Angela DePace, PhD
Director and Founder / Associate Professor of Systems Biology, Harvard Medical School
Angela DePace joined the Department of Systems Biology at Harvard Medical School in 2008, where her laboratory investigates the mechanism and evolution of gene expression in animals — fundamental biology with implications for personalized medicine. Her research couples mathematical theory to quantitative experiments in Drosophila embryos to test basic assumptions about how transcription is controlled, and to predict the output of regulatory sequences in the genome.
She teaches scientific communication and co-authored the book “Visual Strategies: A Practical Guide to Graphics for Scientists and Engineers”. She is widely recognized for her commitment to mentoring and career development for graduate students, and has shared her methods through invited seminars, a popular article, and an online course offered by iBiology. She received an NSF CAREER award in acknowledgment of her innovative research and teaching. She is also the founding faculty director of the Scientific Citizenship Initiative (SCI), which aims to train scientists for effective civic engagement and facilitate a cultural shift in academia to enable and value engagement of scientists at all career stages.
Dr. DePace received her bachelor’s degree in Molecular Biophysics and Biochemistry from Yale College, and her Ph.D. in Biochemistry from the University of California, San Francisco. She was a Helen Hay Whitney postdoctoral fellow at the University of California, Berkeley.
Daniel Pomeroy, PhD
Daniel Pomeroy joined the Scientific Citizenship Initiative in 2020 as its first Executive Director. Prior to joining SCI he helped develop MIT’s Policy Lab at the Center for International Studies, which develops and enhances relationships between MIT researchers with the public policy world. Dr. Pomeroy serves on the external advisory board and steering committees of a number of programs designed to increase civic engagement and expand career opportunities for scientists and engineers. These include Boston University’s Broadening Experiences in Scientific Training (BEST) program and the Engaging Scientists & Engineers in Policy (ESEP) Coalition.
Dr. Pomeroy received his Ph.D. in physics from Brandeis University in 2012 studying high energy physics as part of the ATLAS experiment at CERN. He then served as a postdoctoral fellow at the National Academy of Sciences and as a AAAS Science and Technology Policy fellow in the office of Senator Edward J. Markey. He also has extensive experience in grassroots political organizing, running volunteer LGBT rights campaigns, as well as professionally directing field offices during the 2008 elections.
Natalie Kofler, PhD
Curriculum Lead and Strategic Advisor / Founder, Editing Nature
Natalie is a strategic advisor for organizational development and leads curriculum design at SCI. She develops innovative learning experiences that guide scientists to think critically and broadly about the social implications and ethical considerations of scientific innovation, while building skills in scientific communication, leadership, and civic responsibility.
Natalie is the founding director of Editing Nature – a global initiative to steer responsible development and deployment of genetic technologies. She is a leading voice in CRISPR and synthetic biology ethics and governance, authoring numerous publications on the topic, serving on expert panels, and contributing to UN mandated documents. Her work has been highlighted by The New York Times, Science, Nature, NPR, CBC radio, Pacific Standard Magazine, and National Geographic. She lectures at the Center for Biomedical Ethics at Harvard Medical School. She served as the resident scholar in sustainability a the University of Illinois, a visiting scholar at the Hastings Center for Bioethics, and is an affiliate scholar at the Yale Program in Biomedical Ethics. She received her PhD in cellular, molecular, and medical biosciences and MS in human nutrition and metabolic studies from Columbia University and her BS in human anatomy and cell biology from McGill University.
Multimedia Lead and Strategic Advisor / Founder, Ethics Unwrapped at UT Austin
Cara Biasucci leads multimedia content development and is a strategic advisor for SCI. She is also Director of Ethics Education for the Center for Leadership and Ethics, and Creator of Ethics Unwrapped, an award-winning ethics video series produced at The University of Texas at Austin.
Cara develops educational programs that focus on ethics and leadership. Her latest book, Behavioral Ethics in Practice: Why We Sometimes Make the Wrong Decisions, is a primer on behavioral ethics and was co-authored with Robert Prentice. Most recently, she wrote about teaching behavioral ethics for the forthcoming book series Teaching Ethics Across the American Educational Experience.
Before her deep dive into academia, Cara was a freelance filmmaker. She wrote, produced, and directed award-winning films and television programs for more than a decade for clients such as American Public Television, Discovery Times, Johns Hopkins Medicine, and the New England Patriots. Her documentary films were supported by (among others) The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation, Engender Health, and Women in Film.
Cara also taught media production at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. She earned her MFA in Film & Video Production from The University of Texas at Austin, and her BA in philosophy magna cum laude from Bowdoin College.
Aditi Gupta, PhD
Postdoctoral Research Fellow
Aditi Gupta is a postdoctoral research fellow at the Scientific Citizenship Initiative. She focuses on institutional culture change, specifically how curriculum programming, policymaking, and institutional networking can be used as levers of change to increase civic engagement in STEM students and faculty.
Aditi is passionate about social justice and equity. She founded programs and developed strategies to improve the recruitment and retention of underrepresented students to graduate STEM programs at MIT. She further engaged with institutional policymakers to improve diversity, equity, and inclusion, winning the MIT Bridge Builder Award for her extensive public service. She also directed the MIT Global Startup Workshop, leading the organization of annual entrepreneurship workshops in Latin America and Asia to foster regional business ecosystems and democratize access to educational and funding opportunities for local students and entrepreneurs.
Prior to joining SCI, Aditi earned her PhD in Medical Engineering at the Harvard-MIT program in Health Sciences & Technology, where she studied human-machine interaction with wearable technology. Aditi grew up in Los Angeles and completed her BS in Bioengineering at UC San Diego.
