Dear Colleagues, 

Happy Women's History Month! 

In recognition of Women’s History Month, we are excited to feature a new initiative highlighting women in science: Lost Women of Science. It’s mission is to raise awareness of the pivotal role women have played in scientific discoveries and innovations, and to promote interest in STEM education and careers.

The founders, Katie Hafner and Amy Scharf, bring incredible experience, substance and curiosity. Katie is an accomplished writer, healthcare and technology reporter for the New York Times, and an Executive Producer for the new podcast series. Amy is a bioethicist at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, also an Executive Producer for Lost Women of Science.       

“For every Rosalind Franklin, Hedy Lamar, or Katherine Johnson whose story has been told, there are dozens more whose stories remain untold to the public at large, or even to  contemporaries in their field…We believe it is imperative -now more than ever- to tell the stories of women who have shifted our understanding of the world around us but  have been lost to history.”

Learn more about Lost Women of Science from the founders as they are interviewed by Julianna LeMieux, senior science writer at Genetic Engineering & Biotechnology News. Available here.

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


2022 Trailblazer Prize for Clinician-Scientists by The Foundation for the National Institutes of Health.
The Foundation for the National Institutes of Health invites your nomination for the 2022 Trailblazer Prize for Clinician-Scientists! This prize recognizes the contributions of early career clinician-scientists whose work has the potential to innovate or has led to innovations in patient care. Read more.

Girls need more moms as STEM role models.
“Seeing my mother’s hard work and success as a physician, I dreamed of being an engineer when I was in high school. I was inspired by the success of my family members who are well-recognized and decorated for their research in the field of medicine,” writes Bhuvan Mittal. Read more.

How supposedly scientific arguments for the inferiority of women support gender discrimination.
Throughout the history of science, well-established theories supposedly explained why women are inferior to men and thus why it is justifiable to exclude them from activities that are traditionally regarded as masculine, including scientific practice itself, writes Vanessa Seifert, a researcher in the philosophy of chemistry. Read more.

How ‘Spam’ helped women in STEM to top Colombian Twitter for days.

Andrea Guzman-Mesa, a PhD candidate in Astrophysics at the University of Bern, Switzerland, wanted to use a hashtag for a good cause: overflow Twitter with female Colombian scientists and their contributions to science as a celebration of the UN International Day of Girls and Women in Science." Over the course of three days, that's what happened: women in STEM from the Colombian academic diaspora all over the world, Colombians based inside the country and other Latin American scientists all posted photos of themselves and their work, in fields from astronomy to biodiversity to geology. Read more.

Female scientists in Africa are changing the face of their continent.

Female scientists in Africa are entrepreneurial and resourceful. They are finding innovative solutions to problems that affect their communities, and many are actively seeking to engage others in their work. For example, Chemist Veronica Okello (pictured above) at Machakos University in Kenya is urging younger researchers to be less timid, air their views and approach professors for professional opportunities. Image Credit: Esther Sweeney for Nature. Read more.

Mikaela Shiffrin stumbled. What happens next matters more.
Olympics 2022 may be over, but the lessons we can learn from it aren’t going away. Thanks Sian Beilock⁩ President of Bernard College in N.Y., for reminding us to be kind to ourselves. “…remember to play your whole movie — not just the clip of your latest stumble on repeat.” Read more.

How these four women have made their mark in STEM.
OLAY is highlighting four remarkable women in STEM: 1) Raven Baxter, Ph.D., molecular biologist and STEM educator, past RFS speaker and on RFS Advisory Board; 2) Emily Calandrelli, executive producer of Fox's Xploration Outer Space and Netflix's Emily's Wonder Lab; 3) Keiana Cavé, entrepreneur and scientist, 4) Estefannie, software engineer. Here, they share their stories, passions, and insights into working in STEM. Read more.

Iwasaki is named a Sterling Professor.
Akiko Iwasaki, PhD, (a past RFS speaker) has been appointed Sterling Professor of Immunobiology and of Molecular, Cellular & Developmental Biology, effective immediately. A Sterling Professorship is considered the highest academic honor a Yale professor can receive! Read more. She was an impressive speaker at the RFS conference and you can view it here. 

The most definitive accounting of leaders and influencers in the life sciences.
There’s never been a better time to recognize standout individuals in health, medicine, and science. And although there are countless contenders to choose from, STAT selected just 46 — an homage to the number of chromosomes in human DNA. Read more.

