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Building Tomorrow Now

Women in Science and Engineering Symposium

Past Event Symposium Biographies


Previous Keynotes

Dr. Victoria Coleman

Dr. Victoria Coleman

Chief Scientist of the Air Force

Dr. Victoria Coleman is the Chief Scientist of the United States Air Force, Arlington, Virginia. She serves as the Chief Scientific Adviser to the Secretary of the Air Force, Air Force Chief of Staff, and Chief of Space Operations. She provides assessments on a wide range of scientific and technical issues affecting the department’s mission. In this role, she identifies and analyzes technical issues, bringing them to the attention of department leaders. She interacts with other principals, operational commanders, combatant commands, acquisition, and science and technology communities...

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Dr. Toby Daly-Engel

Dr. Toby Daly-Engel

Assistant Professor, Ocean Engineering and Marine Sciences, Florida Institute of Technology

Dr. Daly-Engel’s research combines genomics with marine ecology to study the evolution of mating strategies in animals that invest heavily in reproduction, especially sharks and rays. She is interested in how reproductive behaviors, particularly from a female fitness perspective, interact with the environment to influence species, populations, and genomes. Her PhD work at the University of Hawaii explored the ecological and genetic effects of female promiscuity in sharks, a subject she expanded on using an insect model as a postdoctoral fellow at the University of Arizona. As an...

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Lieutenant General Veralinn Jamieson

Lieutenant General Veralinn Jamieson

Deputy Chief of Staff for Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance

Lt. Gen. VeraLinn “Dash” Jamieson is the Deputy Chief of Staff for Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance, Headquarters U.S. Air Force, Washington, D.C. She is responsible to the Secretary and Chief of Staff of the Air Force for policy formulation, planning, evaluation, oversight, and leadership of Air Force intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance capabilities. As the Air Force's senior intelligence officer she is directly responsible to the Director of National Intelligence and the Under Secretary of Defense for Intelligence. She leads five directorates and...

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Major General Angela Salinas (USMC, Retired)

Major General Angela Salinas (USMC, Retired)

CEO, Girl Scouts of Southwest Texas

Angie Salinas, Major General U.S. Marine Corps (Ret.) joined Girl Scouts of Southwest Texas as the Chief Executive Officer in July 2015. Prior to becoming the CEO, she served in the U.S. Marine Corps for 39 years. A woman of many firsts, she made history as the first Latina selected and promoted to the general officer ranks in the U.S. Marine Corps. At the time of her retirement in September 2013, she was the senior ranking woman and the senior Hispanic in the Corps. A Girl Scout alumna, Salinas is a role model to girls and women seeking to break through the glass ceiling. She commanded at...

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NaShara Mitchell

NaShara Mitchell

Success Advocate

NaShara Mitchell is a SUCCESS advocate reframing gaps to opportunities for women and the underrepresented. Formally, NaShara is a Lecturer in the Lacy School of Business at Butler University where her work focuses on experiential learning, entrepreneurship and people-centered innovation. In 2018, she was named Professor of the Year by the MBA program. Considering business and education as forms of social justice and catalysts for social innovation, she is also the founder of Studio B Creative Exchange, an enterprise and experience studio.  She currently serves on the board of directors...

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Lieutenant General Stayce D. Harris

Lieutenant General Stayce D. Harris

Assistant Vice Chief of Staff and Director, Air Staff

Lt. Gen. Stayce D. Harris is the Assistant Vice Chief of Staff and Director, Air Staff, Headquarters U.S. Air Force, Washington, D.C. She also serves as Deputy Chairman of the Air Force Council, and is the Air Force accreditation official for the international Corps of Air Attachés. Gen. Harris received a commission in the Air Force through the University of Southern California's Air Force ROTC program. She served on active duty until joining the Air Force Reserve in 1991. Her staff assignments include serving as a mobility force planner for the Deputy Chief of Staff for Plans and...