Riley Taitingfong, PhD
Co-instructor, Applied Communications Course / Communications Expert
Riley Taitingfong is a postdoctoral researcher at the Herbert Wertheim School of Public Health & Human Longevity Science at the University of California San Diego (UCSD). Her interdisciplinary research is interested in the impacts of emerging technologies on Indigenous lands and resources. Her current projects focus on Indigenous self-determination and community engagement in relation to genetic engineering technologies and data privacy. Riley holds a Ph.D. from the Department of Communication at UCSD.
Initiative and Communications Coordinator
Josep-Andreu Palacios-Caballero joined the Scientific Citizenship Initiative as Initiative and Communications Coordinator in late 2019, after a previous collaboration with the Systems Biology Department at Harvard Medical School. Before joining SCI he worked as a PR and Press Relations Assistant at Eurecat technology center in Barcelona, Spain, where he supported science outreach efforts for the general public.
He holds a background in content creation, social media managing, and corporate communications, and has worked in B2B startups on soft skills analysis and business innovation. Outside SCI, he devotes part of his time advocating for sustainable mobility and equitable transportation.
Josep graduated in Journalism studies in 2014 from Pompeu Fabra University in Barcelona and has experience in news reporting and multilingual broadcasting for international media outlets, including an owned website on explanatory journalism.
Carmel Shachar, JD, MPH
SCI Leadership Team / Executive Director, Petrie-Flom Center
Carmel Shachar, JD, MPH, is the Executive Director of the Petrie-Flom Center for Health Law Policy, Biotechnology, and Bioethics at Harvard Law School.
Carmel’s scholarship focuses on law and health policy, in particular the regulation of value-based health care payment and delivery structures, access to care for vulnerable individuals, health care anti-discrimination law and policy, and the use of all-payer claims databases in health care research. Carmel is also a Lecturer at Law on Harvard Law School, where she co-teaches a course on “Health Care Rights in the Twenty-First Century.”
Carmel was previously a Clinical Instructor on Law at the Center for Health Law and Policy Innovation at Harvard Law School (CHLPI), where she helped lead CHLPI’s access to care and Affordable Care Act implementation work. During her time at CHLPI, Carmel focused on analyzing and translating health policy issues and opportunities for a broad range of audiences, including many federal and state-level health policy coalitions. She also coordinated and led a major multi-state initiative to document discriminatory benefit designs on the health insurance Marketplaces.
Carmel graduated cum laude from Harvard Law School, where she was a student fellow at the Petrie-Flom Center, and the Harvard T. H. Chan School of Public Health.
Ra’Shaun Nalls, MPA
Director of Community Engagement, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health / Leadership Team
Ra’Shaun Nalls has served as the director of community engagement within the Office of Diversity and Inclusion at the Harvard Chan School of Public Health since 2015. In addition to serving as an ambassador and connector between the school and the communities surrounding the Longwood Medical Area campus, he also is the co-director of the Leaders in Health Community Training Program, interim director of the Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Fellowship, a Rose Service-Learning Fellowship committee, and is a co-instructor for the SBS 501 Community-Based Participatory (CBPR) course. His professional background includes over 15 years working with Boston-area community-based nonprofit organizations with an emphasis on positive youth development, community organizing, and political advocacy. He has been acknowledged for his community service by the Action for Boston Community Development (ABCD), the Boston Foundation, Boston Police Department, Suffolk County District Attorney’s Office, and the Harvard Youth Violence Prevention Center.
Ra’Shaun holds a Master’s in Public Administration and a Bachelor of Arts in Community Studies, both from the University of Massachusetts Boston. He is currently a higher education administration doctoral student whose research interests include critical race theory, community-engaged scholarship, and faculty tenure and promotion.
SCI Leadership Team / Postdoctoral Fellow in Neurobiology, Harvard Medical School
Michelle Frank is a Postdoctoral Fellow in Neurobiology at Harvard Medical School with a secondary field in Science, Technology, and Society (STS) through the Harvard Kennedy School. She also serves on the executive boards of the science communication group Science in the News and Harvard’s GSAS Science Policy Group.
PhD candidate in Political Theory, Harvard Dept. of Govt. | Former nanocourse facilitator
Brian Palmiter is a Ph.D. candidate in Political Theory in the Harvard Department of Government. He has taught courses in bioethics, ethics, and public policy. As an Ethics Pedagogy Fellow at Harvard’s Edmond J. Safra Center for Ethics, he worked on developing innovative classroom interventions. Brian joined SCI to create the first edition of the Governance and Ethics of Biotechnology nanocourse series.
Martin Samuels, PhD
Head of Content, LabXchange | Former nanocourse curriculum developer
Marty Samuels is the Head of Content at LabXchange, a free online platform that curates high-quality content to inspire users to think of themselves as scientists. As a former Associate Director for Science at Harvard’s Derek Bok Center for Teaching and Learning, Marty aided in the design and delivery of the first edition of SCI’s Governance and Ethics of Biotechnology nanocourse series.
Climate Survey Project | Ph.D. candidate in Biological and Biomedical Sciences in Raul Mostoslavsky's lab at Harvard/MGH
Antonieta Salguero Rivera
Research on Best Practices in Program Evaluation | Ph.D. Candidate in Chemical Biology in the Lab of Dr. Phil Cole at HMS & BWH
Kee-Myoung (Chris) Nam
Landscape Analysis Project | Ph.D. Candidate in Systems, Synthetic, and Quantitative Biology at Gunawardena's Laboratory at HMS