Dr. Laura Zaunbrecher, a 2000 graduate of Saranac Lake, earned her doctorate at Georgia State by successfully defending her thesis "The Enrichment of Stable Cesium and Rubidium in Savannah River Site Soils," a study of radioactive elements in soils near the Savannah River nuclear plant.
She earned bachelors' degrees in both math and physics in 2005 at University of Louisiana, where she was also a three-sport athlete, running for the cross country, indoor track, and outdoor track teams, breaking several records during her college running career.
In 2009, Dr. Zaunbrecher earned her master's degree in paleoclimatology at Georgia Tech before moving on to Georgia State to enter the doctorate program.
Dr. Zaunbrecher collects soil samples at the Savannah River site.
She joins her twin sister, Dr. Analise Zaunbrecher Reeves, as the second in her family to earn a Ph.D.
Zaunbrecher has represented Team USA twice at the World Sprint Triathlon, in Beijing in 2011 and New Zealand in 2012. In 2013 she will again represent our country as part of Team USA, this time along with her sister Analise as a teammate.
She is the daughter of Drs. Karl and Lynda Zaunbrecher of Saranac Lake.