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Dr. Dana Born (Brigadier General, USAF, Retired)

Dr. Dana Born (Brigadier General, USAF, Retired)

Chair, Senior Executive Fellows (SEF) Program Faculty Advisor, Black Family Graduate Fellows & National Security Fellows Lecturer in Public Policy

Dana H. Born Faculty Chair, Senior Executive Fellows (SEF) Program; Faculty Advisor, Black Family Fellowship; Lecturer in Public Policy, Harvard Kennedy School of Government) is a retired Brigadier General with 30 years of service in the United States Air Force. Prior to coming to Harvard, from 2004-2013, she served two terms as the Dean of the Faculty at the United States Air Force Academy where she was also the Professor and Head of the Behavioral Sciences and Leadership Department. Previously, Dana served as an Exchange Officer with the Royal Australian Air Force, Assistant Director...

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Dr. Gioia Massa

Dr. Gioia Massa

NASA Project Scientist & Plant Scientist, Kennedy Space Center

Dr. Gioia Massa works on food crop production for the International Space Station and future space exploration endeavors.  She led the science team for the initial Veggie hardware validation on the space station.  Currently she heads an interdisciplinary group to study fertilizer and light impacts on yield, nutrition, flavor, and food safety of Veggie-grown crops, and to assess crew behavioral health benefits from space crop growth.  In addition to Veggie, she helps with science needs for other space station hardware and works with external investigators to help their science...

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General Janet C. Wolfenbarger (Retired)

General Janet C. Wolfenbarger (Retired)

Retired USAF Commander

General (Ret) Janet C. Wolfenbarger retired from the Air Force in July 2015. In her last assignment before retirement she served as Commander, Air Force Materiel Command, Wright- Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio. The command employs some 80,000 people and manages $60 billion annually, executing the critical mission of warfighter support through leading-edge science and technology, cradle-to-grave life cycle weapon systems management, world-class developmental test and evaluation, and world-class depot maintenance and supply chain management. She was commissioned in 1980 as a graduate of the...

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Dr. Rengin Gök

Dr. Rengin Gök

Staff Scientist, Atmospheric, Earth, and Energy Division

Dr. Gök is a staff scientist in the atmospheric, earth, and energy division, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, and holds a PhD in Geophysics from Bogazici University in Instanbul, Turkey.  Dr. Gök is responsible for managing the seismic cooperation program for International Seismic Engagement in the Middle East, Central Asia, Southeast Asia and the Caucasus region.   She builds partner capacity for Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty implementation and develops models for seismic monitoring and seismic hazard assessment. Her research interests include developing...

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Dr. Hope Hubbard

Dr. Hope Hubbard

Hepatologist

Hope Hubbard is a native Texan and received her medical degree from Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, Texas. She completed her internal medicine residency and hepatology fellowship at Baylor College of Medicine, and a gastroenterology fellowship at Ohio State University in Columbus, Ohio. She is board certified in gastroenterology. She is an Associate Professor of Medicine at UT Health San Antonio and is hepatology director at the Robert B. Green clinic. She is currently licensed to practice medicine in Texas and Ohio. She is affiliated with South Texas Veterans Health Care System and...

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Mae Krier

Mae Krier

Mae Krier was born in North Dakota in the 1920's. Calvin Coolidge was President and it was during the Great Depression and the infamous Dust Bowl. Times were really difficult for everyone, not just the ones in the Middle West. Our family was poor, but a happy family with very loving and generous parents. When someone would be down and out, they would take them in or help them through the bad times. That was the way of life during those years. Things didn't start to get better until Roosevelt brought in programs like the WPA and the CCC's. They were great programs to help bring us out of the...

