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I was born in Chester (UK) in 1971. My BSc in Physics was at Imperial College in London (1990-1994), and my PhD (thesis: The diffraction of atoms by light) with Prof. Sir Michael Berry at the University of Bristol (1994-1998). As a Royal Society International Exchange Fellow I went to the Weizmann Institute of Science to work in the quantum optics group of Prof. Gershon Kurizki (1998-2001). I returned to the UK in 2001 to work with Dr. Claudia Eberlein at the University of Sussex on Bose-Einstein condensates (BECs) and in 2002 I took up an EPSRC 3-year postdoctoral fellowship in theoretical physics. This also enabled me to spend one year (2004-2005) at the University of Toronto working with Prof. Allan Griffin on the hydrodynamics of superfluid Fermi gases near the BCS-BEC crossover. In Dec 2005 I joined the Centre for Cold Matter at Imperial College to work with Prof. Ed Hinds. I arrived at McMaster in January 2007.