Trust Workshop Participant Biographies*

*members of the Roundtable on Public Interfaces of the Life Sciences

Ann M. Bartuska is Deputy Under Secretary for USDA’s Research, Education, and Economics (REE) (@scienceatusda) mission area. She came to REE in September 2010 from the USDA Forest Service, where she was Deputy Chief for Research & Development, a position she held since January 2004. She served as Acting USDA Deputy Undersecretary for Natural Resources and Environment from January – October of 2009, and was the Executive Director of the Invasive Species Initiative of the Nature Conservancy from 2001-2004. Prior to this, she was the Director of the Forest and Rangelands staff in the Forest Service in Washington, DC. Bartuska is an ecosystem ecologist with degrees from Wilkes College (B.S.), Ohio University (M.S.) and West Virginia University (Ph.D.). She represents USDA on the Committee on Environment, Natural Resources and Sustainability of the White House National Science and Technology Council.  Bartuska is currently on the Multi-disciplinary Expert Panel of the Intergovernmental Panel on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services, chartered by UNEP, and is active in the Ecological Society of America, serving as Vice-President for Public Affairs from 1996-1999 and as president from 2002-2003.  She has served as co-chair of the Science and Technology for Sustainability Roundtable of the National Academies, on the Board of the Council of Science Society Presidents, and is a member of American Association for the Advancement of Science and SACNAS Society for the Advancement of Chicanos and Native Americans in Science.

Cynthia Beall* is Distinguished University Professor and S. Idell Pyle Professor of Anthropology (@CWRUartsci) at Case Western Reserve University where she began teaching and research in 1976. She received a Ph.D. in 1976 and an M.A. in 1972 from The Pennsylvania State University where she trained with Paul Baker. Professor Beall is a member of the U.S. National Academy of Sciences, American Philosophical Society, and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.  She has served on a number of NAS/NRC committees and is currently a member of the Division Committee for the Behavioral and Social Sciences and Education and co-chair for the Roundtable on Public Interfaces of Life Sciences.  She has been a founding co-organizer of Science Café Cleveland for nearly eight years. Cynthia Beall is a physical anthropologist whose research focuses on human adaptation to high-altitude hypoxia, particularly the different patterns of adaptation exhibited by Andean, Tibetan and East African highlanders. Beall is currently working to integrate genomics and human biology to discover how indigenous people living at high altitudes evolve and adapt to the stress of very low oxygen availability. This entails fieldwork in mountainous regions of Bolivia, Ethiopia, Nepal, Mongolia, Peru, and the Tibet Autonomous Region of China where millions of people live at altitudes of 10,000’ or more.  This avenue of research contributes to the larger question of how evolution and adaptation operate in modern human populations.

Julia Belluz (@juliaoftoronto) is a National Magazine Award-winning journalist covering medicine and public health for She was a 2013-14 Knight Science Journalism Fellow at MIT. Julia’s writing has appeared in Maclean’s, the British Medical Journal, the Globe and Mail, the National Post, Slate, the Times (of London), the Economist, and other publications. Outside of reporting, Julia speaks regularly at health care and journalism conferences the world over. She holds an MSc. from the London School of Economics and a B.A. from Ryerson University’s School of Journalism. She is currently based in DC.

Rick Borchelt* (@RickBorchelt) is Director of Communications and Public Affairs at the US Department of Energy’s Office (DOE) of Science. Prior to DOE,  he served as the Special Assistant for Public Affairs to the director of the National Cancer Institute at NIH and director of NCI’s news office, providing strategic guidance and coordination of the Institute’s communications and public affairs programs. Mr. Borchelt is also the former communications director for the research, education, and economics mission area of USDA, and for the USDA Office of the Chief Scientist. Prior to the USDA, he was director of communications for the Pew‑funded Genetics and Public Policy Center at The Johns Hopkins University, where his work included message development, media relations, and strategic communications. He also is Lecturer in science policy and politics in the Hopkins Advanced Academic Programs division. He has had a varied career in science communications and science public policy, including stints as media relations director for the National Academy of Sciences; press secretary for the U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Science, Space and Technology under the chairmanship of the late Rep. George E. Brown, Jr.; special assistant for public affairs in the Executive Office of The President during the Clinton Administration; director of communications for the Department of Energy’s Office of Science; and director of communications and public affairs at The Whitehead Institute for Biomedical Research at MIT. He is an advisor to the NSF‑funded Nanoscale Informal Science Education (NISE) project, and was a committee member on the National Academy of Engineering’s study of public communication about engineering. An undergraduate biology major, he’s done graduate work in both insect systematics and science communication. Areas of particular interest include developing community based public engagement in science and adapting the Southern narrative tradition to science communication.

