Bioengineering for Girls Partners + Advisors
Cherié Butts, Ph.D. Cellular Immunologist, Biogen
Cherié Butts (R+D Strategy and Portfolio Leadership) is a cellular immunologist who serves as Portfolio Lead for NeuroImmunology + Acute Neurology at Biogen (Cambridge, Mass.). She obtained undergraduate and graduate degrees from The Johns Hopkins University. Her pre-doctoral studies characterized anti-tumor immune responses in ovarian cancer patients and postdoctoral studies at the National Institutes of Health examined neuroendocrine regulation of innate immunity. She continued this work at the US Food and Drug Administration, taking on additional responsibilities of evaluating drug and biologics applications. She now leads therapeutic and disease area strategy to help scientists and clinicians appreciate how assets address a specific unmet medical need for patients afflicted with debilitating conditions. She is passionate about ensuring individuals from all backgrounds contribute to the furtherance of biomedical research and works with professional societies, scientific and professional development organizations, and biomedical research institutions to do so. She currently serves on the Board of Overseers and Research Oversight Committee of Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center and Board of Directors of Keystone Symposia and is Adjunct Associate Professor at University of Maryland.
Meg Kirkpatrick, Ph.D. Associate Provost + Associate Professor of Psychology, Wheaton College Meg Kirkpatrick is an Associate Provost and Associate Professor of Psychology at Wheaton College in Norton, Massachusetts. Professor Kirkpatrick is interested in the relationship between the brain and behavior and the influence of a dynamic environment on neural functioning. Her research focuses on the role of hormones — particularly estrogen, progesterone, and testosterone — in behavior, and has recently examined environmental endocrine disruptors such as BPA in order to look specifically at how BPA affects hormone receptors in the brain and reproductive function of animals. Prior to joining the Wheaton College faculty, Professor Kirkpatrick was a postdoctoral fellow at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst. She has published numerous times in professional journals, and holds degrees from Smith College and Dartmouth College.
Laura Macesic Ekstrom, Ph.D. Assistant Professor of Biology, Wheaton College
Laura Macesic Ekstrom is an Assistant Professor of Biology at Wheaton College in Norton, Massachusetts, and Professor of Practice for EXPLO's Bioengineering and Medicine Focus Program. She co-founded and organizes the Wheaton College Summit for Women in STEM in order to provide support, to celebrate, and to connect local undergraduate women to potential mentors, employers, and colleagues. Professor Ekstrom obtained her undergraduate degree in biology from McMaster University, her Ph.D. in integrative biology from Florida Atlantic University, and was a Postdoctoral Fellow at Mount Holyoke College for women where she taught comparative functional morphology and mammalian anatomy while researching neuromuscular control of landing in anurans. At Wheaton College she teaches courses in genetics, physiology, vertebrate evolution and anatomy, biology of sharks, and comparative biomechanics. Her research interests include biomechanics and the control of locomotion in vertebrates, the evolution of skeletons, and morphological plasticity.
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