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2018 Annual Conference Plenary Speakers Announced

Thursday, November 9, 2017  
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November 9, 2017

 

The National Postdoctoral Association (NPA) is pleased to announce that Alison Gammie, Ph.D., and Rafael Luna, Ph.D., have been confirmed as plenary speakers for the 16th NPA Annual Conference. The conference will take place April 6 - 8, 2018, at the Renaissance Cleveland Hotel in Cleveland, OH. Case Western Reserve University will serve as host.

 

Alison Gammie, Ph.D., is the director of the National Institute of General Medical Sciences (NIGMS) Division of Training, Workforce Development, and Diversity (TWD). TWD is the focal point for NIGMS programs aimed at developing a strong and diverse biomedical research workforce. Formerly, she was a senior lecturer at Princeton University. While at Princeton, in addition to teaching, mentoring and running a research laboratory, she served as the director of diversity programs, an academic advisor and an associate member at the Cancer Institute of New Jersey. She received a Bachelor of Arts from Reed College, a doctorate degree from the Oregon Health & Sciences University, and did her postdoctoral work as a Jane Coffin Childs Fellow at Princeton University.

 

As the executive director of the National Research Mentoring Network (NRMN) and the principal investigator (PI) of the Administrative Core of NRMN located at Boston College, Rafael E. Luna, Ph.D., utilizes data analytics to strategically grow NRMN and effectively reach all 50 states, including Hawaii, Alaska, and Puerto Rico.

 

Luna earned his bachelor’s degree in biological sciences from Southern University in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. During his senior year at Southern, he was named a Howard Hughes Medical Institute Scholar through Louisiana State University (LSU) and began doing molecular biology research with the LSU IDeA Networks of Biomedical Research Excellence (INBRE) and Centers of Biomedical Research Excellence (COBRE) PI, Konstantin Gus Kousoulas, Ph.D.

 

Luna performed his postdoctorate research at Harvard Medical School, which centered on elucidating the sequence of protein-protein interactions leading to the decoding of the initial start codons of messenger RNAs. Prior to his executive director role at NRMN, he held a junior faculty position in the Department of Biological Chemistry and Molecular Pharmacology at Harvard Medical School. In addition to doing biomedical research, he is a dynamic speaker and has led lectures and workshops throughout the United States and Europe on the art of scientific storytelling. Luna also believes in giving back to the community by serving as a little league coach for 10 years in inner-city Boston, and four years ago was elected as the president of Mission Hill Little League.


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