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

Columbia names Nemat Shafik as president, the first woman to lead the university. 

The selection of Dr. Shafik, known as Minouche, marks the first time a woman has been named to lead the prestigious New York institution. In a letter to the Columbia community, the university’s board of trustees said it had found a “perfect candidate” in Dr. Shafik, a “brilliant and able global leader, a community builder and a pre-eminent economist who understands the academy and the world beyond it.” Read more. Image: Wikipedia.

Leadership in science: how female researchers are breaking up the boys’ club.
In this podcast episode, Charu Kaushic, a research group leader at McMaster University in Hamilton, Canada, says that leadership is more than just exercising power, competence and confidence, it is also about wanting to do good. Read more.

MIT scholar to lead the Advanced Research Projects Agency at the U.S. Department of Energy.

Evelyn Wang, the Ford Professor of Engineering at MIT, has been confirmed by the US Senate as the director of the Advanced Research Projects Agency-Energy at the U.S. Department of Energy. As director of ARPA-E, Dr. Wang will advance the agency’s mission to fund and support early-stage energy research that has the potential to impact energy generation, storage, and use. Read more. Photo: Bryce Vickmark (MIT News)

Leona Zacharias helped solve a blindness epidemic among premature babies. She received little credit.
In the first Lost Women of Science Shorts podcast, host Katie Hafner dives into the life and work of Leona Zacharias—a brilliant researcher who, before reporting this story, Hafner only knew as her grandmother Read more.

Men predicted to outnumber women in physics until the year 2158. 
An analysis of nearly 5.5 million scientific papers has found that, on current trends, the proportion of women authoring research won't reach parity with men in some fields for over 100 years. Cassidy Sugimoto at the Georgia Institute of Technology in Atlanta and Vincent Larivière at the University of Montreal in Canada analyzed nearly 5.5 million scientific papers published between 2008 and 2020. Read more.  

The American Association of Immunologists announces the 2023 recipients of AAI Awards for outstanding research and career achievements.
The 2023 AAI Award winners will be recognized at IMMUNOLOGY2023™, May 11–15, in Washington, DC. Read more.

Women in science: Cancer research pioneers – part 1

In this article, Cancer Research UK is highlighting three women who have helped bring forward innovative new cancer treatments through their involvement in clinical trials. Professor Ruth Plummer is an oncologist who specializes in treating patients on experimental cancer trials and people with melanoma, Dr. Eve Wiltshaw was a pioneer of medical oncology, and Professor Judith Bliss leads the Clinical Trials and Statistics Unit at The Institute of Cancer Research (ICR-CTSU). Read more.

A top U.S. science oversight board is about to get much more diverse.
On 13 January, Biden announced the pending appointment of seven women and one man for the eight vacancies on the National Science Board (NSB). The new class, which includes five scientists of color, will give the 24-member board a roster that features 10 women, three Black scientists, and three Latino scientists. “The president’s appointments will make this the most diverse National Science Board in history,” says Arati Prabhakar, director of the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy and assistant to the president for science and technology. Read more.

Call for Nominations: The 2023 Vilcek-Gold Award for Humanism in Healthcare.

The Vilcek Foundation and The Arnold P. Gold Foundation have announced an open call for nominations for the 2023 Vilcek-Gold Award for Humanism in Healthcare. Nominations will be accepted through January 31, 2023, at 5 p.m. Eastern Standard Time. Read more.

Four women, all marine scientists, plan to row 3,000 miles across Atlantic Ocean.

Three generations of USF academics are on a mission "for the oceans". They'll be competing in the 2023 Atlantic Challenge race later this year and hope to raise awareness and money for ocean conservation. "The oceans are facing a lot of threats right now, from climate change to overfishing, and we need people who can solve those problems," says Noelle Helder, one of the Salty Scientists. "We want to help train the next generation." Read more. Image:

Early Career Fellowships support 25 women scientists in the developing world. 
The Organization for Women in Science for the Developing World (OWSD) announced that 25 women have been granted the 2022 Early Career Fellowships. These scientists will receive up to $50,000 to lead research projects and establish research groups at their home institutions to maintain an international standard of research and attract scholars from all over the world to collaborate. Read more. 

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