News Archive 2012

Women In Bio DC/Baltimore Chapter Celebrates with a Holiday Gala

DC/Baltimore held their annual Holiday Gala on December 12, 2012 at the National Museum of Women in the Arts, a stunning setting in downtown D.C. Guests mingled and networked while enjoying hors d'oeuvres and the lovely background music provided by violinist Molly Hollingsworth. The highlight of the evening was the scholarship presentation to Emma Tall, a local entrepreneur working in biosensor technology. Guests were invited to tour the museum, including the popular “Women Who Rock” exhibit. Many thanks to everyone who helped make this event a success!

Join a MAPs Group or Become a Mentor for Current Graduate Students Through the WIB-Washington DC/Baltimore Chapter MAPs-University Program!

Are you interested in getting to know other professional women in a small informal setting to discuss topics important to your career growth and professional development? Would you like to mentor graduate students in the biological science? If you answer yes to either of those questions, fill out this questionnaire and you will be assigned to a local Mentors, Advisors, and Peers (MAPs) group!  For questions please contact

WIB-Chicago Announces New Steering Committee Members

We are pleased to announce that two proposals, one to change our by-laws and one to elect the new slate of Directors, achieved a majority vote via on-line balloting.  Our new additions to the Steering Committee are Heather Kissling, Marshall, Gerstein & Borun LLP; Laura Campbell, Perkins Coie; Susan Tomillo, Sikich Investment Banking; and Grace Kefer, Kefer Financial.  For more information, click here or email

Lily Rin-Laures, M.D., Previous Chair of the WIB-Chicago Chapter, Named a Minority Corporate Counsel Association 2012 Rainmaker

Li-Hsien (Lily) Rin-Laures, M.D., partner at Marshall, Gerstein & Borun and previous Chair of WIB-Chicago’s Steering Committee, has been named a Minority Corporate Counsel Association (MCCA) 2012 Rainmaker.  Dr. Rin-Laures is one of four women on the short list of 17 attorneys featured in the current issue of MCCA’s Diversity & The Bar magazine. More details are available here.  Congratulations Lily!

Celebrating a Successful Year and WIB Scholarship Recipient at “Networking on the Northshore

WIB Chicago members and friends gathered on Chicago's North Shore on December 6, 2012, to celebrate the chapter's successful year.  Dimitra Georganopoulou, Chair of WIB Chicago's Steering Committee, awarded Maryam Saleh, Northwestern University, with a WIB Scholarship.  Congratulations to Maryam, and thanks to Takeda Pharmaceuticals North America for sponsoring this fantastic event.

WIB-Greater Montreal Celebrates the Holiday Season

After our fantastic launch event in November, WIB-Greater Montreal hosted a Happy Hour on December 12, 2012 to celebrate the Holiday season. With a light sprinkling of snow on our coats, over thirty Montreal women and men gathered at the Whisky Café, welcoming new faces to our WIB chapter and renewing acquaintances. The event was buzzing with the sound of people sharing their passion for life science and making plans for the future. Our guests enjoyed the warm ambience, the delicious hors d'oeuvres, and a glass or two of festive cheer! Thank you to everyone who attended, we look forward to seeing you at future WIB-Greater Montreal events in 2013, and we wish everyone a safe and happy Holiday season.

WIB-Pittsburgh Holds Winter Book Club Event with a Surprise Guest

The WIB-Pittsburgh chapter held a Winter Book Club at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center’s Technology Development Center on December 12, 2012. Over 25 women turned up to discuss “Ask For It: How Women Can Use the Power of Negotiation to Get What They Really Want” by Linda Babcock & Sara Laschever. Special thanks goes out to our notable guest, one of the authors, Linda Babcock, a Professor of Economics at Carnegie Mellon University, who joined in on the conversation to provide additional insight into negotiating skills based upon her research. Following the lively and engaging discussion, attendees had an opportunity to share their successes and challenges related to negotiating in their own careers. Stay tuned for our Spring/Summer Book Club!