Timothy Caulfield (@caulfieldtim)is a Canada Research Chair in Health Law and Policy and a Professor in the Faculty of Law and the School of Public Health at the University of Alberta. He has been the Research Director of the Health Law Institute at the University of Alberta since 1993. Over the past several years he has been involved in a variety of interdisciplinary research endeavors that have allowed him to publish over 300 articles and book chapters. He is a Fellow of the Trudeau Foundation and the Principal Investigator for a number of large interdisciplinary projects that explore the ethical, legal and health policy issues associated with a range of topics, including stem cell research, genetics, patient safety, the prevention of chronic disease, obesity policy, the commercialization of research, complementary and alternative medicine and access to health care. Professor Caulfield is and has been involved with a number of national and international policy and research ethics committees, including: Canadian Biotechnology Advisory Committee; Genome Canada’s Science Advisory Committee; the Ethics and Public Policy Committee for International Society for Stem Cell Research; and the Federal Panel on Research Ethics. He has won numerous academic awards and is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada and the Canadian Academy of Health Sciences.  He writes frequently for the popular press on a range of health and science policy issues and is the author of The Cure for Everything: Untangling the Twisted Messages about Health, Fitness and Happiness (Penguin 2012) and Is Gwyneth Paltrow Wrong About Everything?: When Celebrity Culture and Science Clash (Penguin 2015).

Kirk Englehardt (@kirkenglehardt) is Director of Research Communication and Marketing for the Georgia Institute of Technology. He is the first person to serve in this role, responsible for developing the first integrated strategic marketing and communications plan for Georgia Tech’s $730 Million research enterprise. He leads through influence, providing strategic support for Georgia Tech’s research news activities, the university’s many research institutes and centers, research leadership and external partners. This includes focusing on how messages about Georgia Tech’s research are reaching, and resonating with, key internal and external audiences. Before assuming his current role, Kirk spent seven years leading communication activities for the Georgia Tech Research Institute. In that role he led an intensive rebranding effort that sparked tremendous growth, which included doubling the organization’s research revenue which is currently more than $300M annually. During his ten-year Georgia Tech career, Kirk’s teams have won more than 65 industry and professional society awards for communications strategy, measurement and tactics. Among them are a Bronze Anvil from the Public Relations Society of America, two TAMY marketing awards from the Technology Association of Georgia and Awards from both the Georgia Chapter and Southeast Region of the International Association of Business Communicators, for audience research conducted in support of Georgia Tech’s research communication strategy.

Declan Fahy (@fahydeclan) is an assistant professor at the School of Communication at American University, Washington, DC, where his research examines science journalism and science in popular culture. He is the author of The New Celebrity Scientists: Out of the Lab and Into the Limelight (Rowman & Littlefield, 2015). His scholarship has been published in Journalism, Journalism Studies, Nature Chemistry, Science Communication, BMC Medical Ethics, The ANNALS of the American Academy of Political and Social Science, and other journals.

