Briefings

Dear Colleagues, 

I am pleased to include another issue of RFS Briefings with some timely and encouraging updates on women in science.

Our annual year-end meeting is almost here

We are in the process of taping an impressive agenda which will showcase amazing leaders who you may not have heard from! We will again present an impressive panel of prestigious Award winners in science, and a panel to highlight the unique path of scientists From PhD to CEO. As in the past, you will also want to hear first-hand from major new appointments in the Federal government and the White House. We will also present a fascinating look back at Lost Women of Science.

These productions will be shared through broadcast on November 30th and December 1st, 12:00a.m. - 3:00p.m. (EST).

A link for registration will be posted soon. We know you will want to hear these presentations from prestigious scholars, authors, award winners, government leaders from NCI, ARPA-H, and the FDA. and a scientist's very personal story of insight and recovery.

Please continue to share important news and opportunities with us so that we may share it with you, and others who are committed to supporting the careers of exceptional women in science. 

Stay safe and sound

Karla Shepard Rubinger
Executive Director
Rosalind Franklin Society
www.rosalindfranklinsociety.org
 

M.I.T. Names a Duke Provost as Its New President.

M.I.T. announced a new president, Sally Kornbluth, a cell biologist and provost at Duke University. She will be the second female president of the university, and will join a long list of women in its top leadership ranks. The provost, chancellor, dean of science and chair of the M.I.T. Corporation, the school’s governing body, are all women. Read more. (Image: Jared Lazarus, Duke University, edited by MIT News)

The University of North Texas Health Science Center at Fort Worth confirms Dr. Sylvia Trent-Adams as new president.

Dr. Sylvia Trent-Adams was the first Black woman to serve as Deputy Surgeon General of the U.S. Public Health Service Commissioned Corps., then the first Black woman to rise to the level of Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary for Health. “Dr. Sylvia Trent-Adams is an extraordinarily accomplished academic health care leader,” said Dr. Michael R. Williams, chancellor of the UNT System. Read more.

She’s made 1,750 Wikipedia bios for female scientists who haven’t gotten their due.

Jess Wade, 33, a British physicist, spends her spare time writing Wikipedia biographies for women and minority scientists. “Wikipedia is a really powerful way to give credit to people who, for a long time, have been written out of history,” she said. “Not only do we not have enough women in science, but we aren’t doing enough to celebrate the ones we have.” Read more. (Image: Jess Wade)

The Vilcek Foundation announces the recipients of the 2023 Vilcek Foundation Prizes.

Biyu J. He receives the Vilcek Prize for Creative Promise in Biomedical Science for her leadership in the field of cognitive neuroscience, and for her groundbreaking discoveries on the biological bases of perceptual cognition and subjective experience. Read more.

Women researchers are cited less than men. Here’s why—and what can be done about it.
Women’s scientific contributions are often undervalued and cited less often than those of their male counterparts, including in neuroscience, astronomy, medicine—and, according to two new studies, physics. How can researchers and institutions address gender inequality in academia? Read more.

Obstetrics “giant” Beryl Benacerraf dies at 73.
Beryl Benacerraf, best known for discovering that congenital abnormalities such as Down syndrome could be diagnosed through prenatal ultrasound, died October 1 of late-stage cancer. She was a renowned radiologist and professor at Brigham and Women’s Hospital. Read more.

On the lookout for viruses that could leap from animals into humans.
Sara Sawyer, a virologist at the BioFrontiers Institute of the University of Colorado, Boulder, spoke to Nature about what a virus must do to make the leap between species, and describes a worrying discovery her laboratory has made regarding a future threat. Read more.

A journey of joy and uncertainty in physics.
This article is part of a series of essays written by Black physicists and co-published with Physics Today as part of #BlackInPhysics week 2022, an event dedicated to celebrating Black physicists and their contributions to the scientific community. Read more. 


Marianna Limas, Social Media Manager
Nilda Rivera, Partnership and Events Manager

 

Dear Colleagues, 

I am pleased to include another issue of RFS Briefings with some timely and encouraging updates on women in science.

Please continue to share important news and opportunities with us so that we may share it with you, and others who are committed to supporting the careers of exceptional women in science. 

