Emily Sigman is a unique constellation of bacteria, archaea, fungi, protists and viruses suspended in a matrix of roughly thirty trillion human cells and animated by a mysterious and wonderful process of simultaneous death and renewal. She graduated from Yale College in 2011 with degrees in philosophy and international studies. After Yale, Emily spent five years serving as the co-founder of an international housing and alternative living cooperative, where she learned how to grow and forage food, facilitate consensus-based decision-making, and talk to goats. She has studied, worked, and eaten ice cream in more than 75 countries, and speaks five and a half languages (not including goat). With the support of encouraging mentors, cherished friends, loving family members, a devoted partner, a menagerie of semi-domesticated animals, countless vegetables, and the National Science Foundation, Emily enjoyed a rollicking journey through graduate school, where she completed joint degrees in forestry and global affairs. As a political ecologist, her research interests include food systems, socio-ecological restoration, and—you guessed it—tsarist Russia.  After she graduates, Emily plans to finish and publish a book she is writing about chocolate. In her “free” “time” Emily enjoys hiking, swimming, raising quails, dancing tango and singing improvisational songs to telemarketers.