Cary Funk (@surveyfunk) is associate director of research on science and society at the Pew Research Center. She is a co-author of Public and Scientists’ Views on Science and Society and How Scientists Engage the Public. She is a survey researcher with broad expertise in political and social attitudes, including politics and elections, race and ethnicity, and religion and U.S. politics. She has been specializing in public understanding of science topics since 2001. Prior to joining Pew Research, she directed the VCU Life Sciences Surveys, national surveys on science and biotechnology. She has served as an outside consultant and advisor for numerous projects about the science and engineering workforce and public opinion on science. She is currently on the editorial board of the Bulletin of Science and Technology & Society. Funk began her career at CBS News in New York, where she worked on pre-election surveys and exit polls; in more recent years, she served as an election night analyst for NBC News. She was on the political science faculty at Rice University and at Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU) before joining the Pew Research Center. While an associate professor at VCU, she directed statewide polls on politics and public policy issues and on K-12 education, in addition to the VCU Life Sciences Surveys. She earned a doctorate and a master’s in social psychology from the University of California, Los Angeles. Funk has published numerous academic articles and book chapters in the fields of political science, public opinion and political behavior and is a co-author of The Rise of Asian Americans, Asian Americans: A Mosaic of Faiths, “Nones” on the Rise and The Shifting Religious Identity of Latinos in the United States.

David Goldston* is director of Government Affairs at the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) (@NRDC), a leading environmental group.  Goldston came to NRDC after more than 20 years on Capitol Hill working on environmental policy and science policy.  From 2001 through 2006, he was the Chief of Staff of the House Committee on Science.  He has written extensively on science policy, including as a monthly columnist for Nature, and has participated in numerous report-writing panels for the National Academies.  Goldston has an undergraduate degree from Cornell University in history and completed the course work for a Ph.D. in American history at the University of Pennsylvania.

Diane E. Griffin, MD, PhD is University Distinguished Service Professor of Molecular Microbiology and Immunology at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health (@JohnsHopkinsSPH) and Vice President of the US National Academy of Sciences.  She earned her BA in Biology at Augustana College in Rock Island, IL and her MD and PhD at Stanford University School of Medicine. Her research interests are in the area of pathogenesis of viral diseases with a particular focus on measles and alphavirus encephalitis. These studies address issues related to virulence and the role of immune responses in protection from infection and in clearance of infection. Her work has included evaluation of licensed and experimental vaccines for measles. She is past president of the American Society for Virology and the American Society for Microbiology.  Currently, she is Chair of the Viral Diseases Panel of the U.S.-Japan Cooperative Medical Sciences Program. She has received the Rudolf Virchow Medal (2010), Wallace Sterling Lifetime Alumni Achievement Award from Stanford University (2011) and the FASEB Excellence in Science Award (2015).

 James E. Grunig (@jgrunig1) is a professor emeritus in the Department of Communication at the University of Maryland College Park. He holds a Ph. D. in Mass Communication from the University of Wisconsin. He is the coauthor of five books and editor of a sixth. Grunig has written more than 250 other publications such as book chapters, journal articles, reports, and papers. His major research has been in public relations and science communication, including the nature of organization-public relationships (of which trust is a major component). He has won six major awards in public relations and the most prestigious lifetime award of the Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communication (AEJMC), the Paul J. Deutschmann Award for Excellence in Research. He was the founding coeditor of the Journal of Public Relations Research. He has been awarded honorary doctorates by universities in Peru, Romania, Turkey, and Canada.

Jo Handelsman is the Associate Director for Science at the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (@whitehouseOSTP), appointed by President Obama and confirmed by the Senate in June of 2014. Dr. Handelsman helps to advise President Obama on the implications of science for the Nation, ways in which science can inform U.S. policy, and on Federal efforts in support of scientific research. Prior to joining OSTP, Dr. Handelsman was the Howard Hughes Medical Institute Professor and Frederick Phineas Rose Professor in the Department of Molecular, Cellular and Developmental Biology at Yale University. She previously served on the University of Wisconsin-Madison faculty as a Professor in Plant Pathology from 1985 to 2009 and as Professor and Chair of the Department of Bacteriology from 2007 to 2009. In 2013, she served as President of the American Society for Microbiology. From 2002 to 2010, Dr. Handelsman was the co-founder and co-director of the Wisconsin Program for Scientific Teaching, the Yale Center for Scientific Teaching, and the National Academies Summer Institute on Undergraduate Education in Biology, programs focused on teaching principles and practices of evidence-based education to current and future faculty at colleges and universities nationwide. Dr. Handelsman is an expert in communication among bacteria that associate with soil, plants, and insects and helped pioneer the field of metagenomics, bridging agricultural and medical services. Handelsman is also recognized for her research on science education and women and minorities in science, and in 2011 received the Presidential Award for Excellence in Science Mentoring.   Dr. Handelsman also co-chaired the PCAST working group that developed the 2012 report, “Engage to Excel,” which contained recommendations to the President to strengthen STEM education to meet the workforce needs of the next decade in the United States. Dr. Handelsman received a B.S. from Cornell University and a Ph.D. in Molecular Biology from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