Stay safe and sound

Karla Shepard Rubinger
Executive Director
Rosalind Franklin Society
www.rosalindfranklinsociety.org
 

Stanford’s Carolyn Bertozzi wins Nobel in chemistry.

Stanford chemist Carolyn Bertozzi was awarded the Nobel Prize in chemistry for her development of bioorthogonal reactions, which allow scientists to explore cells and track biological processes without disrupting the normal chemistry of the cell. “In pioneering the field of bioorthogonal chemistry, Carolyn invented a new way of studying biomolecular processes, one that has helped scientists around the world gain deeper understanding of chemical reactions in living systems. Her work has had remarkable real-world impact, unleashing new diagnostic and therapeutic approaches to treat disease. Carolyn is so deserving of this honor, and all of us at Stanford are tremendously proud to call her one of our own,” said Stanford President Marc Tessier-Lavigne. Read more. (Image: Nobel Prize on Twitter)

5 women who should have won a Nobel Prize.
“Two decades ago it would be rare that I would find a woman, for example, to designate as a citation laureate, but as we move forward in time, we find there are more women… in the top ranks of researchers,” said David Pendlebury, a senior analyst at Clarivate, ahead of the 2022 Nobel Prize announcement. There’s no shortage of worthy female candidates to be the next science laureates. Here are five female scientists and the life-changing discoveries they have made. Read more.

Overlooked no more: Maria Orosa, inventor of banana ketchup.
Maria Orosa, a food scientist and nationalist, sought to make the Philippines less dependent on imported food. Banana ketchup was one result. First mass-produced in 1942, banana ketchup has become so popular that Heinz, arguably the king of tomato ketchup, now makes its own version. Heinz introduced it in 2019, saying it was doing so “in honor of Maria Orosa” Read more.

Monica Bertagnolli begins work as 16th director of the National Cancer Institute.

Monica M. Bertagnolli, M.D., started as the 16th director of the National Cancer Institute (NCI), part of the National Institutes of Health (NIH). She is the first woman to hold the position of NCI director. Dr. Bertagnolli succeeds Norman E. Sharpless, M.D., who stepped down as director in April 2022. Douglas R. Lowy, M.D., has been NCI’s acting director since April 30, 2022. Read more. 

Dr. Audrey Evans, cancer specialist who gave Families a home, dies at 97.
Dr. Audrey E. Evans, a pediatric oncologist in Philadelphia who, seeing that her out-of-town patients’ families sometimes struggled to find affordable accommodations when their children needed extended care helped create the first Ronald McDonald House, a concept that has blossomed into a worldwide network, died last week at her home in Philadelphia. She was 97. Read more.

World’s largest science prize for discovering a new mechanism of cellular organization.
Anthony Hyman, the managing director of the Max Planck Institute of Molecular Cell Biology and Genetics (MPI-CBG), and Clifford Brangwynne, Professor of Chemical and Biological Engineering at Princeton University and Howard Hughes Medical Institute, have been honored with one of the three 2023 Breakthrough Prizes in Life Sciences. Anthony Hyman was a speaker at RFS. Following his wife’s gruesome murder at a conference, his presentation addressed the challenges for women and the responsibility of leaders in the field to address this. Read more.

Feinstein Institutes’ Betty Diamond receives Women in Medicine and Science Leadership Award.
The award, conferred by Association of American Medical Colleges, recognizes outstanding individual and organizational contributions to advancing women leaders in academic medicine and science. Read more.

Research!America to recognize Dr. Tabak and other leaders in medical and health research.
Three distinguished women in science and medicine among those honored by Research!America. The award honors individuals who show outstanding commitment to sustaining the nation’s world-class leadership in medical and health research. Read more.

ASU professor to study new genome editing tools with NIH Innovator Award.

Assistant Professor Audrey Lapinaite from Arizona State University’s School of Molecular Sciences and the Biodesign Institute’s ASU-Banner Neurodegenerative Disease Research Center has been awarded a prestigious National Institutes of Health (NIH) Director’s New Innovator Award. The award specifically “supports exceptionally creative early-career investigators who propose innovative, high-impact projects,” targeting investigators within 10 years of completing their doctoral degree or postdoctoral training. Read more.