Pioneering cancer researcher encourages Black students to study sciences.

Juliet Daniel came to Canada from Barbados in 1983 to study medicine, but decided to pursue cancer research after a personal tragedy. She now studies cancers that disproportionately affect Black women and is pushing for more diversity in STEM fields. (McMaster University). Read more.

Request for Information (RFI): Input on Clinical Whole Genome Sequencing for Low and Middle Income Communities.
If you were going to offer clinical Whole Genome Sequencing to the undiagnosed the world over, what would you want to build into the program? Tell the Genetic Alliance in response to their request for information. Read more. Led by Sharon Terry CEO, who was a past speaker at the 2014 RFS Board Meeting and you can watch it here.

Marie Maynard Daly was a trailblazing biochemist, but her full story may be lost.
Marie Maynard Daly is known as the first African American woman to receive a Ph.D. in chemistry, earned in 1947 from Columbia University. What we know about Daly comes primarily from her record of scientific publications. While working with biochemists Alfred Mirsky and Vincent Allfrey at Rockefeller Institute in New York City in the early 1950s, Daly found direct experimental evidence that protein synthesis requires RNA. Read more.

Caltech names Laurie Leshin director of JPL.

Laurie Leshin, president of Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI), has been appointed director of the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) and vice president of Caltech. Leshin will formally assume her position on May 16, 2022. The distinguished geochemist and space scientist brings more than 20 years of leadership experience in academic and government service to JPL.
Read more. Photo credit: Photo Courtesy Worcester Polytechnic Institute.

Five women scholars awarded the Wolf Prize.
Congratulations to Pamela Ronald, Carolyn R. Bertozzi, Bonnie Bassler (an RFS board member), Anne L’Huillier, and Elizabeth Diller for receiving The Wolf Prize, awarded by the Wolf Foundation of Israel to outstanding scientists and artists from around the world for achievements in the interest of humankind and friendly relations amongst peoples. Read more.

Whitehead Institute director Ruth Lehmann receives the 2022 Gruber Genetics Prize.

Whitehead Institute Director Ruth Lehmann (an RFS board member) has been awarded the 2022 Gruber Genetics Prize – one of the most prestigious recognitions in the field of genetics. Working primarily with the fruit fly
Drosophila melanogaster, Lehmann made landmark discoveries regarding the composition, assembly and function of germplasm within the embryo. Her research has contributed to the first genetic framework for the specification of germ cell fate in any organism. Read more. Photo Credit: Gretchen Ertl/Whitehead Institute.

Dr. Julie Gerberding named Chief Executive Officer of the Foundation for the National Institutes of Health.
A leading voice for patient safety and empowerment, Dr. Gerberding has created programs addressing antimicrobial resistance, infection prevention, and medical error reduction in healthcare settings. Her distinguished career has earned her global recognition and myriad awards. Read more.

Funding opportunity: Women in Enterprising Science at the IGI.
The HS Chau Women in Enterprising Science Program (WIES) at the IGI is now accepting proposals from aspiring entrepreneurs seeking to translate genomics research into impactful solutions to real-world challenges and advance the representation of women founders in biotechnology. Read more.

2023 Vilcek Prizes for Creative Promise.
The Vilcek Foundation is now accepting applications for the 2023 Vilcek Prizes for Creative Promise. Three prizes of $50,000 each will be awarded in each of two categories: Biomedical Science and Music. The deadline to apply is June 10, 2022. Read more.

Meet The Awardees of the 2021 Eppendorf and Science Prize.
Congratulations to the winner of the Eppendorf and Science Prize for Neurobiology, Amber L. Alhadeff. Her research investigates gut-brain signaling and its contributions to feeding and other motivated behaviors.  You can read her award winning research here. Read more.

New book celebrates trailblazing MIT physicist Mildred Dresselhaus.
In “Carbon Queen: The Remarkable Life of Nanoscience Pioneer Mildred Dresselhaus,” science writer Maia Weinstock describes how, with curiosity and drive, Dresselhaus defied expectations and forged a career as a pioneering scientist and engineer. Read more. Professor Dresselhaus was a true legend and we were honored to have her speak at our 2012 RFS Board meeting.

WHO scientist Mwele Malecela dies at 59.
Mwele Malecela, the director of the World Health Organization’s Department of Control of Neglected Tropical Diseases, died in Geneva on February 10, 2022, from complications relating to cancer, which she had been diagnosed with in 2019. She was 59. Read more. 

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