Scientist of the Month

The AWIS Chicago “Scientist of the Month” is an area scientist who promotes the advancement of women in the fields of science, technology and engineering (STEM). This monthly series was launched in 2009 and resurrected in 2010 with new contributers.

Nominees to be profiled in this series should be a scientist who has had an impact on your life or career, both past and present, or whom you believe is worthy of recognition for their research or contributions to their institution. The nominee does not need to be an AWIS member, does not need to be a woman, and can be a mentor, friend or colleague. There is no deadline for this nomination process and nominations submitted by the 15th of each month will be profiled the following month. Email awiscommunications@gmail.com with your nominations.

September SOTM: Melody Swartz Wednesday, 6 September 2017

by Shi En Kim I confess that writing about Melody Swartz is a somewhat intimidating task. The world sees her as an Arnold and Mabel Beckman Young Investigator Award recipient, a winner of the National Science Foundation Early Career Award, and one of the Brilliant 10 named by Popular Science in 2006. There have already […]

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August SOTM: Nancy Schwartz Monday, 31 July 2017

by Aurelie Desgardin Dr. Nancy Schwartz often sits quietly, listening to scientists of all levels as though she is no different from the others in the room. Humility, a characteristic often attributed to womanhood, is partially why she is so successful. She listens, processes information, thinks about what to say so no word is left […]

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July SOTM: Sui Huang Wednesday, 5 July 2017

by Danielle Fanslow Dr. Sui Huang’s role model is Barbara McClintock, the Nobel Laureate who discovered transposable elements. In many ways, the two scientists are alike. Sui, like McClintock, has a fierce love and curiosity for science. She will often run into my lab with a grin on her face exclaiming about the latest piece […]

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June SOTM: Jian Cao Monday, 19 June 2017

by Puikei Cheng If you’re reading this article, whether on a screen or in print, you are using a product of manufacturing. Manufacturing converts raw materials into consumer goods—and due to mass production, more consumer goods are manufactured than ever before. While mass production is cheap, there is growing demand for products that are complex, one-of-a-kind, […]

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March SOTM: Jocelyn Malamy Wednesday, 1 March 2017

by Ittai Eres I still remember the first time I encountered Dr. Jocelyn Malamy, Associate Professor in the Department of Molecular Genetics and Cell Biology at the University of Chicago. She was giving the final set of lectures in one of the toughest classes I took my first year of graduate school. Immediately, I was struck […]

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February SOTM: Laura Thorp Friday, 10 February 2017

by Brittany M. Wilson Dr. Laura Thorp, Physical Therapist turned Anatomist and now mom of four boys under the age of 5, is highly regarded as an educator by her students. In fact, she has been awarded on several occasions for Excellence in Teaching and having been one of her students, I can personally endorse […]

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January SOTM: Julia Kalow Monday, 2 January 2017

by Emma Vander Ende If you pause and consider your surroundings, you will find that a type of molecule, called a polymer, surrounds you. Polymers are large molecules that are made up of smaller molecules, called monomers. Monomers link together to form a polymer much in the same way that a necklace is made up of […]

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December SOTM: Anna Spagnoli Thursday, 1 December 2016

by Brittany M. Wilson “Perseverance is something that pays back,” Dr. Anna Spagnoli told me a little after noon on a Monday in Chicago. Dr. Spagnoli currently holds the positions of Professor of Pediatrics and Women’s Board Chair of Pediatrics at Rush Children’s Hospital at Rush University Medical Center. Dr. Spagnoli seemed particularly busy as […]

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October SOTM: Christiane Carney Saturday, 1 October 2016

by Liz Bajema If you find Christiane Carney on a typical day, she’s likely to be training medical practitioners, brushing up on scientific literature, or interacting with key opinion leaders in women’s health. Christiane is a medical science liaison (MSL), an increasingly popular profession among PhD scientists. MSLs typically work for pharmaceutical companies, acting as […]

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June SOTM: Kelly Fahrbach Thursday, 2 June 2016

By Katarina Kotnik Halavaty, PhD For more than a decade Kelly Fahrbach successfully paved her biomedical research career in academic settings – all went well, but something was missing. At the time, Kelly was a young research assistant professor and admitted that she needed more variety, more dynamic in her everyday schedule, which pushed her […]

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