WIB-RTP Hosts Holiday Party

More than a 120 folks from the WIB-RTP chapter, the Association For Women In Science and Graduate Women In Science gathered for a beautiful Holiday Party at North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences on the evening of December 12, 2012.  The venue was beautiful and the attendees enjoyed refreshments, networking and sharing the Holiday spirit.  Ana McLanahan, a member of WIB-RTP, was presented with a $1,000 WIB scholarship to help with her continuing education in the life science industry.

Ideas, Inspiration and New Connections at WIB Seattle Metro’s TEDxWomen 2012 Event

At this remarkable TEDxSouthLakeUnionWomen event held on Saturday, December 1, 2012, we were very pleased to join 10,000 other global participants at 150 local events held all over the world where presentations in Washington DC were live-streamed in more than 50 languages across 6 continents. Working with our sponsoring partners Microsoft Research, the University of Washington’s Information School and the UW Women In Informatics Group, we hosted a cross-generational and multi-ethnic mix of women, men and girls who enjoyed listening to a rich and stimulating array of speakers who sparked new ideas and inspired us to make new connections. Our two local speakers were Katie Davis, a youth and digital media scholar based at the University of Washington Information School, who talked about how youth today differ from those who grew up in the pre-digital age, and Munmun De Choudhury, a computational social scientist based at Microsoft Research, who shared her research about fostering emotional intelligence online. Our bonus session was a screening of Jennifer Siebel Newsom’s powerful Sundance documentary, Miss Representation, which explores how the media’s many misrepresentations of women contribute to the under-representation of women in positions of power and influence. The film features interviews with leading politicians, journalists, entertainers, activists and academics including Condoleezza Rice, Nancy Pelosi, Rachel Maddow, and Gloria Steinem.

WIB-Pittsburgh Celebrates at Launch Event

WIB successfully launched a new chapter in Pittsburgh, PA on November 29, 2012 at Bridgeside Point. Nearly 70 attendees were present, ranging from local biotech executives to post-doctorate fellows and graduate students. With this mixture of professionals and aspiring professionals in the room, the networking sessions were said to be “robust and fruitful.”  The enthusiasm in the room was articulated well in a conversation between Dr. Susan Catalano, CSO of Cognition Therapeutics, and Ms. Rebecca Harris, Director of the Center for Women's Entrepreneurship at Chatham University.  Susan believes the Pittsburgh “region is incredibly vibrant…there’s so much young talent and a growing industry that will allow them to stay here.”  Rebecca agreed then added that the “key now is to get women engaged…[WIB] is the platform to do it.”  In her inspiring speech to the women at the launch event, Alexandra Drane encouraged everyone to be intentional and to be brave (rather than just innovative). Tremendous appreciation for our local sponsors who made this event possible:  Buchanan Ingersoll and Rooney, ThermoFisher Scientific, and Pittsburgh Technology Council.

WIB-RTP’s First Annual 5K run/walk

More than 200 people gathered at the North Carolina Biotechnology Center on Saturday December 1, 2012 for the first annual 5K run/walk to support the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation. The 5K course is a brand new course recently certified by the USA Track and Field. The youngest participant at the 5K was five years old and the oldest was 71 years old.  Top honors went to John Baker from San Diego, California who clocked at 21:44 and Dr. Eva Garland, VP of Research at Agile Sciences who clocked at 24:03.  Dr. Christy Shaffer from the Board of Trustees and Kay James the Executive Director of the Carolinas Chapter of the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation helped kick off the event. Raleigh Running Outfitters of Cary provided prizes to the winners. Middle school girls from YWIB sold hot drinks, delicious treats and WIB merchandise to the crowd. A check will be presented to the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation at the WIB Holiday Party on Dec 12, 2012.

WIB-RTP’s Three Part Young Women In Bio Entrepreneurs Workshop

WIB-RTP chapter hosted a three part Young Women In Bio Entrepreneurs Workshop at the North Carolina Biotechnology Center on November 2, November 16 and December 1, 2012.  Thirty two middle school girls participated from local middle schools for these workshops.  They learned about the basics of business including marketing, financials, and operations planning during the first two workshops.  During the third workshop, which was combined with WIB-RTP’s first annual 5K walk/run, these young entrepreneurs got the opportunity to put their business ideas into practice.  The young entrepreneurs sold hot beverages, dog treats, baked goods and WIB merchandise to the crowd at the 5K.  All four teams and their ventures made a profit from sales of their products that day. The teams chose to donate their profits to the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation and to the Second Chance Pet Adoptions.