Scott Hensley (@scotthensley) has been writing and editing posts for Shots, Health News from NPR since the summer of 2009. Before joining NPR, he was the founding editor of The Wall Street Journal‘s Health Blog. Mr. Hensley was previously an editor in the paper’s New York Health and Science bureau. He initially joined the Journal in 2000 and covered health care and the pharmaceutical industry for seven years. He also wrote “Follow the Money,” an online column that looked at the health-care industry. His story about Pfizer Inc.’s failed attempt to develop an anti-aging pill was part of a series on soaring drug prices that won a New York Press Club award for business coverage in 2003. Previously, he wrote for Modern Healthcare, where he was New York bureau chief, and American Banker. Born in Texas, Mr. Hensley earned a bachelor’s degree in natural sciences from Johns Hopkins University and a master’s degree from Columbia University’s Graduate School of Journalism. He is a member of the Association of Health Care Journalists.

Rush D. Holt, Ph.D., became the 18th chief executive officer of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) (#AAAS) and executive publisher of the Science family of journals in February 2015. Over his long career, Dr. Holt has held positions as a teacher, scientist, administrator, and policymaker. Prior to coming to AAAS, Holt served for 16 years as a member of the U.S. House of Representatives, representing New Jersey’s 12th Congressional District. His legislative work earned him numerous accolades, including being named one of Scientific American magazine’s 50 National Visionaries Contributing to a Brighter Technological Future and a Champion of Science by the Science Coalition. He is also a past recipient of two of AAAS’s highest honors: the William D. Carey Lectureship Award (2005) and the Philip Hauge Abelson Award (2010). Holt is a Phi Beta Kappa graduate of Carleton College and he holds M.A. and Ph.D. degrees in physics from New York University.

Molly Jahn* is a Professor in the Laboratory of Genetics and Department of Agronomy at the University of Wisconsin-Madison (@UWMadAgronomy), and Special Advisor to the Chancellor and Provost for Sustainability Sciences. She has had a distinguished research career in plant genetics, genomics and plant breeding of vegetable crops focusing on molecular genetics of disease resistance and quality traits. Her research groups at UW Madison and Cornell University have produced crop varieties now grown commercially and for subsistence on six continents under approximately 60 active commercial licenses. She has also worked extensively in developing countries to link crop breeding with improved human nutrition and welfare. Her innovative approaches to inter-sector partnerships, engagement with emerging institutions, and integrated projects focused on impact and technology transfer have been highlighted in numerous studies and books. She has consulted widely in the private sector, and has served as an advisor for philanthropic interests, venture capital and finance, First Nations, and U.S and foreign governmental agencies in agriculture, food security, life and environmental sciences. She received the BA with distinction in biology from Swarthmore College and holds graduate degrees from MIT and Cornell University.

Kathleen Hall Jamieson is the Elizabeth Ware Packard Professor at the Annenberg School for Communication of the University of Pennsylvania and Director of its Annenberg Public Policy Center (@APPCPenn). Jamieson is also a fellow of the American Philosophical Society, the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, the American Academy of Political and Social Science, the International Communication Association and a Distinguished Scholar of the National Communication Association. Five of her sixteen single or co-authored books have received political science or communication awards. Additionally, The Obama Victory: How Media, Money and Message Shaped the 2008 Presidential Election (written with Kate Kenski and Bruce Hardy) received the 2010 American Publishers Association’s PROSE award as best book in government and politics. Jamieson has earned teaching awards at each of the three universities at which she has taught. In 2013, she keynoted the NAS Sackler Colloquium on the Science of Science Communication.