UAB neuroscientist earns new innovator award from NIH.
University of Alabama at Birmingham neuroscientist Summer Thyme, Ph.D., is a recipient of the Director’s New Innovator award from the National Institutes of Health. The award is part of the NIH High-Risk, High-Reward Research program, supported by the Common Fund, which has bestowed 103 new research grants to support highly innovative scientists who propose visionary and broadly impactful, meritorious behavioral and biomedical research projects. Read more.

Can you #FindThatLizard? One scientist is tapping the tools of social media to transform her field.

Scientists of color are disrupting the rules of historically colonial institutions in STEM and academia. For Earyn McGee, that means engaging with her public through games. Earyn is a herpetologist and the creator of #FindThatLizard, and she looks for lizards in Inglewood’s Kenneth Hahn park. Read more. (Image: Wikipedia)

Call for Nominations: Standing Committee on Aerospace Medicine and the Medicine of Extreme Environments.
The Standing Committee on Aerospace Medicine and the Medicine of Extreme Environments, at the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine, is sponsored by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA). The standing committee coordinates with NASA’s Office of the Chief Health and Medical Officer to become informed of existing conditions and emerging issues related to medical care in space and define prospective activities (such as studies or analysis of medical needs and/or approaches to addressing those needs) to be conducted at the National Academies. Read more.

Jessica Wade makes Wikipedia bios for unknown women scientists.
London-based physicist Jessica Wade has become something of a phenomenon herself in her very personal campaign to bring more girls to study and work in STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics). Wade has written more than 1,600 Wikipedia entries for long-ignored women scientists, and she has firm beliefs on ideas on how to support girls interested in the field. Read more.

MacArthur Foundation announces 25 new ‘Genius’ grant winners.
The 2022 awards are going to artists, activists, scholars, scientists and others who have shown “exceptional creativity.” The grants are a bit bigger than before: $800,000 over five years. The 2022 MacArthur fellows include a sociologist working to understand what drives people to own guns; an astrodynamicist trying to manage “space traffic” and ensure that satellites don’t crash into each other in Earth’s orbit. Read more.

Call for Nominations.
The Gruber Foundation invites nominations on behalf of individuals whose achievements in Cosmology, Genetics, or Neuroscience would make them suitable candidates for recognition through the 2023 Gruber International Prize Program. Each prize, which is accompanied by a $500,000 unrestricted monetary award, is designed both to recognize groundbreaking work in each field and to inspire additional efforts that effect fundamental shifts in knowledge and culture. Read more. 


Marianna Limas, Social Media Manager
Nilda Rivera, Partnership and Events Manager

 
 

Dear Colleagues, 

I am pleased to include another issue of RFS Briefings with some timely and encouraging updates on women in science.

Please continue to share important news and opportunities with us so that we may share it with you, and others who are committed to supporting the careers of exceptional women in science. 

Stay safe and sound

Karla Shepard Rubinger
Executive Director
Rosalind Franklin Society
www.rosalindfranklinsociety.org
 

NOAA’s new Chief Scientist on preparing for climate’s biggest perils.

Sarah Kapnick is the third woman in NOAA’s history to be appointed to the role of chief scientist. “I have always been really interested in climate – and climate risk. My undergraduate degree was in theoretical mathematics with a certificate in finance and research on geophysical fluid dynamics,” says Sarah. Read more. (Credit: NOAA)


The Science & Technology Action Committee (STAC) released a statement applauding the Senate’s confirmation of Dr. Arati Prabhakar’s nomination as the Director of the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP).