Professional Development Advice and Insights Shared at WIB-Chicago’s Senior Leadership Forum

Over 90 attendees gathered at Takeda in Deerfield on November 8, 2012 to hear local female executives’ insights and advice on career development in the life sciences industry.  Catherine Sazdanoff, VP, Global Business Development, Takeda Pharmaceuticals International; K'Lynne Johnson, CEO, Elevance Renewable Sciences; Andrea Hunt, VP, Regenerative Medicine, Baxter Healthcare; and Lynn Bromstedt, former Divisional VP, Abbott Animal Health, shared their thoughts on self-promotion, power, mentoring, and networking.  The informative and inspirational discussion was moderated by Heather Kissling, Marshall, Gerstein & Borun.  WIB-Chicago thanks the panelists and event sponsors Takeda Pharmaceuticals and Marshall, Gerstein & Borun for their support.

WIB-RTP Holds Fall Professional Development Program: Enhancing your leadership skills

WIB-RTP chapter had an amazing record breaking turnout for the Fall Professional Development Program on Thursday October 25, 2012 at the North Carolina Biotechnology Center.  Eighty five brilliant women attended the event to learn and refresh their professional skills. Cynthia White of Cynthia White and Associates, spoke about Image and Personal Branding. Monica Doss from Business of Science, LLC, spoke about Leadership and Entrepreneurship. Also, Elizabeth (Betsy) Smith, Ph. D., of E.L. Smith Consulting, spoke about Value and Empowerment. We look forward to future events!

Washington DC/Baltimore Celebrates End of Summer with LES

WIB and LES teamed up to host a joint happy hour at Elephant & Castle in downtown DC on August 9, 2012. This free event was well attended by over 60 people. WIB members enjoyed making new connections while learning more about LES, and two free memberships were raffled off. WIB looks forward to collaborating with LES in the future!

Women In Bio at BIO 2012!

The 2012 BIO International Convention, which was hosted in the backyard of our newly formed WIB-Greater Boston chapter, was a tremendous success by all measures, thanks to the enthusiastic group of volunteers and members from WIB. Based on the impressive feedback throughout the week, it was clear there is an important need for Women In Bio on a global scale! Click here to read more about this event. We've posted reviews, audio and video from our week in Boston.

WIB President, Phyllis Dillinger, Discusses WIB's Participation at BIO 2012

In this video from BIO, Phyllis Dillinger, WIB President, is interviewed about the benefits of the BIO International Convention which is being held in Boston on June 18-21, 2012. Ms. Dillinger speaks about the value for women to attend this event, and how it is a great opportunity to network with people who you wouldn’t likely cross paths with in your career. WIB will be hosting a Welcome Reception on June 18, 2012 as well as hosting a booth in the exhibit area at this exciting event.

Washington DC/Baltimore Celebrates Summer En Masse at June Happy Hour

Over 50 women gathered at La Tasca in Rockville on June 14, 2012 to kick off the summer season. Guests enjoyed good food, good weather, and spirited conversation in lovely downtown Rockville.

San Francisco Solves the Awkward Silences With its First Speed Networking Event

Over 40 life science professionals from the San Francisco Bay Area mixed excitement with efficiency, splendor and speed as they met and chatted with new faces against the spectacular scenery of the San Francisco Bay. K&L Gates, in the Embarcadero Center, hosted our first speed networking event, which was a well-choreographed and highly coordinated function. Everyone exchanged key and fun information about themselves in 2 1/2 minute time segments. The room was filled with the sounds of interesting conversation, interrupted only by the buzzer signaling it was time to move on. Huge thanks to Monica Kuniyoshi from K&L Gates for being the timekeeper and helping with the event. Stay tuned for dates and times of further speed-networking events for the Peninsula and East Bay areas.