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Dr. Siobhan Malany

Dr. Siobhan Malany

Associate Professor, University of Florida

Dr. Siobhan Malany came to Florida from California, where she worked for several years in the biotechnology industry advancing novel drug compounds to treat neurological and metabolic disorders. In Florida, she discovered her passion for space medicine. She founded Micro-gRx, a company focused on study the effects of microgravity on human muscle myocytes using an automated miniature laboratory called a lab-on-a-chip system to model age-related musculoskeletal disease. Her team launched the lab-on-a-chip payload on the NG-10 vehicle in November 2018 and is now part of an initiative funded by...

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The Honorable Heather Wilson

The Honorable Heather Wilson

24th Secretary of the Air Force

Doctor Heather Wilson is the 24th Secretary of the Air Force and is responsible for the affairs of the Department of the Air Force, including the organizing, training and equipping and providing for the welfare of 660,000 active-duty, Guard, Reserve, and civilian forces as well as their families. She oversees the Air Force’s annual budget of more than $132 billion and directs strategy and policy development, risk management, weapons acquisition, technology investments and human resource management across a global enterprise. Wilson has more than 35 years of professional experience in...

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Previous Speakers

Colonel Katharine G. Branson

Colonel Katharine G. Branson

Commander, Air Force Technical Applications Center, Patrick Space Force Base, Florida

Colonel Katharine G. Branson is the Commander, Air Force Technical Applications Center, Patrick Space Force Base, Fla. AFTAC operates and maintains the United States Atomic Energy Detection System to monitor foreign compliance with various treaties limiting nuclear testing. The focus of AFTAC’s more than 1,000 professionals is to detect special events in the atmosphere, underwater, underground, and in space to determine if they are nuclear and to report them to U.S. senior decision makers. Colonel Branson earned her commission through the Air Force Reserve Officer Training Corps...

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Mr. Simon Sinek

Mr. Simon Sinek

Optimist and Author

Described as “a visionary thinker with a rare intellect,” Simon has devoted his professional life to help advance a vision of the world that does not yet exist; a world in which the vast majority of people wake up every single morning inspired, feel safe wherever they are and end the day fulfilled by the work that they do. He shares his ideas through his books: •Start With Why: How Great Leaders Inspire Everyone to Take Action, a global bestseller (with over 1 million books sold in the U.S. alone) •Leaders Eat Last: Why Some Teams Pull Together and Others...

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Jeanette Pirlo

Jeanette Pirlo

PhD Student, Vertebrate Paleontology

Jeanette Pirlo is a part of the MacFadden Lab at the University of Florida, in the Vertebrate Paleontology range of Florida Museum of Natural History.  She studies a group of extinct elephant relatives, Gomphotheres and Mastodons, that once roamed Florida and are found as fossils at her locality of interest, approximately 5-6 million years ago.  Jeanette’s work focuses broadly on understanding the paleoecology of Central Florida during the Late Miocene, during a period of time before sea levels began to rise and flood the Florida platform. Her research will help inform how...

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Dr. Mihan House McKenna Taylor

Dr. Mihan House McKenna Taylor

Senior Research Scientist (Near-Surface Phenomenology), US Army Engineer Research and Development Center, Vicksburg, Mississippi

Recipient of the 2013 USACE Researcher of the Year award for innovative remote monitoring of structures, Dr. McKenna Taylor specializes in bringing reality to intelligent decision making. She leads multi-disciplinary near-surface phenomenology research to create adaptive, effective, and revolutionary tools and scientific programs to shape future operational environments, including terrain shaping and near-surface persistent surveillance. Using geophysics and geotechnical engineering to proactively manipulate and assess the near-surface interface, she executes and fosters research to meet...

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Pamela Garcia

Pamela Garcia

Launch Engineer - SpaceX

Pamela Garcia is a Launch Engineer at SpaceX.  She is the first female certified Launch Controller at SpaceX, one of two operators to launch Falcon Heavy, and is responsible for autonomous pad turnaround operations.  Pam has been the primary controller for over 50 launches for the Falcon 9 and Falcon Heavy rockets; a role in which she is solely responsible for all ground system functions and vehicle interactions during and after launch countdown.  As a member of the Launch Operations Development team, she focuses on achieving SpaceX's long-term goal of creating the world's...