“Dr. Arati Prabhakar’s bipartisan confirmation as OSTP Director is a victory for the advancement of science, technology, and innovation in the United States. This pivotal position requires working across the federal government in these policy areas to drive economic growth, create jobs, and address critical threats to Americans’ public health and wellbeing. Dr. Prabhakar has the unique opportunity to unleash U.S. innovation and reassert America’s global leadership in tackling the extraordinary threats society faces today. She is the ideal scientist and leader for this crucial role.” Read more. (Image: Wikipedia)

Heinz Family Foundation announces $1.5 million in awards.
The Heinz Family Foundation announced the recipients of the 27th Heinz Awards, which will present unrestricted cash awards totaling $1.5 million to seven Americans for outstanding contributions in the categories of the Arts, the Economy and the Environment. Among the recipients is Anne C. Evens, CEO of Elevate, who has dedicated her life’s work to transforming energy efficiency improvements in affordable housing and to the mission of Elevate, which works to ensure that everyone has equal access to clean and affordable heat, power and water in their homes and communities. Read more.

How the US can harness the possibilities of biotechnology.
To accelerate the transformation of biotechnology advancements into solutions for real world problems, the Biden-Harris administration has launched the Biotechnology and Biomanufacturing Initiative through a new executive order, which has the potential to improve the everyday lives of all people. Read more.

Workforce Diversity Initiatives in the CHIPS and Science Act.
The new CHIPS and Science Act includes a variety of provisions aimed at promoting diversity, equity, and inclusion within the STEM workforce through grant support and workforce research, and by instituting new requirements for data collection and ethical research conduct. Read more. 

Apply now for the 2023 Blavatnik National Awards for Young Scientists. 
The Blavatnik National Awards recognize exceptional individuals and their accomplishments in the areas of Life Sciences, Physical Sciences & Engineering, and Chemistry. One Blavatnik National Awards Laureate will be selected from each disciplinary category and will receive $250,000 in unrestricted funds. Read more.

The next round of Jane Coffin Childs Postdoctoral Fellowships opens on October 3rd, 2022 with a deadline of noon EST on February 1st, 2023. 
Please encourage creative and talented postdocs (or soon to be postdocs) in your network to apply. The Jane Coffin Childs Memorial Fund for Medical Research (JCC Fund) was established by the Childs Family in 1937, to honor the memory of Jane Coffin Childs who died of cancer in 1936. Read more.

Season 3 of the Lost Women of Science podcast launches September 22nd

Yvonne Y. Clark, known as YY throughout her career, has also been nicknamed “The First Lady of Engineering,” because of her groundbreaking achievements as a Black female mechanical engineer. Season 3 of Lost Women of Science traces her trajectory, from her unconventional childhood interest in fixing appliances to civil rights breakthroughs in the segregated South; from her trailblazing role at historically Black colleges and universities to her work at NASA. What can YY teach us about what it means to be the first in a scientific field, especially as a Black woman in America? Read more. (Image: Wikipedia)

NSF launches entrepreneurial fellowships for engineers and scientists.
The U.S. National Science Foundation announced a new $20 million investment in Entrepreneurial Fellowships through a multi-year cooperative agreement with Activate. Read more.

Dr. Emmanuelle Charpentier: ‘We all need to ask ourselves what kind of world we want to live in’ 
In early September, Charpentier traveled to Yerevan, Armenia to be one of the main speakers at the Starmus VI Festival. In her interview with EL PAÍS, the scientist explains that she is still focused on the same goal as she was years ago: looking for new forms of gene editing to combat antibiotic-resistant infections. Read more. 

COVID-19 dashboard creator Lauren Gardner wins Lasker-Bloomberg Public Service Award.

Lauren Gardner, a professor of civil and systems engineering at Johns Hopkins University's Whiting School of Engineering, has won the 2022 Lasker-Bloomberg Public Service Award, America's top biomedical research prize. Read more. (Image: Will Kirk, JHU)

Parker to lead Artificial Intelligence Research and Education Initiative at UT.
Lynne Parker is returning to the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, after completing a four-year post as deputy United States chief technology officer and director of the National Artificial Intelligence Initiative Office within the White House. Read more.

Cleveland Clinic researchers discover new signal for triggering human immune response.
Michaela Gack and her team at the Cleveland Clinic have discovered a new "priming signal" that triggers immune system responses to infection. Born in Germany, Gack received a Vilcek Prize for Creative Promise in 2017. Read more.

Winners of 2023 Breakthrough Prize announced.
The Breakthrough Prize Foundation has announced the winners of the 2023 Breakthrough Prizes in life sciences, fundamental physics, and mathematics. But no women for the 3 key prizes… Read more.