Marcia A. Kean, M.B.A., is Chairman, Strategic Initiatives, of Feinstein Kean Healthcare (@FKHealth), a leading strategy and communications firm dedicated to advancing innovation in the life sciences and healthcare.  Marcia has more than 35 years of biomedical and information technology industry experience, working alongside innovators in the private and public sectors.  Her clients have included Big Pharma; start-ups in biotech, device, genomics, informatics, personal health and clinical decision support; policy organizations; academic/medical centers; patient advocacy groups; and government institutes.  Marcia has consistently identified and helped drive adoption of new waves of technology that have transformative impact on healthcare. She was a leader in the emergence of the biotechnology industry in the late 1980s and 1990s, paving the way through patient and public education.   In 2003, Marcia founded the first Molecular Medicine communications practice in the United States, and was among an early-adopter group seeking to introduce these technologies to the world.  Currently, she serves as an advisor to an initiative seeking to shape policy and public education in the synthetic biology field.  Marcia holds an M.B.A from New York University and a B.A. from the University of California at Berkeley.

Barnett S. Kramer, M.D., M.P.H., is the Director of the Division of Cancer Prevention at the National Cancer Institute (@theNCI). He was Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of the National Cancer Institute from 1994 to 2012.  He serves as Chairman of the Physician Data Query (PDQ) Editorial Board on Screening and Prevention and is a member of the PDQ Treatment Editorial Board.  Dr. Kramer has served on the Cancer Prevention Committee of the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) and was the committee chairperson from 2006 to 2007.   Dr. Kramer received his medical degree from the University of Maryland Medical School, and completed his internship and residency in internal medicine at Barnes Hospital in St. Louis, Missouri.  He completed a medical oncology fellowship at the National Cancer Institute (U.S.).  He is board-certified in internal medicine and medical oncology, and has received a master’s degree in public health from Johns Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health.  Dr. Kramer has extensive experience in primary cancer prevention studies, as well as clinical screening trials of lung, ovarian, breast and prostate cancers.  He is an investigator and on the steering committee for two large cancer screening trials sponsored by the National Cancer Institute: the Prostate, Lung, Colorectal, Ovarian (PLCO) Trial; and the National Lung Screening Trial (NLST).  He has a strong interest in weighing and reporting the strength of medical evidence and created an annual Medicine in the Media Workshop to help working journalists develop methods of reporting medical evidence.

Tiffany Lohwater* (@tiffanylohwater) is Director of Meetings and Public Engagement at AAAS. A science communications and event professional, she is responsible for the AAAS Annual Meeting and the AAAS Center for Public Engagement with Science and Technology. The AAAS Annual Meeting is the predominant international scientific conference for scientists, engineers, policymakers, journalists, and others interested in the intersection of science, technology, and society. The AAAS Center for Public Engagement provides a vehicle for boosting public awareness and understanding of the nature of science and the work of scientists, while at the same time increasing public input into scientific research and policy agendas. Lohwater’s work encourages scientists to take a more personal and proactive interest in public engagement. She previously worked in research communications and public events at Johns Hopkins University and Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute.

George Matsumoto* (@george_mage) is a Senior Educational and Research Specialist at Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute (MBARI). At MBARI, Dr. Matsumoto oversees multiple education and outreach programs including internship, mentor, distance education, and seminar programs. He also develops and coordinates collaborations with outside organizations and the MBARI’s sister organization, the Monterey Bay Aquarium. Dr. Matsumoto’s research interests are in open ocean and deep sea communities; ecology and biogeography of open ocean and deep sea organisms; functional morphology, and natural history and behavior. Dr. Matsumoto served on the Digital Library for Earth System Education (DLESE) Steering Committee and the 2000 National Science Foundation’s Committee of Visitors for Geoscience and is currently serving as a national advisory board member for the Center for Microbial Oceanography: Research and Education (C-MORE), the Center for Coastal Margin Observation and Prediction (C-MOP), the Centers for Ocean Sciences Education Excellence (COSEE) as well as several regional nonprofit organizations. Dr. Matsumoto is currently serving on the National Research Council’s Ocean Studies Board, and has served on several National Academies committees including as chair of Research and Discoveries: The Revolution of Science through Scuba- A Symposium, and as a member of the Committee on the Review of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s Educaiton Program.  Dr. Matsumoto received in PhD from the University of California, Los Angeles.