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Lieutenant Colonel Angel Lugo

Lieutenant Colonel Angel Lugo

Chief, Policy And Sustainment, Air Force Diversity and Inclusion Office

Lieutenant Colonel Angel J. Lugo is the Chief, Policy and Sustainment Divison, Directorate of Diversity and Inclusion, Manpower, Personnel & Services, Headquarters Air Force, implementating the Air Force’s strategic vision, priorites, and goals for Air Force diversity and inclusion. The directorate is responsible for creating sustainable change throughout the Air Force while integrating diversity and inclusion-focused leadership with operational, functional and talent management strategies and processes. After serving twelve years in the enlisted ranks, Colonel Lugo received his...

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Patricia Sudol

Patricia Sudol

CAPT, United States Navy (Retired)

CAPT Pat Sudol was one of the first women to enter the Naval Academy in 1976, graduating in 1980 with a degree in Oceanography.  As women were not permitted to serve on combatant ships at that time, she was assigned to USS HOLLAND (AS 32), a Submarine Repair Ship, where she served as their first female Repair Department Division Officer, the Engineering Department Electrical Officer, and as the Operations Department Head during the ship’s circumnavigation of the globe.  She qualified as a Surface Warfare Officer, and was selected to go to Department Head School to prepare...

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Kursten O'Neill

Kursten O'Neill

Falcon Fleet Strategy Manager - SpaceX

Kursten O’Neill is new to the Space Coast as the Falcon Fleet Strategy Manager after spending 5 years working at the SpaceX headquarters in Los Angeles, California. She started at SpaceX back in 2013 as a Certification Engineer leading NASA and Air Force Falcon certification efforts until 2016 when she was promoted to a Falcon Vehicle Lead. In that new role, she managed the introduction of the Falcon Block 5 vehicle from conception through production, test and launch. Once all heritage vehicles retired, Kursten’s role expanded to manage the Falcon Block 5 fleet as the Falcon...

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Susan Broderick Mallett

Susan Broderick Mallett

Aerospace/STEM Educator

Susan Broderick Mallett is a retired teacher, administrator and university instructor with an educational tenure of 31 years in Alabama schools. As a public school principal, she led a nationally and internationally-recognized elementary school that integrated the aerospace theme throughout the curriculum. Since 2006 she has served as the Youth Development and Air Force Association (AFA) Programs Coordinator at the National HQ of the Civil Air Patrol at Maxwell Air Force Base, AL.   In her position at CAP, Ms Mallett works across the country to coordinate free CAP airplane orientation...

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Col Sarah Cleveland

Col Sarah Cleveland

Commander, 709th Support Group

Colonel Sarah U. Cleveland is the Commander, 709th Support Group, Air Force Technical Applications Center (AFTAC), Patrick Air Force Base, Fla. She leads a 440-person group responsible for providing cyber operations, agile software maintenance, configuration management, logistics, supply, central repair, remote sensor maintenance, personnel, facility, emergency management and postal support for the more than 1,000 Airmen assigned to the center. The group also operates and sustains the U.S. Atomic Energy Detection System, enabling AFTAC’s global treaty monitoring mission to support...

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Dr. Mary D'Ambrosio

Dr. Mary D'Ambrosio

Animal Emergency & Critical Care Center of Brevard

Mary D’Ambrosio (previously Mary Jackson) and is a Board Certified Veterinary Criticalist at Animal Specialty and Emergency Center of Brevard.  She grew up in central Missouri where she developed a love for all animals and an appreciation for the doctors that kept ours healthy.  After completing an undergraduate degree in Animal Science, she was accepted to the University of Missouri College of Veterinary Medicine.  Upon completion of her DVM, she accepted a rotating Internship position at Coral Springs Animal Hospital in Coral Springs, FL to learn all about small...

