Career Possibilities: Speed Networking Night


Do you want to define your value proposition, explore career possibilities, and be inspired by women who have grown their science and technology careers in different directions?

Join us for WEST’s annual Career Possibilities: Speed Networking Night!



Panel Discussion and Networking with the following women:

Jane Amara, Ph.D

Jane joined the Technology & Innovation Development Office at Boston Children's one year ago. As associate director, she is responsible for managing the daily operations of TIDO, working closely with others to translate Children's renowned laboratory and clinical research into devices, therapeutics, diagnostics, and informatics products that can benefit patients around the world. Her group’s activities include evaluating inventions, managing patent applications, promoting Children’s technology to companies, licensing technology, and helping to start companies. She loves the variety of inventiveness at the world's most active pediatric-centered research enterprise. Prior to joining TIDO, Jane worked for four years in venture capital, overseeing investments into university spin-out companies, including serving as a company director. Before that, she worked in biotech business development, including five years identifying, evaluating, and executing transactions at Biogen Idec. Her industry experience also includes research and project management responsibilities at start-up and established companies, including Genzyme and ARIAD Pharmaceuticals.  Jane earned a B.A. in Biology from the University of California, San Diego, and a Ph.D. in Pharmacology from Yale University. She was a postdoctoral fellow in the laboratory of Dr. Harvey F. Lodish at the Whitehead Institute.

Michaela Levin, PhD

Michaela is the Business Development Associate at Harvard Medical School Office. She joined the OTD in 2013. Prior to joining Harvard, Michaela worked at Addgene, a non-profit plasmid repository, where she served as European outreach scientist raising awareness for Addgene and developing new partnerships with partners in academia overseas. She was also a postdoctoral fellow at Boston Children’s Hospital where she conducted research in epilepsy examining the biophysical properties of hippocampal neurons in epilepsy and traumatic brain injury models. Michaela has a PhD in neuroscience form the University of Virginia, an MA of Music Performance from New York University, a Diploma in Jazz Performance from Berklee College of Music, and an MA in Education from Bremer Hochschule für Künste.

Deborah Palestrant, PhD

Deborah joined Third Rock Ventures in 2010. She focuses on new company formation and due diligence. Prior to joining Third Rock Ventures, Deborah was an x-ray crystallographer at the Novartis Institutes for Biomedical Research focusing on structure-based drug design. Before joining Novartis, she was a Damon-Runyon Cancer Research post-doctoral fellow at The Scripps Research Institute. Deborah holds a PhD in Biochemistry and Molecular Biophysics from Columbia University, an MBA from Northeastern University, and a BS in Biochemistry from UCLA.

Erika D. Reynoso, Ph.D.

Erika is a Senior Medical Communications Specialist within Medical Affairs at Vertex Pharmaceuticals Incorporated. At Vertex, she leads the development of all medical/scientific publications activities for the HCV franchise as well as oversees development of publications for the epilepsy and oncology therapeutic areas. In addition, she builds and maintains relationships with medical/scientific thought leaders and cross-functional teams to communicate and develop publication plans for the company. Prior to joining Vertex, she worked for two years as a Senior Analyst at Health Advances, LLC, a strategy and research consulting firm focused exclusively in the life science and healthcare industries. She worked with teams to actively advise clients from pharmaceutical, biotechnology, medical device, and diagnostic companies on R&D and commercial strategy, identification and prioritization of applications and indications for new products and technologies, clinical trial design, new product launch, and other areas. She has conducted research in the areas of innate immunity, oncology, autoimmunity, and inflammation. Erika holds a Ph.D. in immunology from Harvard University and a B.S. in microbiology, summa cum laude, from California State University Los Angeles.

Alice Rushforth, Ph.D.

Alice Rushforth is the Director of Biotechnology Education Programs at the Massachusetts Biotechnology Education Foundation (MassBioEd), a non-profit charitable organization committed to supporting STEM education with a focus in biotechnology in Massachusetts through school programs, workforce training, and lifelong learning. She joined the organization in January 2013 with extensive research experience in both academia and industry and as an educator.  From 2003-2010 she taught a range of undergraduate Biology courses at MIT and has been involved with K-12 science outreach and education programs for over ten year.  Prior to joining MassBioEd she served as Managing Director for the NSF-funded Science and Technology Center on Emergent Behaviors of Integrated Cellular Systems at MIT.  Alice earned a BA in Biology from Earlham College and a PhD in Genetics from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and was a postdoctoral fellow in the laboratory of Dr. Frank Solomon at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Sandra Glucksmann, Ph.D

This discussion will be moderated by Sandra Glucksmann, COO of GenEng and WEST Board Chair. She is the former Senior Vice President of Research and Development at Cerulean Pharma, which she joined in October 2006 at its founding. Prior to joining Cerulean, she spent 13 years at Millennium Pharmaceuticals which she joined in 1993 as one of its first scientists. At Millennium, she held a series of positions of increasing responsibility, ultimately becoming vice president of all platform technology groups before moving into a senior role in strategic program management and operations, where she worked closely with the CEO and led company-wide process improvement initiatives and participated in business development and M&A efforts. During her tenure at Millennium, Sandra was critical to helping Millennium evolve from a genomics research-focused organization to a fully integrated pharmaceuticals company with products on the market. Her division played an integral role in the numerous Millennium-large pharma collaborations, which raised over $1.8 billion in funding for the company. She is also a member of Genetics Advisory Council of the Harvard-Partners Center for Genetics and Genomics. Sandra was a post-doctoral fellow at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and holds a Ph.D. with honors from the University of Chicago.


Date and Time:  
December 10, 2013
6:00 - 9:00 PM



Microsoft, One Cambridge Center, 4th Floor, Cambridge, MA 02142



We appreciate Microsoft donating the use of their event space.





Members: $35; Non-Members: $55
A light dinner will be served.
To Register




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