President DeeAnn Visk
Secretary Nellie Shaul
Treasurer Lori Yang
Past Treasurer Christina Niemeyer
Member at Large Kirsten Kirchsteiger
Member at Large Kristina Bompiani-Myers
Member at Large Alex Clark
Member at Large Leslie Crews-Robertson

President: DeeAnn Visk

DeeAnn2016DeeAnn Visk, PhD, is a freelance medical writer and editor living in the San Diego area. She enjoys writing for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology News on biotechnology innovations. Her areas of expertise include: high throughput screening, microscopy, genetics, molecular diagnostics, and molecular biology. DeeAnn is experienced in writing: Peer-reviewed scientific research articles, posters, keynote and conference presentations, SOPs, white papers, case studies, news articles, and blogs. As president of AWIS-SD, you can reach her This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..





Secretary: Nellie Shaul

Nellie Nellie is currently a graduate student at the Scripps Institution of Oceanography (SIO) at the University of California, San Diego, where she is finishing her Ph.D. in marine chemistry. She began studying environmental chemistry at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville, where she obtained a B.S. in Chemistry, a B.S. in Biology, and a M.S. in Chemistry while studying the association of placental levels of persistent organic pollutants (POPs) and low birth weight. Because of her Ph.D. work and the collaborations she fostered through my committee, a Center for Oceans and Human Health was funded at SIO, UCSD, and San Diego State University that is investigating the potential sources of these natural POPs and their relationship to legacy and emerging POPs in the Southern California Bight region. Outside of her research, Nellie has been heavily involved in teaching and outreach activities. She has been a long-standing member of the AWIS outreach committee. She is also on the planning committee and board for the annual Expanding Your Horizons conference aimed to interest girls, aged 11 to 16, in science, math, and engineering. In her free time, Nellie enjoys camping, running, and hiking.

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Treasurer: Lori Yang

Lori Yang, PhD, is co-founder and CSO of Glycosensors and Diagnostics, a biotech company providing enabling technologies for applications in glycoscience.

She earned her BS in Chemistry from the University of Virginia and her PhD in Molecular Biophysics and Biochemistry from Yale University.

Lori has been a member of AWIS-SD since 2012. She served on the WIST 2015 Publications Committee. She joined the AWIS-SD board as treasurer in 2016.

Click here to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. Lori.



Past Treasurer: Christina Niemeyer


Christina Niemeyer is Associate at i2 Grants Associates, a woman-owned and operated, California-based team with years of experience identifying and securing grants for emerging companies and non-profit organizations in the life sciences. Christina has served as Laboratory Director at both Sanford-Burnham Medical Research Institute and Salmedix, where she played a critical role in developing the approved oncology drug Treanda. Christina earned her Ph.D. at Bayor College of Medicine in cell biology and her B.S. from Texas A&M University in microbiology, where she graduated magna cum laude.

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Member at Large: Kerstin Kirchsteiger

Kerstin Kerstin has been a member of AWIS and active volunteer on the Corporate Sponsorship Committee since October 2012, member of WIST speakers committee and Co-chair of Open House Committee last year. Since January 2015 she took on the role of Co-chairs on our Corporate Sponsorship Committee.

Kerstin Kirchsteiger received her MSc in Chemistry at the University of Vienna, Austria. Then moved to southern Spain where she completed her Ph.D. in Plant Molecular Biology and Biochemistry, studying redox regulation and signaling in the chloroplast. In 2009 she moved to San Diego to study protein degradation by the ubiquitin proteasome system and hormone signaling in plants at UCSD.

When not working you can find her on the trails in and around San Diego, be it hiking or mountain biking. Currently she is actively seeking opportunities in the Biotech Industry. To email, click  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..


Member at Large: Kristina Bompiani-Myers

kristin Kristin Bompiani ( is a research scientist with a keen interest in translational research. After receiving her PhD in Genetics from Duke University in 2012, she completed postdocs at The Scripps Research Institute in Chemistry and the University of San Diego California in Cancer Therapeutics. She now works at InhibRx developing antibody therapeutics as the Molecular Biology group leader.

Serving on the AWIS Outreach Committee for 3 years, Kristin applied her passion for science to help develop and execute programs to engage the local youth community. Such programs include judging the annual San Diego Science and Engineering fair and performing science demonstrations at local STEM events. She lives in San Diego with her husband and cat and is often baking decadent things when not in the lab. Click This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. to email Kristina.




Member at Large: Alex Clark

LizC2016 Alex is a postdoc at UCSD in the Department of Cellular and Molecular Medicine studying host-viral interactions during Zika Virus and Human Cytomegalovirus infections.

Alex obtained a B.S. in Biology from Purdue University and a Ph.D. from the UCSD Biology Department studying the interplay between Cytomegalovirus and the host cell cycle.

Outside of the lab, Alex enjoys photography, running, and all things sci-fi. Alex became a member of AWIS in 2014 and has been a co-chair of the Website Committee since 2015 and also served on the WIST 2015 Committee.






Member at Large: Leslie Crews Robertson

leslieCrews Leslie Crews Robertson is a third-generation native San Diegan and scientist with a passion for stem cell biology. She received her undergraduate degree from UCLA and PhD from UCSD. As a project scientist at the Sanford Consortium for Regenerative Medicine (UCSD), Leslie’s research interests focus on understanding the molecular mechanisms that cause tissue-specific stem cells to behave abnormally in age-related degenerative and malignant disorders. She has co-authored over 60 peer-reviewed research articles in the fields of neuroscience, hematology, and cancer. Leslie joined AWIS in 2010 and has been a Strategy Sessions committee member since 2013. In her spare time, Leslie also enjoys traveling, reading, cooking, creative writing, and Scottish Highland dancing.




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