Kina Thackray is an Associate Professor of Obstetrics, Gynecology and Reproductive Sciences at UC San Diego. She received a B.A. in biology at Middlebury College and then worked as a lab technician at Cornell University and Ribozyme Pharmaceuticals. She obtained her Ph.D. in molecular biology at the University of Colorado Health Sciences Center and completed her post-doctoral training in reproductive endocrinology at UC San Diego. She has a comprehensive background in hormone signaling and regulation of gene expression in reproductive tissues. She also pioneered studies on the role of the gut microbiome in polycystic ovary syndrome. Her research accomplishments have been recognized by the Endocrine Society Early Investigators Award and the Women in Endocrinology Young Investigator Award. Kina is passionate about advocating for the equal participation of women in STEM. She has been an active member of AWIS San Diego since 2005 and is currently a member of the Board. She has served on the Scholarship (2006-2016; Co-Chair 2006-2008) and Outreach Committees (2016-present; Co-Chair 2017-2019).
Varykina (Kina) Thackray, Ph.D.
Corine Lau is the clinical oncology lead at Human Longevity Incorporation (HLI). She analyzes the complex genomic changes that drive cancer, with the goal of providing clinical solution for cancer patients. Prior to joining HLI, she managed a portfolio of genetic sequencing products as a product manager at Pathway Genomics. Corine is also passionate about scientific writing and communications. Corine received her Ph.D. in Molecular, Cellular, and Developmental Biology from the University of Colorado, Boulder, and pursued her post-doctoral training at the University of California, San Diego.
Corine has held various AWIS-SD positions since 2006 including Treasurer and Website Committee co-chair. She currently serves as Newsletter co-chair and WIST conference committee member. Corine also enjoys singing with Pacific Women’s chorus, rock climbing, and yoga.
Corine Lau, PhD
Kate Prosser is a Canadian NSERC postdoctoral fellow at the University of California San Diego working in the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry. She is originally from New Brunswick, Canada, where she completed her B.Sc. in chemistry at Mount Allison University, before pursuing her PhD at Simon Fraser University in Burnaby, British Columbia. Kate was previously an active member of the West Coast Women in Engineering, Science and Technology, for which she served on the advisory committee, and has been leading science outreach activities since 2013. Since arriving in San Diego in July of 2019, she has volunteering with AWIS, getting involved in conference planning and scientific outreach in the community.
Kathleen (Kate) Prosser, PhD
Wendy Ochoa has worked as an Assistant Professor at Grossmont and National University and UCSD Extension. She is about to embark in a new professional adventure as a Scientific Solutions Consultant at Benchling. She worked as a Senior Marketing Communications Manager at MO BIO Laboratories, now Qiagen. MO BIO researchers and manufactures DNA & RNA Isolation Kits that support Microbiology Research all over the world.
She obtained her Ph.D. at the University of Barcelona in the field of Structural Virology. She continued her academic research at The Scripps Research Institute, UCSD and The Sandford-Burnham Institute in San Diego.
Wendy Ochoa, PhD
Betty Cabrera is a biomedical research professional with over 18 years experience across a spectrum of scientific investigations in the basic, translational and clinical research space. She earned a B.S. in Biochemistry from UC San Diego and a Master of Public Health from San Diego State University, and has primarily held roles in an academic setting facilitating project development with government agencies, patient advocate groups, pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies. Betty has worked with a diverse portfolio of products, including cell and gene therapies, and in various areas of therapeutic application (among them oncology, rare diseases and regenerative medicine). She is currently a Clinical Operations Manager at the UC San Diego CIRMAlpha Stem Cell Clinic. Betty thrives in an applied science career where she can build teams and maximize process efficiency. She finds that the key elements of career and life fulfillment are improving the physical world around you, embracing diversity and bringing others along with you for the ride. A future aspiration is to apply her project management and stakeholder engagement skill set to addressing the environmental challenges we face.
Betty Cabrera, MPH
Alex is a postdoc in the Cell and Molecular Medicine department at UCSD. He studies host-pathogen interactions of Zika virus in neural progenitor cells and the interplay between viral infection and the autophagy pathway. He received his PhD from the UCSD biology department and his B.S. in Biology from Purdue University. He has been active in AWIS-SD on the Website Committee since 2015 and as a Board Member at Large from 2017-2019.