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Lakisha Robertson

Lakisha Robertson

Lakisha Robertson is currently assigned to the Air Force Personnel Center, Talent Acquisitions Division, Recruiting Branch, and has over 10 years of Human Resources experience.  Specializing in staffing and recruitment, she is responsible for identifying "top" talent for the Air Force Civilian Service Acquisition Workforce.  Lakisha guides a Team of dedicated professionals whose primary task, is to seek-out potential candidates for STEM related vacancies. With a Bachelor's Degree in Management and a passion for recruiting, she takes great pride in cultivating relationships with...

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Dr. Abby Bickley

Dr. Abby Bickley

Assistant Professor of Nuclear Engineering

More information coming soon!

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Ilana Lu

Ilana Lu

Materials & Process Engineer- Blue Origin

Ilana Lu is a Materials and Process Engineer for Blue Origin where she is part of a cutting-edge team performing friction stir welding for the New Glenn Rocket. Ilana graduated in 2017 from University of South Carolina, Columbia, with her bachelor’s of science degree in Mechanical Engineering. While there, she performed research with friction stir welding of aluminum alloys and graduated in 2019 with a master’s degree in Mechanical Engineering. Afterwards, Ilana partnered with GKN Aerospaceattended at Oak Ridge National Laboratory while she was attending graduate...

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Dr. Bianca Barbu

Dr. Bianca Barbu

Operational Analyst, NATO Headquarters Supreme Allied Command Transformation

Dr. Bianca Barbu works as an Operational Analyst, in the Operational Analysis Branch at NATO Headquarters Supreme Allied Command Transformation (HQ SACT) in Norfolk, VA. She employs a combination of defense analysis, experiments and parallel studies to understand the context of NATO’s operational problems, the associated war-fighting impact of implementing various solutions, and the requirements for new capabilities. Her work is dedicated to bringing modern science and technology to bear on defense problems and finding feasible courses of action, while generating information and...

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Dr. Phillip Brown

Dr. Phillip Brown

Professor, Clemson University

Phil Brown, a professor in the School of Materials Science and Engineering at Clemson University, joined the faculty in January 2002. He earned a BSc in 1987 and received a Ph.D. from The School of Textile Industries in Leeds in 1991. After a few years of research work, including 1.5 years at Herriot Watt University as a teaching/research fellow, he went back to Leeds as a lecturer in the School of Textile Industries at Leeds University. Phil’s current research interests include, but are not limited to, fiber spinning and the production of deep groove capillary surface channeled...

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Carmen L. De Leon-Acosta

Carmen L. De Leon-Acosta

Manufacturing Engineer - Blue Origin

Carmen L. De Leon-Acosta is a Manufacturing Engineer for Blue Origin where she is part of a cutting-edge team performing manufacturing and test in support of the New Glenn Rocket. She has deployed on several occasions supporting Operation Iraqi Freedom, Operation Enduring Freedom, and Horn of Africa. Carmen was born in Atlantic City, New Jersey on October 10 1981.  She was raised in Providence, Rhode Island, graduating from East Providence Senior High School.  She continued her education at the University of Rhode Island for a year and a half, then decided to change course and...

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Dr. Oneeka Williams

Dr. Oneeka Williams

Surgeon, Author, Mentor

Dr. Oneeka Williams is on a mission to ‘Educate, Empower and Enrich’ the lives of children, especially girls towards a greater interest in Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Math. As Founder and President of Dr. Dee Dee Dynamo LLC, Dr Williams has developed a mechanism to engage children in the joys of science at an early age. Her belief is that by planting the seeds of curiosity, incorporating science content into an entertainment platform and delivering the message in the form of a powerful, confident girl character, she will be create early imprinting of what is...

