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Sangmi Lee

 

Sangmi Lee was born and raised in South Korea. She started learning about insects when she was a young girl who chased grasshoppers so she could eat their fried legs. Her fascination with moths led her to concentrate on microlepidoptera during her undergraduate program at Kangwon Nat'l University. As a graduate student of Dr. Kyu-Tek Park, she received her M.Sc. degree with her thesis entitled "Systematics of Subfamily Gelechiinae in Korea." Sangmi received her Ph.D. under Dr. Richard L. Brown at Mississippi State University with her dissertation entitled "Systematics of Holarctic genera of Teleiodini (Lepidoptera: Gelechiidae)."

Sangmi has specialized on Gelechiidae for the past 15 years, and has published 25 scientific papers and 6 non-refereed identification aids on Gelechiidae and other microlepidoptera. She has also made many presentations at regional, national, and international meetings. Since 2002 she has curated and identified gelechiids in many collections in North America, becoming one of the foremost experts in this difficult group. Sangmi has developed the most comprehensive website on Gelechiidae which includes a global framework for phylogenetics and classification of Gelechioidea. She has contributed educational videos on collecting and dissecting microlepidoptera that are available on YouTube. Sangmi is the Collection Manager of the Hasbrouck Insect Collection at Arizona State University, since 2012, and she serves as a referee on the Moth Photographers Group (MPG) website for identifications of gelechiids.

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