Marianna Limas, Social Media Manager
Nilda Rivera, Partnership and Events Manager

 

Dear Colleagues, 

I am pleased to include another issue of RFS Briefings with some timely and encouraging updates on women in science.

Please continue to share important news and opportunities with us so that we may share it with you, and others who are committed to supporting the careers of exceptional women in science. 

Stay safe and sound

Karla Shepard Rubinger
Executive Director
Rosalind Franklin Society
www.rosalindfranklinsociety.org
 


The State of Biotech

Join the Editors of GEN and an all-star line-up of speakers and presenters as they analyze the state of biotechnology circa 2022 – a celebration of innovation, emerging technologies, and clinical successes and an in-depth appraisal of the headwinds and challenges facing the industry. Read more.

Gina McCarthy, Biden’s top climate adviser, to step down.

Gina McCarthy, President Biden’s top climate adviser, left her job on September 16, just weeks after the president signed a landmark climate bill to slow the pace of global warming. Gina McCarthy previously served as E.P.A. administrator in the Obama administration and had environmental roles under Republican governors. Read more. (Image: Wikipedia) 

CRISPR pioneer Jennifer Doudna receives inaugural Kimberly Prize.
Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine and the Simpson Querrey Institute for Epigenetics announced that CRISPR pioneer and Nobel Laureate Jennifer Doudna is the recipient of the inaugural $250,000 Kimberly Prize in Biochemistry and Molecular Genetics. Doudna was selected for her fundamental biochemical studies providing molecular insight into the function of CRISPR/Cas9 systems as tools for genome editing and the application of her work to biology and medicine. RFS featured an engaging conversation last year with her which you can access hereRead more. 

Athene Donald: why even great physicists like her suffer from impostor syndrome.

Dame Athene Donald recently admitted to suffering from impostor syndrome. “Yes, she had already established her physics credentials by the time I worked with her, but she was taking a massive risk as well by moving into uncharted, interdisciplinary waters. Being one of just a handful of women in what was then a highly male dominated department at the time didn’t help her confidence either,” writes Matin Durrani, editor-in-chief of Physics World. Read more. (Image by Matin Durrani) 

Billion-dollar US health agency gets new chief — but its direction remains in limbo.

US President Joe Biden has selected Renee Wegrzyn, a biologist and former government scientist, as the inaugural director of the Advanced Research Projects Agency for Health (ARPA-H), an agency created by his administration to find innovative solutions to biomedical problems. “Renee possesses a rare combination of scientific expertise, practical experience and interpersonal skills that set her apart as a leader,” says Jennifer Doudna, who has served on a bioengineering advisory board with Wegrzyn. Read more. Image Credit: Ginkgo Bioworks. 

Susan L. Solomon, crusader for stem cell research, dies at 71.
Susan L. Solomon, whose frustration over lags in finding a cure for her teenage son’s Type 1 diabetes prompted her to establish what became a leading independent stem cell research laboratory, died on Sept. 8 at her home in Amagansett, N.Y. She was 71. Read more. 

Gender pay gap hits university faculty.
More women scientists work as professors today than at any time in history. But they’re still underpaid relative to their male colleagues with similar publication records, according to a study of more than 2300 science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) faculty members. The findings are “concerning,” says Bruce Weinberg, a professor of economics at Ohio State University, Columbus. Read more. 

Behavioral scientists have discovered the secret recipe for team success—gender diversity.
The study’s authors found that mixed-gender teams produced more novel and innovative work than all-women or all-men teams of comparable size, on average. Read more.

Men outnumber women by more than 2 to 1 in US federal science jobs.
Women hold just 29% of the 335,412 jobs in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) in the US federal government, according to a report published by the US Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC). The report is based on data from 2019. The gender disparity is even greater in supervisory and leadership roles, in which women occupy just 26% of positions. Read more. 

“How we boosted the number of female faculty members at our institution”
Despite a small increase in the number of women studying STEM subjects as undergraduates or postgraduates in Australia, female enrolment in these fields was only 36% of the total in 2019. Female representation in science and engineering, especially at the senior level, is still appallingly low. Read more. 

