Kristi Watabe

Science M.S., University of Kansas

Kristi Leavitt Watabe teaches Lower School Science. She received an MS degree in geology, specializing in invertebrate paleontology, from the University of Kansas. While there, she studied fossil ostracods – very small crustaceans. She discovered, described, and named a new species from the Lower Permian Speiser Shale in Kansas. Kristi also holds a BS degree in geology from the University of Utah. She is a Waterford graduate – a member of the first class to graduate from the Sandy campus in 1990. Kristi started teaching at Waterford in 1995, but after four years, took a long break from teaching as she and her husband moved around the country as he completed his medical training. Kristi returned to teach in 2013. She has taught geology courses at Salt Lake Community College and Rochester Community and Technical College in Rochester, Minnesota.

When her children were young, she enjoyed volunteering as a fossil preparator at the Natural History Museum of Utah. In addition to her classroom responsibilities, Kristi is a Lower School robotics coach. She loves to travel with her family. Kristi and her husband Jeff have two kids, one is a Waterford graduate, and one is a student in the Upper School.