Wally finished her Ph.D. at the Graduate School of Oceanography at the University of Rhode Island in 2007 and went on to do a postdoc at Louisiana State University. She came to Boston University in August 2008 and was awarded tenure in April 2014. She is a biogeochemist and ecosystems ecologist, whose research is focused on answering fundamental questions about energy flow and biogeochemical cycling of nutrients (nitrogen, phosphorus, and silica), carbon, and oxygen in a variety of environments. Her research has included coastal watershed mass balances of major biogenic elements in New England (C, N, P, Si), the biogeochemistry of nitrogen in coastal marine ecosystems, especially sediments, and wetland ecology in coastal Louisiana. Her recent focus has been on how climate change may influence the nitrogen cycle in estuarine and shelf systems and how anthropogenic impacts alter coastal nutrient cycles.