Rose McDermott is the David and Mariana Fisher University Professor of International Relations at Brown University’s Watson Institute for International Relations (@WatsonInstitute) and a Fellow in the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.  She received her Ph.D. (Political Science) and M.A. (Experimental Social Psychology) from Stanford University and has taught at Cornell, UCSB  and Harvard.   She has held numerous fellowships, including the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study, the Olin Institute for Strategic Studies and the Women and Public Policy Program, all at Harvard University. She was a fellow at the Stanford Center for Advanced Studies in the Behavioral Sciences. She is the author of three books, a co-editor of two additional volumes, and author of over a hundred academic articles across a wide variety of disciplines encompassing topics such as experimentation, emotion and decision making, and the biological and genetic bases of political behavior.

Phyllis Pettit Nassi, MSW, Manager Special Populations, Huntsman Cancer Institute (@hunstmancancer), University of Utah and currently a Ph. D. student, works educating American Indian Alaska Natives about the importance of risk reduction, early detection, participation in clinical trials and cancer research, and understand the future e.g. targeted therapies, pharmacogenomics and immunotherapy.  Phyllis, enrolled in the Otoe-Missouri Tribe and is a member of the Cherokee Nation. Raised on the Navajo, Hopi and Zuni reservations, Phyllis works with research teams and national associations advocating for the importance of researchers and their staff to understand how complicated it’s going to be to get it right, and how difficult it will be for every researcher working with tribal nations if they get it wrong. Phyllis currently serves on the Patient Advocate, Health Disparities & Pharmacogenomics Committees, Alliance for Clinical Trials in Oncology; the Multicultural Advisory Committee & Advocates In Science, Susan G. Komen, is Co-Chair for the Cure Intercultural Cancer Council, Southwest and has served as a reviewer for the Patient Centered Outcomes Research Institute, Methods, Patient and Stakeholder Panel.

Ivan Oransky*(@ivanoranksy), MD, is co-founder of the MacArthur Foundation-funded Retraction Watch, and vice president and global editorial director of MedPage Today. He teaches medical journalism at New York University’s Science, Health, and Environmental Reporting Program, and is vice president of the Association of Health Care Journalists. In the past, Oransky has been executive editor of Reuters Health, managing editor, online, of Scientific American, and deputy editor of The Scientist. Oransky earned his bachelor’s degree at Harvard University, where he was executive editor of The Harvard Crimson, and earned his M.D. at the New York University of School of Medicine, where he holds an appointment as clinical assistant professor of medicine.

David Rejeski directs the Science and Technology Innovation Program (STIP) at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars (@TheWilsonCenter). The mission of STIP is to explore the scientific and technological frontier, stimulating discovery and bringing new tools to bear on public policy challenges that emerge as science advances. He is presently a Visiting Scholar at the Environmental Law Institute, was a Visiting Fellow at Yale University’s School of Forestry and Environmental Studies, and an adjunct affiliated staff member at RAND.   Between 1994 and 2000, he worked at the White House Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ) and the Office of Science and Technology (OSTP) on a variety of technology, R&D, and policy initiatives, including the development and implementation of the National Environmental Technology Strategy, the Greening of the White House, and the Education for Sustainability Initiative. Before moving to OSTP, he was head of the Future Studies Unit at the Environmental Protection Agency. He spent four years in Hamburg, Germany working for the Environmental Agency, Department of Public Health, and Department of Urban Renewal and, in the late 1970’s, founded and co-directed a non-profit involved in energy conservation and renewable energy technologies. He sits on the advisory boards of a number of organizations, including the Board on Global Science and Technology of the National Academy of Sciences, the expert panel advising DARPA’s ‘Living Foundries’ Program, NSF’s Advisory Committee on Environmental Research and Education; the NSF-funded Synthetic Biology Engineering Research Center (SynBERC); the external science advisory committee of the Center for Environmental Implications of Nanotechnology, the Committee on Science, Engineering and Public Policy of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS); the Center for Environmental Policy at American University; the National Council of Advisors for the Center for the Study of the Presidency; the Journal of Industrial Ecology; and Games for Change.  Between 2004 and 2009, he was a member of EPA’s Science Advisory Board and he has served on the EPA’s Board of Scientific Counselors.  He has graduate degrees in public administration and environmental design from Harvard University and Yale University and a degree in industrial design from the Rhode Island School of Design.

