This is a standard bio useful for introductions to scientific talks.
Matt grew up in the Bay Area, and was home alone during the 1989 Loma Prieta Earthquake. Though he was traumatized at the time, he quickly forgot about earth science until his sophomore year in college when his introductory Geology class at Stanford University was the first class that required him to go to the beach. He majored in Geological and Environmental Sciences before crossing the Bay for graduate school at UC Berkeley, where he received his Ph.D. in Geology in 2004. Returning to the west side of the Bay, he was a Mendenhall Postdoctoral Fellow at the U.S. Geological Survey. He then crossed the Pacific ocean where he was visiting professor at the University of Tokyo's Earthquake Research Institute.
His research addresses a broad range of problems in the science of earthquake faults, including how fault geometry affects fault behavior, frictional heat generation along faults, and surface deformation related to the earthquake cycle.
Other earth science highlights include working for Geomatrix Consultants doing geologic hazard assessment for major civic projects, appearing as an earthquake expert in specials for PBS and the National Geographic Channel, editing a series of articles on earthquake science in the San Francisco Chronicle to mark the 100th anniversary of the Great 1906 Earthquake, designing inquiry-based curriculum with teachers, and teaching math and earth science to inmates at San Quentin State Prison.
Matt's career has slowly shifted from science research to science education. In 2007, he became a full time Earth science teacher at El Cerrito High School, an urban public high school in the San Francisco Bay Area.