Have You Met … Simon Otto?

Meet Simon Otto, Assistant Professor in the School of Public Health.


Have you met Dr. Simon Otto, Assistant Professor in the School of Public Health? Spend a few minutes getting to know him better.

What is your first U of A memory?

Staying with a friend (a U of A student) at Hub Mall when I was 17! I remember him showing me his first year labs in V-Wing.

What’s something your coworkers don’t know about you?

My favourite movie is Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery.

What’s your favourite distraction?

Riding one of my multiple bikes in any weather — sun, rain or snow.

If you were enrolling in one course, program or degree right now, what would it be?

Bioinformatics. I wish I had the computer skills to tackle this work to link gene sequencing to meaningful and understandable outcomes.

What’s a weird pet peeve you have?

When I can’t clean the mud off my bike after a dirty ride.

You can invite anyone — alive or dead, real or fictional — to dinner. Who would it be?

Alexander Fleming. I study antimicrobial resistance (AMR). I would love to talk to him about the fact that the person who discovered penicillin also discovered AMR!

If you could see any live performance tomorrow, what would it be?

The Beatles. There are a lot of bands I would love to see, but seeing one of the early Beatles shows was a generational experience.

What advice would you give your 18-year-old self?

Ride my bike more and work less.

What’s one thing you can’t live without?

I can’t live without being outside. During the pandemic I tried to ride my bike indoors on Zwift. That lasted about two weeks before I just needed to get outside. I also love being out in the mountains!

What words describe your U of A experience?

Rewarding and hard work.

Dr. Simon Otto, Assistant Professor in the School of Public Health

About Simon

Simon Otto is an Assistant Professor in the School of Public Health. He is a veterinarian and epidemiologist, teaches One Health, Food Safety, and Investigation of Foodborne Illness. He also leads the Human-Environment-Animal Transdisciplinary Antimicrobial Resistance (HEAT-AMR) Research Group and is a featured researcher in the Telus World of Science Health Zone exhibit.

Find Dr. Otto on ORCID.