Callie R. Chappell

Welcome to the website of

Callie Rodgers Chappell


Hello world,

Who am I?

I am a Ph.D. candidate at Stanford University's Department of Biology in the community ecology lab of Tadashi Fukami. I study effects of genetic variation on species interactions and community assembly. With a background in molecular biology from the University of Michigan, I am interested in using my research to better understand the conservation and policy implications of bioengineering wild organisms. In addition to scientific research, I am also involved in science outreach, inclusion and equity in STEM, and science communication.

I am a National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellow and Stanford Graduate Fellow.

Law School McCoy (
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2017-2021 - Ph.D. Stanford University, Biology (Ecology & Evolution)

Advisor: Dr. Tadashi Fukami, Department of Biology

2016-2017 - M.Sc. University of Michigan, Molecular Cellular, & Developmental Biology

Advisor: Dr. David Sherman, Department of Medicinal Chemistry, Department of Chemistry, Department of Microbiology & Immunology

2013-2016 - B.Sc. University of Michigan, Biology

Advisor: Dr. Mark Hunter, Department of Ecology & Evolutionary Biology


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Asclepias Syriaca

Image Source: Roundstone Native Seed Company

Aphis Nerii

Image Source: Andrew C, Wikimedia Commons

C. Anna (Anna's Hummingbird)

Image Source: California State University

M. Aurantiacus (Sticky Monkeyflower)

Image Source: California State University
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As a researcher, I am interested in understanding how invisible factors -- chemicals, genes, and interactions -- shape ecological communities. Currently, I am a PhD student in the Fukami Lab (Ecology & Evolutionary Biology) at Stanford University, investigating the effects of genetic diversity on community processes.



I study the effects of genetic variation on ecological communities. Specifically, I focus the mechanisms involved in species interactions that give rise to priority effects, higher order interactions, community assembly, and eco-evolutionary dynamics. I use a combination of laboratory and field research to address these questions.


In every ecosystem, there is an invisible web of chemicals that mediate interactions between individuals. I use analytical chemistry (LC-MS, HPLC/UPLC, NMR) to identify and isolate these chemical compounds in order to learn how they influence interactions between individuals (e.g. plant/herbivore or plant/pollinator interactions), populations, communities, and ecosystems.



Molecular biology provides a helpful set of tools and approaches with which to investigate the mechanisms that may drive changes in community composition. I use multi-omics, meta-omics, and gene editing to stud how genes influence ecological communities.

Afghan Girl.jpg


Art & Design



As an artist, I traverse the boundaries between art, science, and social justice. I am especially interested in using art as a means of political and social change, as well as break down barriers in communication between researchers and those outside of academic science.

Charcoal on graphite

Archival ink on watercolor

Digital art

Graphic Design

Tobias' Cat , Digital Print (Procreate, iPad Pro 2017)

Tobias' Cat, Digital Print (Procreate, iPad Pro 2017)

This video describes the importance of vector graphics using Adobe Illustrator CC. This video is targeted at scientists who want to learn how to use Illustrator and was a part of longer infographics workshop by Stanford University student group STAR (Science Teaching Through Art) in January of 2018.
We are the war.
— Susanne Kappeler
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As a scientist and citizen, contributing to my community is extremely important to me. I want to create change, both on a community and institutional level, and I have pursued service opportunities in social justice, education, and policy/law to accomplish this goal. 

Science Communication & OUtreach

I currently organize STAR (Science Teaching through Art), a Stanford student organization that teaches scientists how to communicate their research. I also have pursued social justice initiatives as a primary coordinator of an outreach program (D-RISE) that provided high school students in Detroit with synthetic and analytical chemistry research projects, was the driving force behind a program that connected undergraduate women in the sciences to female mentors in STEM, and was the founder and president of a student organization for the philosophy of science (the {POSIT} Society) at the University of Michigan. 


I have taught at the university level and designed innovative biology curriculums for introductory and advanced undergraduate courses at the Stanford University and the University of Michigan. In these classes, I have developed flipped-classroom and course-based undergraduate research curricula. At the elementary and middle school levels, I have taught innovation summer camps through Galileo (Chicago, IL) and have taught limnology aboard a large educational Schooner with Inland Seas Education Association (Suttons Bay, MI). 

Policy & Law

I currently run the Stanford Science Polixy Group, which plans events for graduate students who want to learn more about science policy. Previously, I have collaborated with local governments to draft legislation limiting hydraulic fracturing (fracking) with an environmental policy think tank (FLOW) and volunteered with the Huron River Watershed Council to work on citizen science initiatives and local fishing regulations. As a former debater, I run Go, Fight, Win!, an educational organization providing a free policy debate curriculum to schools in need.