuses on how we understand sentences. She has addressed questions ranging from: how do cognition and working memory constrain comprehension, to: how does sentence comprehension influence eye movements during reading, to: what kinds of knowledge support our understanding of sentences. Her work has investigated sentence comprehension in younger and older adults using their native language, young adults learning a second language, and people with aphasia.