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ChEM-H Staff

Ramy Abbady

Ramy Abbady, M.A.

Academic and Student Services Coordinator

Ramy Abbady joined Stanford ChEM-H in 2019. As the Academic and Student Services Coordinator, he primarily works with ChEM-H's training programs and works to support students throughout these programs. Prior to officially joining the Stanford community, Ramy earned his Master's degree in Higher Education and Student Affairs at the University of San Francisco; during his program, he interned with The Markaz at Stanford for two quarters. He also minored in physics as an undergraduate and has served as an academic advisor for science and engineering undergraduate students in his previous work.

Susan Carter

Susan Carter

Administrative Associate

Susan Carter joined Stanford ChEM-H in 2018. As the Administrative Associate, she supports ChEM-H faculty searches, Learning and Knowledge Centers, events, and day to day office requirements. Susan has been working with Stanford for over 12 years and brings along knowledge of Stanford administration systems. She likes to use new technologies and/or online tools to support work with minimal formal training.

Daniel Fernandez

Daniel Fernandez, Ph.D.

Research Scientist, Macromolecular Structure Knowledge Center

Dr. Daniel Fernandez was born and raised in a northeastern suburb of Buenos Aires, Argentina. He spent his formative years at the Department of Condensed Matter Physics of the Argentine National Atomic Energy Commission where he studied crystalline polymorphism and thermal stability of pharmaceutical compounds. His Licenciado dissertation was on the development of new inhibitors of the purine salvage pathway in Trypanosoma cruzi (American sleeping sickness causing agent). A recipient of an EC-funded doctoral scholarship, he then moved to the Universitat Autonoma de Barcelona, Barcelona, Spain, where his research focused on the identification of novel organic inhibitors and X-ray crystal structure determination of their complexes with metalloproteases. He earned his Ph.D. (Biotechnology) in 2009. In 2010, he joined the EMBL, Grenoble, France, where his research aimed at the discovery and X-ray structural characterization of abscisic acid agonists of Arabidopsis thaliana hormone receptors. After his postdoctoral training in Europe, he crossed the pond and joined Stanford ChEM-H in 2016 first as a postdoctoral scholar and then as a research scientist. Since February 2018, Dr. Fernandez co-manages the Macromolecular Structure Knowledge Center with Dr. Corey Liu.

Curt Fischer

Curt Fischer, Ph.D.

Head, Metabolic Chemistry Analysis Center

Dr. Curt Fischer joined Stanford ChEM-H and Stanford’s Genome Technology Center in 2015 as a research engineer and now serves as the Head of the Metabolic Chemistry Analysis Center. Dr. Fischer is a biochemical engineer who specializes in the analysis of metabolism. He has applied mass-spectrometry-based metabolomics and proteomics techniques to human gut microbes, extremopholic microbial communities, plant tissues, and clinical samples. Dr. Fischer earned a Ph.D. from MIT in 2009, and from 2009 to 2010 was a post-doctoral scholar at UC Berkeley. In 2011, he joined Ginkgo Bioworks as their 2nd full-time hire, and worked on a variety of publicly and privately funded projects in synthetic biology, metabolic engineering, and metabolomics.

>>ChEM-H MCAC website

Paul Humphries

Paul Humphries, Ph.D.

Alliance Director, Stanford Alliance for Innovative Medicines (AIM)

Dr. Paul Humphries joined Stanford ChEM-H in 2018 as the Alliance Director of the Stanford Alliance for Innovative Medicines (AIM). Dr. Humphries provides strategic leadership and management of the Stanford AIM program to accelerate the translation of Stanford research into next-generation treatments that impact human health. Dr. Humphries comes to ChEM-H with over 17 years of research and development experience, including leadership of target-based and phenotypic drug discovery programs ranging from target/phenotype identification to Phase 2 clinical trials. He has advanced eight compounds into the clinic. Prior to joining ChEM-H, Dr. Humphries worked as Chief Scientific Officer for Reset Therapeutics where he assumed full responsibility for all aspects of research and nonclinical development and focused on harnessing the power of the body’s internal molecular clocks to discover, develop, and commercialize high-value therapeutics for a variety of disease indications. Prior to this, Dr. Humphries worked at Pfizer on numerous drug discovery programs resulting in seven IND submissions across four late-stage projects and was responsible for numerous go/no go decisions on early stage projects. He has authored approximately 30 scientific articles and patents on a wide range of topics/drug targets. Dr. Humphries received his Ph.D. in organic chemistry from the University of Sheffield, UK and conducted post-doctoral research at Florida State University.

>>Stanford AIM website

Amy Jacobson

Amy Jacobson, Ph.D.

Scientific Program Manager - Microbiome

Dr. Amy Jacobson joined Stanford ChEM-H in 2019. As a Scientific Program Manager, she works on an initiative to support microbiome research at Stanford. Dr. Jacobson completed her Ph.D. in Chemistry and Chemical Biology at UCSF in the lab of Michael Fischbach studying the biosynthesis and structure of lipooligosaccharides produced by the human gut microbiota. She expanded on this work in her postdoctoral training at Stanford in the Fischbach lab to understand how these molecules interact with the innate immune system.

Corey Liu

Corey Liu, Ph.D.

