Catherine Connon

Catherine Connon, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor

(804) 495-1159

Grace E. Harris Hall South, 1015 Floyd Ave., room 2012


  • Ph.D., Biology (specialization in forensic molecular biology), University of North Texas, 2015
  • Graduate Certificate, Forensic Genetic Genealogy, University of New Haven, 2023
  • M.S., Forensic Science, Virginia Commonwealth University, 2006
  • B.S., Biological Sciences, University of Missouri-Columbia, 2003


Dr. Connon is an assistant professor in the Department of Forensic Science at VCU, teaching several of the forensic biology track upper-level courses. She started her career in forensic molecular biology in 2006 with LabCorp in their Forensic Identity Department – a private, ASCLD accredited DNA laboratory with ISO 17025 certification formerly located in Research Triangle Park, NC. Following LabCorp’s acquisition of Orchid Cellmark (later Cellmark Forensics), Dr. Connon relocated to Dallas, TX to join Cellmark’s forensic R&D group, where she remained until 2015. During her employment with LabCorp/Cellmark, she served various roles, including processing forensic DNA casework, developing and validating new procedures, serving as a QA representative, manufacturing and reviewing forensic serology and DNA proficiency tests, and mentoring undergraduate and graduate student interns. Currently, she is a consultant for Bode Technology in northern Virginia and has recently earned a graduate certificate in Forensic Genetic Genealogy. Prior to her forensic molecular biology career, Dr. Connon worked in a plant genomics laboratory at the University of Missouri assisting with research involving various strains of maize mitochondrial genomes and maternally inherited diseases.

Research Interests

Anything and everything related to forensic biology! 

  • Improvements to forensic biology/DNA analysis procedures and workflow (efficiency, better results, cost savings)
  • Development of presumptive and confirmatory tests for EDTA detection in forensically relevant blood samples
  • Developing and implementing effective teaching strategies for forensic biology courses
  • DNA analysis softwares

Select Publications


  • American Academy of Forensic Sciences | Fellow
  • Mid-Atlantic Association of Forensic Scientists | Member
  • American Board of Criminalistics | Molecular Biology Diplomate


  • FRSC 300: Survey of Forensic Science
  • FRSC 385: Forensic Serology
  • FRSC/Z 438: Forensic Molecular Biology and Lab
  • FRSC 490: Professional Practices in Forensic Science
  • FRSC/Z 675: Serology and DNA Analysis and Lab


  • VCU CHS | GROWTH Award (2022)
  • Forensic Sciences Foundation | Lucas Grant (2018)