To encourage more scientists to translate their research, BioInnovation Institute (BII) and Science award the BII & Science Prize for Innovation.
Three winners will have their essays published in Science and will be invited into BII’s entrepreneurial ecosystem. In addition, the Grand Prize winner will receive a prize of USD 25,000 and each runner-up will receive USD 10,000 at a grand award ceremony in Copenhagen, Denmark. Read more. 


Marianna Limas, Social Media Manager
Nilda Rivera, Partnership and Events Manager

 
 

Dear Colleagues, 

I am pleased to include another issue of RFS Briefings with some timely and encouraging updates on women in science.

Please continue to share important news and opportunities with us so that we may share it with you, and others who are committed to supporting the careers of exceptional women in science. 

Stay safe and sound

Karla Shepard Rubinger
Executive Director
Rosalind Franklin Society
www.rosalindfranklinsociety.org
 


The State of Biotech.

Join the Editors of GEN and an all-star line-up of speakers and presenters as they analyze the state of biotechnology circa 2022 – a celebration of innovation, emerging technologies, and clinical successes and an in-depth appraisal of the headwinds and challenges facing the industry. You may also access our recent interview with her and GEN editors here.  Read more.

For Twist Bioscience CEO Emily Leproust, it’s ‘go big or go home’

Emily Leproust, CEO and founder of Twist Bioscience, is passionate about mentoring the next generation of young aspiring entrepreneurs. “It’s extremely satisfying and people did it for me,” Leproust said. “There’s a big myth that you can’t schedule innovation, but you can,” Leproust said. “If you put a line in the sand, hire the best people, encourage them, give them all the tools they need, reward them and create the sense that with their work, we’re going to save the world, they can do it. It’s amazing.” Image: LiPo Ching | San Francisco Business Times. You may also view her recent RFS presentation hereRead more.

Caroline Juang: Blending art, science, and outreach.

Caroline Juang is a PhD student at Columbia University who uses satellite data and other techniques to study climate hazards. She is also an artist and a STEM promoter. Although she still loves drawing cats and horror comics, lately she’s been centering Asian female astronauts in her artwork. Caroline hopes that by doing so, she can create sources of inspiration for others that she didn’t see as she was trying to imagine herself as a scientist while growing up. Read more.

25 early career scientists become HHMI Hanna Gray Fellows.

Through the Hanna H. Gray Fellows Program and related efforts, HHMI seeks to increase diversity in biomedical science by recruiting and retaining individuals from groups currently underrepresented in the life sciences and by creating inclusive environments in which all scientists can thrive. Read more.

Pfizer teams with historically Black university for new vaccine public health doctorate program.
Monica Ochapa is pursuing a doctorate of public health at the historically black university Morgan State. Beginning next week, Ochapa and her DrPH fellow Nguhemen Tingir will begin a two-year program that aims to create a path for more minority practitioners as leaders in vaccine medical development and translate research and analysis into real-world health solutions. Read more.

The case for gender-diverse research teams.
Study finds that male-female research teams produce more innovative, impactful research than all-male or all-female teams, and the more gender-balanced the diverse teams are, the better. Read more.

Novartis appoints Fiona Marshall, Ph.D., President of the Novartis Institutes for BioMedical Research as Jay Bradner, M.D., steps down from the Executive Committee of Novartis
Fiona Marshall said: “I am very excited to join Novartis and lead the discovery teams who are renowned for their collaborative research and use of cutting-edge technologies. I look forward to working with them, colleagues across Novartis and our partners across the biopharma ecosystem to accelerate the translation of scientific discoveries into breakthrough medicines that address critical areas of unmet need for patients.” Read more.

Out of the COVID storm emerges a winner in Eureka Prize 2022.

Professor Raina MacIntyre, winner of Eureka Prize for Leadership in Innovation and Science, said: “The pandemic has seen a rise in disinformation and an anti-science agenda. So when you are trying to stick to the science, speaking truth to power, it’s very very difficult when everyone else is pushing a different agenda.” (Image: Eureka) Read more.


Marianna Limas, Social Media Manager
Nilda Rivera, Partnership and Events Manager

 
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