Peggy E. O’Neill received her B.S. degree summa cum laude with University Honors in geography from Northern Illinois University in 1976, her M.A. degree in geography from the University of California at Santa Barbara in 1979, and has done post-graduate work in civil and environmental engineering through Cornell University.
Since 1980 she has been employed as a Physical Scientist in the Hydrological Sciences Branch at NASA / Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, MD where she conducts research in soil moisture retrieval and land surface hydrology, primarily through microwave remote sensing techniques. She is currently the SMAP Deputy Project Scientist.