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Dr. Virginia A. Davis

Dr. Virginia A. Davis

Daniel F. and Josephine Breeden Professor, Department of Chemical Engineering, Auburn University

Dr. Virginia Davis is the Daniel F. and Josephine Breeden Professor in Auburn University’s Department of Chemical Engineering. Her interest in STEM started with doing science and engineering fair projects. She earned her Ph.D. in Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering from Rice University in 2006 under the guidance of Professor Matteo Pasquali and the late Nobel Laureate Richard E. Smalley. She received her bachelor of science in engineering and masters of engineering from Tulane University’s Department of Chemical Engineering. Between her BSE and PhD degrees, she worked for...

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Deborah Bortolin

Deborah Bortolin

Imagineer

Deborah Bortolin is a Sr Facility Designer at Walt Disney Imagineering, where she works as an architectural lead, overseeing design  anagement and coordination. In her role, Deborah also interfaces with other stakeholders for the overall implementation of the project and supports adherence to project strategies to guarantee successful results. She began working at Walt Disney Imagineering in 2017 as a project architect for Tron Lightcycle Power Run at Magic Kingdom. Prior to her time as an Imagineer, Deborah recently worked as a studio director at Architecture Plus International where...

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Julie Smith

Julie Smith

Senior Research Physicist Air Force Research Laboratory Space Vehicles Directorate

Julie Smith is a Senior Research Physicist for the Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL), Space Vehicles Directorate.  Julie received her Master’s degree in Physics from the University of New Mexico in 2008 and began working for AFRL’s Directed Energy Directorate at Starfire Optical Range right after.  For 7 years in the Directed Energy Directorate, Julie worked on advances in atmospheric propagation, atmospheric modeling and simulation, MEMS technology, adaptive optics, quantum communications and optical communications.  In 2015 Julie moved to AFRL’s Space...

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Ms. Priscilla Moore

Lead, College Projects, NASA Internship and Fellowships

Priscilla Moore serves as the Lead, for the College Projects Team in the Academic Engagement Office at NASA’s John F. Kennedy Space Center, (KSC) Florida. Ensuring NASA Internships are award to eligible students in order to support educational opportunities that provide unique NASA-related research and operational experiences for high school, undergraduate, and graduate students, as well as educators. These opportunities serve students by integrating interns with career professionals emphasizing mentor-directed, degree-related tasks, while contributing to the operation of a NASA...

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Veronica Perez Herrera

Veronica Perez Herrera

Engineer

Ms. Veronica graduated from Florida Polytechnic University in May 2018 with a Mechanical Engineering degree.  In college, she was the Founding President of the Society of Women Engineers (SWE) collegiate section.  She created an inclusive culture on campus that empowers and mentors female students.  The club focused on mentorship and also hosted several Lab Days at Florida Poly for low income students that encourage them to pursue a STEM degree.  Hundreds of students participated in STEM activities that were conducted by college students and industry professionals, such...

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Dr. Dana Joseph, UCF

Dr. Dana Joseph, UCF

Dr. Dana Joseph is an assistant professor in the College of Business at the University of Central Florida. She has a Ph.D. in Organizational Psychology from the University of Illinois with a minor in Quantitative Psychology. Her research involves using state-of-the-art quantitative techniques to investigate management “fads” including emotional intelligence and employee engagement. Her research has been published in top journals in the field (e.g., Journal of Applied Psychology, Emotion, and Organizational Research Methods) and has been highlighted in the American Psychological...

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Ms. Sarah Metott

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Dr. Amacitia Maloon-Gibson

Dr. Amacitia Maloon-Gibson

Speaker, Trainer and Executive Consultant

Dr. Amicitia (Cita) Maloon-Gibson is an executive consultant, speaker, author, and certified mediator and life coach. She established MGAA-Professional Development Institute (PDI) to help others develop strategies for mastering business, careers, life and relationships.  Known as “The Empowerment Doc,” Dr. Gibson shares effective strategies for leadership and empowerment through her keynotes, seminars, Leadership Academy and Advanced Leadership Masterminds and Retreats. Dr. Gibson’s audience is diverse and includes a spectrum of clients in North America and abroad...