WIB-Washington DC/Baltimore Teams Up to Support Breast Cancer Research

WIB-Washington DC/Baltimore had great representation at the Susan G. Komen "Race for the Cure" on June 3, 2012 in downtown DC. The team sported matching WIB hats which were provided by NIH Federal Credit Union. A refreshing brunch followed the charity event and was hosted by Hartmann Willner LLC. Many thanks to our sponsors and DC/Baltimore Chapter members for donating an additional $400 to the WIB team!

WIB-Washington DC/Baltimore:  Institute for Genome Sciences (IGS) Hosts Young Women In Bio

Over 30 middle school girls and 30 parents and teachers gathered at the Institute for Genome Sciences (IGS) at the University of Maryland School of Medicine in downtown Baltimore on May 16, 2012. The afternoon was filled with discovering the fun and challenge of science and medical careers and included a hands-on activity where DNA was extracted from strawberries. Thanks to Dr. Linda Saffer of TEDCO, Dr. Linda Yaswen-Corkery of Technology Transfer at UMB, and Sarah Pick of IGS for coordinating this wonderful event, and thanks to all of the parents and students who participated!  To view highlights of the event, click here to access the video.

WIB-Chicago Chapter Hosted "Building Your Confidence Through the Top 10 Networking and Business Development Best Practices"

More than 40 women met on May 15, 2012 for drinks, dinner, and an amazing program on business development hosted by WIB-Chicago. At the event, attendees learned practical tools for building confidence in their networking practices, as well as new ways to develop their networks into relationships that can lead to professional opportunities. Many thanks to our presenter, Deb Knupp of Akina, for a dynamic and informative program.

WIB-National:  "Discussion with the Expert" Series Continues with Jeffrey Shuren, M.D., J.D.

WIB had a great turnout for the most recent installment of the "Discussion with the Expert" series on April 26, 2012. This event featured Dr. Jeff Shuren, M.D., J.D., Director of the Center for Devices and Radiological Health for the FDA. In addition to the over 50 people gathered at the Arnold & Porter LLP office in Washington D.C., another 30 joined from Chicago, San Francisco, and Seattle via a live-stream. Dr. Shuren began by outlining CDRH's mission and vision, which he stated as: protecting and promoting public health by making sure patients have access to safe, high-quality and effective medical devices. He continued by introducing a new program at the FDA called Innovation Pathway, which is designed to create a greater collaboration between device companies and agency experts to shorten the time and resources needed to get products and services to market. The FDA hopes the Innovation Pathway program will transform how the agency and innovators work together. The forum closed with Q&A moderated by longtime WIB member, Jenny Regan, co-founder and CEO of KeyTech. Click here more information on the Innovation Pathway program.

WIB President Emeritus, Debra Bowes, talks about Women In Bio's Mission

Debra Bowes, President Emeritus of Women In Bio, discusses WIB's mission to support women in life science careers.  Click here to listen to the podcast.

WIB-Seattle Metro Chapter Hosted TEDxChange Event on Global Health & Development

More than 150 people attended an amazing TEDxChange event on global health and development, live-streamed from Berlin, Germany and hosted at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation campus in Seattle, on April 5, 2012.  Presentations included many calls to action about finding innovative ways to prevent disease by installing simple sanitation systems in Southeast Asia, building a greener and less hungry world by making renewable energy a reality, enlisting the help of young people in India to promote the vaccination of babies against polio, and encouraging women whose activism and achievements have been largely ignored to step forward and claim their role in changing, saving and improving the world.  The forum closed with an impassioned speech by Melinda Gates about access to family planning for some of the world's poorest women in developing countries around the world. 

WIB-Washington DC/Baltimore:  YWIB Club Members at Churchill Middle School Take Home First Prize

Congratulations and thanks to Alex Boukhavolova, an incredible student at Churchill Middle School in Montgomery County, MD, for initiating and recruiting a YWIB club at her school. During the week of March 23, 2012, five members of this club participated as judges in the Science Montgomery Annual Science Fair. YWIB had great representation and was invited back for future events. WIB-DC/Baltimore Chapter is so proud to have such incredible leaders and innovators in our midst. Thank you to Alex, YWIB leadership, and all those who support YWIB!