Alex Clark, PhD
Christina Niemeyer, Ph.D. is an Associate at i2 Grants Associates, a woman owned and operated California-based team with years of experience identifying and securing grants for emerging companies and nonprofit organizations in the life sciences. From 2009-2012 she was Laboratory Director at Sanford Burnham Prebys Medical Discovery Institute. As Associate Director of Molecular and Cellular Biology at Salmedix, she played a critical role in developing the oncology drug Treanda. Christina earned her Ph.D. at Baylor College of Medicine in cell biology and her B.S. from Texas A&M University in microbiology. She has been an active member of AWIS-SD for over 20 years; she has served on the WIST Committee for numerous years, as Treasurer (2014 and 2015), as a Board Member (2016 and 2017), as Mid-Career Coffee Club Coordinator and Co-Chair of AWIS Leadership Network.
Christina Niemeyer, Ph.D
Radhika Gopal is Associate Product Manager, Cell Biology at Thermo Fisher Scientific. Prior to this role, she was a Technical Application Specialist supporting products in the quantitative PCR portfolio.
Radhika received her Ph.D. in Cell Biology from Marquette University, Milwaukee and pursued post-doctoral training at Scripps Research, La Jolla. She has been a AWIS-San Diego member since 2013 and served as chair of the Corporate Sponsorship Committee. Radhika currently serves as conference committee member and liaison between AWIS-SD and Thermo Fisher Scientific for WIST.
Radhika Gopal, PhD
Kristina Schimmelpfeng Henthorn is Associate Director in the Product Technical Support group at GenMark Diagnostics. Her team serves as an interface between Manufacturing, Customer Technical Support and R&D to troubleshoot, drive process improvements and facilitate technology transfer in collaboration with QC and QA teams.
Kristina received her Ph.D. in developmental biology and neuroscience from the Westfälische Wilhelms-Universität Münster, Germany in 2000. She then moved to San Diego to pursue her postdoctoral training in Dr. Lawrence Goldstein's laboratory at UCSD studying the role of axonal transport in maintaining neuronal polarity and neurodegenerative diseases.
In 2008 Kristina became Principal Scientist at RGo Bioscience investigating siRNA/peptide nanoparticle delivery technologies in vitro and in vivo until the company was acquired by Pfizer in late 2011. From 2012-2014 Kristina was working as Principal Scientist at RetroVirox Inc, developing anti-viral cell-based assays. In 2014 Kristina joined GenMark Diagnostics. Before moving into her current role, she was leading a team in the Assay Development Group developing the Respiratory Panel for the sample-to-answer platform ePlex®. The assay received FDA 510(k) clearance in 2017.
Kristina has been an AWIS-San Diego member since 2008 and served on the website committee. She has been the committee Co-Chair from 2013-2015 and has been a member of the AWIS-SD executive board from 2015-2017. Kristina has previously been part of the WIST organizing committee in 2011, 2013 and 2015.
Kristina Schimmelpfeng Henthorn, PhD
Dorota Skowronska-Krawczyk is a biochemist and molecular biologist. She received her MSc in Molecular Biology at the University of Warsaw, Poland, and a Ph.D. in Biochemistry at the University of Geneva, Switzerland. Her primary research interest is in understanding mechanism of aging using the eye and age-related eye diseases as a model system. Dorota is currently an Assistant Professor of Ophthalmology, University of California San Diego, Shiley Eye Institute. She is the co-inventor of several new technologies and she has authored a number of publications in high impact factor journals. Her research is currently funded by several foundations, grants, and an NIH National Eye Institute R01 Award.
Dorota joined AWIS-San Diego in 2016 and since then is involved in Scholarship Committee which allows her to play a part in helping young women to pursue their careers in STEM.
Dorota Skowronska-Krawczyk, PhD
Robyn is an analyst with degrees in biology and business and 10 years of experience managing projects and data communication with multi-level & multi-departmental interfaces and collaborations in the Healthcare IT sector. She brings both a scientific & business mindset to the discovery and communication of data insight in attaining strategic outcomes. Her passions include the intersection of data science, research, genomics, and healthcare, and she enjoys the challenge of communicating insight through the lens of human perception, behavior, and connection. Robyn has a long career in STEM advocacy and joined AWIS San Diego in 2011. She is the current WIST Conference Chair, Public Relations Co-Chair, and STEM Active Connect Chair and works to highlight and expand our AWIS San Diego network. She has also held positions as the AWIS SD Outreach Co-Chair and STEM Career Conference Co-Director.