Tracee Lee Cocco
Tracee is an actress, model and stuntwoman who worked on Star Trek: The Next Generation, Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, and Star Trek: Voyager. She was most visibly seen as Lieutenant Jae, a regular background character on The Next Generation. She appeared in over 100 episodes as well as the three Next Generation feature films Star Trek Generations, Star Trek: First Contact, and Star Trek: Insurrection. Tracee also worked as stand-in for Alice Krige ("Borg Queen") in Star Trek: First Contact.
Besides her work on Star Trek where she received her SAG card, Tracee was also featured as Marla in the daily soap General Hospital and as a regular lifeguard in several episodes of Baywatch. A film veteran, she has also lent her voice to video games. Following her background work in Demolition Man, Tracee was cast as the lead computer voice in the Demolition Man Pinball game in 1994.
More recently, Cocco appeared as Khuhl in the two Star Trek: Renegades episodes "The Requiem, Part 1" and "The Requiem, Part 2" in 2017. She is also up to film the short science fiction film Civil War 2020 in which she'll play Chancellor Natalie Raven.
We are so excited to announce our next guest, Mary Chieffo! She plays Klingon Commander L’Rell on Star Trek: Discovery – a strong, smart female warrior struggling to reunify the Klingon Empire. Throughout two seasons, she has proven herself to be a versatile and magnetizing actress, who humanizes L’Rell’s experiences in the Federation-Klingon War.
Mary is a Juliard graduate with an extensive background in theatrical work. Her previous roles include Macbeth in an all-female production by Erica Schmidt; Iago in an all-female production of Othello for the Harlem Shakespeare Festival; and the one-woman show, Lover, Beloved: An Evening with Carson McCullers.
In film, Chieffo appeared opposite Academy Award-winner Octavia Spencer and Frances Fisher in The Perfect Fit directed by her mom Beth Grant, and winner of the Audience Award at the SoHo International Film Festival and Best Ensemble Award at Women's Independent Film Festival.
She is a self-described feminist and, as such, is working toward greater intersectional gender equality in front and behind the scenes in the entertainment industry. To that end, Mary is currently producing, writing, and starring in a feminist, gender, and color conscious Shakespeare adaptation alongside Viola Davis and Julius Tennon’s JuVee Productions.
Other current projects include starring as Jane in the upcoming webseries Digital Detox -- a futuristic rendering of Charlotte Perkins Gilman’s short story The Yellow Wallpaper.
Mary is also fast becoming a convention fan-favorite owing to her sense of humor and love of the community. She has a strong online presence so look to the Starbase Indy Facebook page for videos, retweets and shares of Mary’s social media.
Erin Macdonald (PhD, Astrophysics) currently works as a public speaker/educator and technical consultant, assisting others with explaining complex physics and astronomy ideas to varied audiences. Her undergraduate work was dual majored in Physics with Astrophysics and Mathematics from the University of Colorado at Boulder. She obtained a PhD in gravitational astrophysics from the University of Glasgow, having done research with the LIGO Scientific Collaboration (resulting in the 2017 Nobel Prize in Physics) on gravitational waves from dead and colliding stars and black holes. Since leaving research in 2014, she worked as an adjunct professor and educator at the Denver Museum for Nature and Science where she grew her passion for speaking to varied crowds on a number of subjects. She has become a regular fixture at popular culture conventions across the United States (Star Trek Las Vegas, Awesome Con, etc) through teaching the science behind science fiction such as Star Trek and Mass Effect, and she started bringing these talks online with her series "Dr Erin Explains the Universe". She also assists science fiction writers with their work, most recently on Orbital Redux with writer/director Steven Calcote and actor Yuri Lowenthal. Given her background, her specialty focuses on the use of general relativity in science fiction through faster-than-light travel, artificial gravity, alternate universes and more, and after teaching extensively in classrooms and at museums, she is well-versed in most fields of astronomy and physics.