Assistant Director, Knowledge Centers and Special Projects

Dr. Corey Liu joined Stanford ChEM-H in March 2016 to provide assistance with the ChEM-H Knowledge Centers. He completed his Ph.D. at the University of California, Berkeley, in 1998, in the laboratory of Prof. David Wemmer, focusing on solution-state biomolecular Nuclear Magnetic Resonance. Following a teaching post-doc in the UC-Berkeley College of Chemistry NMR facility, Dr. Liu came to Stanford University in October 1999 as the facility manager of the Stanford Magnetic Resonance Laboratory (School of Medicine high-field bio-NMR facility) under the direction of Prof. Joseph Puglisi. Since joining ChEM-H, Dr. Liu's role has expanded to special projects including assisting with laboratory planning for the new ChEM-H/Wu Tsai complex slated for completion in the second half of 2019.

Rebecca McClellan

Rebecca McClellan

Science Communications Specialist

Rebecca McClellan joined ChEM-H in 2018 as the Science Communications Specialist. She supports the goals of ChEM-H through writing news stories and press releases and developing content for the website and social media. A fourth year PhD student in the Department of Chemistry, Rebecca works in the lab of Robert Waymouth developing materials to deliver DNA and RNA into cells and has collaborated with labs in chemistry, engineering, and medicine. She was the recipient of a Stanford Graduate Fellowship and is currently a fellow through the Stanford Center for Molecular Analysis and Design, which supports a joint project with Paul Wender’s lab.

Catherine Meng

Catherine Meng

Financial Analyst

Catherine Meng joined ChEM-H in January 2018. As the Financial Analyst, she manages ChEM-H financial accounts, including budgeting and reporting, cost control and analysis subject to Stanford and Federal guidelines. Catherine has been with Stanford for over 10 years and brings with her extensive experience in research administration, client support and project management.

John Peters

John Peters

Teaching Assistant, Undergraduate Scholars Program

John Peters joined ChEM-H in January 2019 as the Teaching Assistant for the ChEM-H Undergraduate Scholars Program (CHEM 113: Interdisciplinary Approaches to Human Health Research). As Teaching Assistant, he facilitates weekly seminars for students in topics relating to primary literature review, scientific writing, and science communication. John is a 5th year PhD student in the Neurosciences Program at Stanford. He is a member of Dr. Axel Brunger's lab where he studies the molecular mechanism of long-term potentiation at synapses. John has previously served as the Teaching Assistant for Neuroscience Journal Club and Professional Development (NEPR 280) and is passionate about teaching and mentoring.

Elizabeth Ponder

Elizabeth Ponder, Ph.D.

Director of Planning and Operations

Dr. Elizabeth Ponder joined Stanford ChEM-H in 2014. As the Director of Planning and Operations, she leads all programmatic and operational activities for ChEM-H in partnership with the faculty executive committee. Dr. Ponder completed her Ph.D. and postdoctoral training at Stanford University in the laboratory of Dr. Matthew Bogyo. Her past work has included promoting public-private partnerships in the non-profit sector, managing multidisciplinary research in the higher education sector, and business development consulting in the for-profit biotech sector. Dr. Ponder joined ChEM-H from the University of California, Berkeley where she served as the Executive Director of the Henry Wheeler Center for Emerging & Neglected Diseases (CEND).

Beth Sefton

Beth Sefton, Ph.D.

Scientific Program Manager - Training and Research Development

Dr. Beth Sefton joined ChEM-H and Stanford in September 2019. As the Scientific Program Manager, she manages ChEM-H education and training programs, including the Chemistry-Biology Interface Predoctoral Training Program and the Undergrad Scholars Program. Prior to joining ChEM-H, Dr. Sefton managed a master’s program in Reproductive Science and Medicine and an ex-vivo microphysiologic systems project modeling the human female reproductive tract, both at Northwestern University. She studied the PI3K/AKT pathway in uterine leiomyoma during her PhD at Northwestern University. Dr. Sefton completed her undergraduate studies at the University of Tampa and is originally from Northern Virginia near Washington D.C.

Mark Smith, Ph.D.

Mark Smith, Ph.D.

Head, Medicinal Chemistry Knowledge Center

Dr. Mark Smith joined Stanford ChEM-H in May 2013 as the Head of the Medicinal Chemistry Knowledge Center. He graduated with a Ph.D. from the laboratory of Prof. Richard Stoodley at the University of Manchester Institute for Science and Technology (UMIST), where his research focused on the application of Lewis acid catalyzed hetero Diels-Alder reactions to the synthesis of novel disaccharide structures. In 2000, Dr. Smith joined the research laboratory of Prof. David Crich at the University of Illinois at Chicago. Here his research focused on the generation of new reagents for the synthesis of beta-mannosides from thioglycosides. From 2002 to 2013, Dr. Smith worked as a medicinal chemist in Roche’s research facilities both in Palo Alto, CA and then Nutley, NJ, where he specialized in antiviral research.

>>ChEM-H MCKC website

Shea Smith

Shea Smith

Clinical Research Coordinator and Operations Specialist

Shea Smith joined ChEM-H in June 2019 as part of a collaboration with Stanford Center for Clinical Research (SCCR). As a clinical research coordinator and operations specialist, she supports the coordination of multiple ChEM-H studies, including regulatory, recruitment, and other study operations. Shea has been working with Stanford for over 5 years and brings her extensive knowledge of research operations and project management.