Erika Shugart (@ErikaShugart ) is the Director of Communications and Marketing Strategy at the American Society for Microbiology and Principal of Erika Shugart Consulting, LLC. For the last 16 years Erika has worked in the field of informal science education.  Between 2003 and 2013, she oversaw the development of new digital media exhibitions, online experiences and programs as Deputy Director of the Marian Koshland Science Museum of the National Academy of Sciences.  In this role, she managed the creation of several major exhibitions, including Life Lab, Earth Lab: Degrees of Change, Infectious Disease: Evolving Challenges to Human Health, Putting DNA to Work, and a virtual exhibition on Safe Drinking Water.  She also conceptualized and managed the museum’s online presence including its award-winning website. Prior to joining the museum staff, Erika directed the National Academy of Sciences’ Office on Public Understanding of Science, managing several projects including the article series Beyond Discovery. Erika began her career at the National Research Council as an intern with the Board on Biology. Erika also worked at the Office of Policy Analysis at the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, NIH. She received her Ph.D. in biology from the University of Virginia. Erika has been recognized as a leader in the field of informal science education. In 2010, she was elected as a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science for distinguished contributions and leadership in public understanding and engagement in science.  She was a Noyce Leadership Fellow from 2012 – 2013.  In 2007, the National Academy of Sciences awarded her with an Individual Distinguished Service Award and she shared Group Distinguished Service Awards in 2004 and 2011.

Liz Szabo (@LizSzabo)is USA TODAY medical reporter covering cancer, heart disease, pediatrics, women’s health, environmental health, and infectious disease, including AIDS. Her work has been honored by the National Press Club, the Association of Health Care Journalists, the National Headliner Award, the Aronson Award for Social Justice Journalism, Investigative Reporters and Editors, the Virginia Press Association, Campaign for Public Health Foundation. and others. She is also a whiz at social media, tweeting from @LizSzabo and @healthusatoday, and has been ranked as the “top influencer” on breast cancer in social media.Previously, Szabo worked for the Virginian-Pilot for seven years, covering medicine, religion and local news.

Mary Woolley* (@MaryWoolleyRA) is the president of Research!America, the nation’s largest not-for-profit, membership supported grassroots public education and advocacy alliance committed to making research for health a higher national priority. Woolley is an elected member of the Institute of Medicine and serves on its Governing Council. She is a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science and serves on the National Academy of Sciences Board on Life Sciences. She is a Founding Member of the Board of Associates of the Whitehead Institute for Biomedical Research and is a member of the visiting committee of the University of Chicago Medical Center, the National Council for Johns Hopkins Nursing, and serves on the External Advisory Board for Rice University’s Professional Science Master’s Degree program. Woolley has also served as president of the Association of Independent Research Institutes, as editor of the Journal of the Society of Research Administrators, as a reviewer for the National Institutes of Health and National Science Foundation, and as a consultant to several research organizations. She has a 30-year publication history on science advocacy and research related topics, and is a sought-after speaker, often interviewed by science, news, and policy journalists. She holds an honorary doctoral degree from the Northeast Ohio Medical University (NEOMED).