WIB-San Francisco Bay Area Chapter Launch is a Smashing Success

On March 22, 2012, we networked. We received inspiration. We energized one another. We partied. We made plans for the future. Over 150 women gathered at UCSF’s Mission Bay Conference Center in San Francisco. Kim Popovits, the Chairman, President and CEO of Redwood City cancer diagnostic test developer, Genomic Health, Inc., fielded questions from a rapt audience about her path to the top position at the company.  Her main message –- find mentors and advisors who will push you to take risks. Get outside your comfort zone and dare to fail. WIB’s President Phyllis Dillinger and Laura Shawver, CEO of Cleave Biosciences, also addressed the audience. It was a fabulous night and we look forward to our next event. To read an article from the San Francisco Business Times summarizing the event, click here.

WIB-National:  More than 300 Join WIB for the 2012 Annual Dinner in Washington, DC

More than 300 guests filled the Omni Shoreham hotel in Washington, DC on March 21, 2012 for the 10th Women In Bio Annual Dinner. Attendees enjoyed hors d'oeuvres while networking both inside the hotel and in the surrounding gardens during the peak of cherry blossom season. Speakers included WIB-Chicago Chapter Chair Lily Rin-Laures M.D., J.D., and WIB President Phyllis Dillinger. The meal culminated with an inspirational story of success by Dr. Laura Shawver, CEO of Cleave Biosciences and founder of The Clearity Foundation, and an ovarian cancer survivor. Click here to view a recap of her keynote address. In her speech, Dr. Shawver guided the audience through her life as a CEO, founder of a non-profit, and an ovarian cancer survivor. She used her experience as a surfer to draw comparisons with the business world and how she was successful by going the route which most others chose to avoid.  A dessert buffet and conversation followed dinner. With seven chapters launching in the past two years, there was international representation from different chapters that contributed to the prestige of the event. Thank you to all of our sponsors for making this wonderful event possible. To read a review of the event written by Rob Wright of Life Science Leader, click here.

WIB-Chicago Holds First Installment of the 2012 Book Club Series

On March 20, 2012, WIB-Chicago held the first installment of its 2012 Book Club Series, which featured the book "Nice Girls Don't Get the Corner Office: 101 Unconscious Mistakes Women Make That Sabotage Their Careers" by Lois P. Frankel, Ph.D. Over 20 women participated in lively discussions of the theories presented in the book and shared their strategies for success in the workplace. Interested in facilitating a future book club? Contact for more information.

WIB National:  “Knowing Your Value” 2012 Webinar Series Continues

WIB offered another installment of the “Knowing Your Value: Women, Money, and Getting What You’re Worth” webinar series on March 14, 2012, hosted by WIB-Chicago. Panelists Andrea Moran, managing partner at the executive search firm, Marengo Hampshire Partners, and Mina Amir-Mokri, partner at Edwards Wildman, shared insights and tips for “Negotiating Your Employment Contract.” Click here for directions on how to access the webinar online.

WIB-Greater Boston Chapter Kick Off Event A Success!

On March 8, 2012 over 140 attended the kick off event for the WIB-Greater Boston chapter.  Special guest speaker, Abbie Celniker, CEO of Eleven Therapeutics and one of FierceBiotech's 2011 Women in Biotech, inspiried the attendees with her words of wisdom and encouragement.  The night was filled with great company, food and networking.  A full summary of the event can be read here.

WIB-RTP Chapter:  Young Women In Bio Program Continues Its Fruitful Collaboration with Biogen Idec

On February 28, 2012, thirty young women from area middle schools arrived at the RTP location of Biogen Idec.  The young ladies met company scientists, took tours of the facilities, learned about the manufacturing of bio-pharmaceuticals and participated in hands-on activities that included using pipettes in the lab and how to properly document the product production.  The girls asked thoughtful questions about the types of products Biogen Idec manufactures, the patients that they help.


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