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Darcy Lutes

Darcy Lutes

Raised by scuba diving parents who taught her to value and respect the ocean, Darcy donned her first scuba tank at age 9 and blew bubbles in the backyard swimming pool. She told everyone afterward that she was going to break out of Oklahoma and become a marine biologist. Darcy earned a BS in Marine Biology from the University of North Carolina Wilmington and an MS in Environmental Science from the University of Oklahoma. Her research experience includes studying coral recruitment and larval development in Key Largo and Puerto Rico, tagging and rehabilitating sea turtles in the Carolinas...

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Ms. Laurie Whittaker

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Julia Ignacek

Julia Ignacek

Deputy Director, Strategic Integration Directorate

Julia S. Ignacek is the Deputy Director, Strategic Integration Directorate, Air Force Technical Applications Center (AFTAC), Patrick Air Force Base, Florida. AFTAC operates and maintains the United States Atomic Energy Detection System to monitor foreign compliance with various treaties limiting nuclear testing. In her role as Deputy Director, Ms. Ignacek provides technical oversight and program management support for the organization’s innovative and applied research programs, novel concept development, and strategic partnership development supporting the verification of nuclear...

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Dr. Andrew Aldrin

Dr. Andrew Aldrin

Dr. Andrew Aldrin is currently an Associate Professor at Florida Institute of Technology (FIT) and Director of the Buzz Aldrin Space Institute (BASI). BASI is a multidisciplinary institute created to advance space exploration and development toward the goal of establishing and maintaining a permanent human presence on Mars. Prior to FIT, Dr. Aldrin was President of Moon Express. Dr. Aldrin was Director of Business Development and Advanced Programs at United Launch Alliance and served in a similar position at Boeing’s NASA Systems, and Launch Services business units. He has also served...

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Ms. Stacey Lazelle

Chemistry STEM Outreach Educator, U.S. Air Force Academy

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Elaine Larsen

Elaine Larsen

President of Larsen Motorsports, Elaine Larsen, has over two decades of racing experience. Finding her home behind the wheel of a jet powered dragster, she lives her life at full-throttle. STEAM ambassador, championship driver of the Florida Tech jet dragster, comic book creator and mentor are just a few of Elaine’s roles. Giving young ladies an opportunity to get hands-on experience in the high-performance vehicles industry, she inspires the next generation of motorsports professionals to have the Guts to go for the Glory!

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Major General Amy S. Courter

Major General Amy S. Courter

Amy S. Courter served as the National Commander and CEO of the all-volunteer Civil Air Patrol, a federally chartered nonprofit corporation and the civilian auxiliary of the U.S. Air Force headquartered at Maxwell Air Force Base, AL from 2007-2011. Her primary duty was to lead CAP’s 61,000-plus volunteers in fulfillment of the organization’s three congressionally chartered missions: Emergency Services, Cadet Programs and Aerospace Education, as well as CAP’s increasing role in America’s homeland security. As CAP’s commander, Courter served as a Major General...

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Lisa R. Sanders

Lisa R. Sanders

Director of Science and Technology

Ms. Lisa R. Sanders is the Director of Science and Technology for Special Operations Forces, Acquisition, Technology & Logistics (SOF AT&L), U.S. Special Operations Command (USSOCOM), MacDill Air Force Base, Florida. She is responsible for all research and development funded activities. Ms. Sanders has over 30 years of civilian Federal service. Ms. Sanders entered Federal Service as an Electronics Engineer at Naval Avionics Center in Indianapolis, Indiana where she served in quality engineering, production engineering and program management. In 1996, she transferred to Naval Air...

