Profile Details

Assistant Astronomer
Name of employee

Dr. Beaton joined the Roman Telescope Branch in 2022.  Prior to this, she was a Carnegie-Princeton Fellow and a Hubble Fellow at Princeton University (Princeton, NJ; 2017-2022) and a Postdoctoral Research Associate at the Observatories of the Carnegie Institution for Science (Pasadena, CA; 2014-2017) after receiving her Ph.D. in 2014 from the University of Virginia; her Ph.D. Dissertation was recognized with the Robert C. Trumpler Award in 2016. She was a member of the Carnegie-Chicago Hubble Program to measure the Hubble constant and was a participant in the SDSS-IV APOGEE-2 to map the Milky Way Galaxy.

Dr. Beaton is an observational astronomer who uses the resolved and semi-resolved stellar populations to understand properties of galaxies in the nearby universe. In particular, she is interested in measuring precise distances to the hosts of Supernova Ia and in securing the foundation of the distance scale locally with observations of stars in the Milky Way and Large Magellanic Clouds. For this work, she combines inferences from photometry and spectroscopy from ground and space.

Dr. Beaton served as the Science Working Group Chair of the Apache Point Galactic Evolution Experiment (APOGEE) in SDSS-IV from 2017 to the conclusion of the project in 2022. She also served as the co-Chair of the Committee On INclusiveness in SDSS-IV (COINS) from 2018 to 2022 and will serve on the transition team within SDSS-V. Dr. Beaton joined the Board of the Astronomical Society of the Pacific in 2022.  She also has served on the Cosmic Origins Program Analysis Group (COPAG) Executive Committee as the co-Chair of the Stars Science Interest Group (SIG) since 2021 and on the NASA Extragalactic Database (NED) User’s Committee since 2018.


PhD in Astronomy, University of Virginia
MS in Astronomy, University of Virginia
BA in Astronomy-Physics and Mathematics, University of Virginia


Science Interests:

  • Fundamental Stellar Parameters
  • Photometrics and Spectroscopic Surveys of Stars
  • Near-Field Cosmology
  • Precision Photometry


Research Topics: Star Formation, Histories, and Evolution; Local Group Galaxies; Stellar Populations; Star Clusters; Resolved Stellar Populations; Astrochemistry, Chemical Abundances, Instrumentation; Near-Field Cosmology


ORCID ID: 0000-0002-1691-8217


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