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Dr. Monica Allen

Dr. Monica Allen

Senior Research Electronics Engineer

Monica Allen is a is a Senior Research Electronics Engineer at the Munitions Directorate, Air Force Research Laboratory, Eglin Air Force Base, Florida. Her research focuses on resonant sensing platforms for EO/IR technologies and components that can find applications in detection and sensing. Her primary areas of interest include nonlinear optical, photonic, and plasmonic physics concepts through the exploitation of light-matter interactions. Her other research interests include investigation of nonlinear optical phenomena and quantum photonic devices at infrared wavelengths. Her current...

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Dr. Janet S. Fender

Dr. Janet S. Fender

Scientific Adviser to the Commander, Air Combat Command, Langley Air Force Base, Virginia

Dr. Janet S. Fender, a senior level executive, is the Scientific Adviser to the Commander, Air Combat Command, Langley Air Force Base, Virginia. She serves as the Command Chief Scientist providing scientific expertise and technical guidance throughout ACC. As primary interface to the scientific community, Dr. Fender identifies leading edge technologies and catalyzes effective, rapid enhancements to ACC's warfighting capabilities. In previous positions at the Air Force Research Laboratory, Dr. Fender served as Chief Scientist for Space Vehicles and Senior Scientist for Advanced Imaging. Her...

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Angela Lamb

Angela Lamb

Director of Engineering

Angela Lamb is the Director of Engineering for Harris Corporation. Her responsibilities include establishing and improving engineering processes and tools; defining and driving productivity and quality measures; developing and enhancing technical career paths aligned with Harris’ growth strategies; identifying and managing technology partnerships with other companies and suppliers; and promoting the disciplined execution of projects within cost, schedule and technical constraints. Most recently, Lamb was Director of Engineering for Harris Corporation’s Critical Networks segment...

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Dr. Zina B. Sutch

Dr. Zina B. Sutch

Director of the Office of Diversity and Inclusion

Dr. Sutch serves as the Director of the Office of Diversity and Inclusion at the Office of Personnel Management where she leads the efforts of developing government-wide policies and guidance to assist Federal agencies in building diverse workforces and inclusive and engaged organizational cultures that leverage diversity, and provides expert advisory services to Federal agencies undergoing cultural transformation. Prior to serving in this capacity, Dr. Sutch held the position of Director of the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Office of the Executive Secretariat leading the...

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Mónica Groba López

Mónica Groba López

Secretary General

Monica Groba is the Secretary General of the National Geographic Institute (IGN), the national organization that manages Astronomy, Geophysics, Geodesy and Cartography facilities of the Spanish Government. The Secretary General is responsible for budget, procurement, human resources and Information and Communications Technologies (ICT) for the IGN. She coordinates central and peripheral centers, national and international projects and furnishes the legal support required. Through the Geographical Superior Council, the Secretary General has sole authority for management of the National...

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Christine Negroni

Christine Negroni

Journalist

Christine Negroni writes about aviation safety for The New York Times, Air & Space, Airways and other publications. She is the safety consultant to ABC News and worked with the network in Malaysia during its coverage of the disappearance of Malaysia 370. Her book about the accident has just been published by Penguin in the United States and Atlantic Books in the UK. She was the chief of investigations for the aviation law firm Kreindler & Kreindler from 2000 to 2008. Prior to that she covered aviation for CNN. Her work on the crash of TWA Flight 800 led her to write the New York...

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CAPT Winston Scott (Ret.)

CAPT Winston Scott (Ret.)

Retired U.S. Navy Captain and Aviator

Winston E. Scott is a retired U.S. Navy Captain, aviator and two-time shuttle astronaut and currently serves as special assistant to the president at Florida Institute of Technology.  He entered Naval Aviation Officers Candidate School in 1973 and completed flight training and was designated a naval aviator in 1974. Scott later earned his Master of Science degree in aeronautical engineering with avionics. During his Navy career, Captain Scott served as a helicopter pilot with Helicopter Anti-Submarine Warfare Squadron Light Thirty-Three at NAS North Island, CA. flying the...

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Click here to see our current symposium biographies.