|President||Varykina Thackray, PhD|
|Treasurer||Katherine (Kat) Chang, PhD|
|Member at Large||Angela Macia, PhD.|
|Member at Large||Robyn Wygal|
|Member at Large||Sigrid Katz, PhD|
|Member at Large||Michelle Muldong|
|Member at Large||Kamala Janiyani|
President: Varykina (Kina) Thackray, PhD
Secretary: Cynthia Kuan
Cynthia Kuan oversees business and clinic operations for the Sanford Stem Cell Clinical Center at UC San Diego Health. She is a founding member of the clinical center and has helped secure over $70 million funding from grants, contracts, and philanthropy for regenerative medicine research projects, ranging from basic science, translational medicine, to clinical research. She has over 13 years of experience in building/managing innovative programs and is seasoned in alliance management, strategic planning, program development, and financial oversight. Prior to joining UC San Diego Health, she helped build a Chinese immersion public charter school in Washington DC and a social service program in Los Angeles. In her free time, she enjoys traveling, trying new restaurants, and listening to audio books/podcasts.
Treasurer: Katherine (Kat) Chang, PhD
Kat Chang, PhD, is an Alliances and Partnerships Manager at Illumina. She earned her BS in Biosystems Engineering at University of Hawaii-Manoa, MS in Biological & Environmental Engineering at Cornell University, and PhD in Biology at University of California, San Diego/Salk Institute for Biological Studies. She is currently the treasurer for AWIS San Diego. Kat’s passion is to enable underserved communities and groups by increasing their access to STEAM educational/career opportunities. To play outside of work, Kat enjoys surfing, Polynesian dance, and traveling.
Member at Large: Angela Macia, PhD
Angela Macia is a Postdoctoral Researcher working at UC San Diego. She earned her Ph.D. in Biomedical Sciences from the University of Granada, Spain in 2015. Angela has a strong background both in transposable elements and stem cells. Her research focuses on modeling neurological diseases, such as Autism Spectrum Disorders, investigating how transposons contribute to the disease by using patient-derived neurons and 3D organoids. She is passionate about how AWIS-SD creates opportunities for women and girls in STEM and she has been part of the Corporate Sponsorship committee since 2017. Besides volunteering for AWIS-SD, Angela enjoys traveling, reading and cooking.
Member at Large: Robyn Wygal
Robyn Wygal, joined AWIS San Diego in 2011. She is the current Public Relations Chair and Outreach Community Engagement Chair and works to highlight and expand our AWIS San Diego network. She has also held positions such as the AWIS SD Outreach Co-Chair and STEM Career Conference Co-Director. In her professional career Robyn is a research data analyst with a BS in biology and a minor degree in business and 10 + years of experience managing projects and data communication with multi-level & multi-departmental interfaces and collaborations. She brings both a scientific & business mindset to the discovery and communication of data insight in attaining strategic outcomes. Her passions include the intersection of data science, research, genomics, and healthcare, and she enjoys the challenge of communicating insight through the lens of human perception, behavior, and connection. Fundamentally, she is a biologist, captivated by discovery and novel data play. Her scientific research interests (and challenges) include understanding and interpreting the diverse layers of genetic and epigenetic influence on regulatory networks in the context of immunity, chronic disease, and cancer progression through bioinformatics and data visualization. When not exploring the latest data tools and techniques, or reading publications by amazing STEM innovators, she can be found running, hiking, or biking all over San Diego.
Member at Large: Sigrid Katz, PhD
Dr. Katz's bio is forthcoming.
Member at Large: Michelle Muldong
Michelle Muldong is a Research Associate at the University of California San Diego’s Moores Cancer Center. She works in Dr. Christina Jamieson’s lab studying bone-metastatic prostate cancer performing in vivo and in vitro experiments utilizing patient derived samples.
Michelle obtained her B.S. from the University of California San Diego with a degree in General Biology. She has been involved in AWIS since September 2019 and is passionate about teaching the next generation about STEM.
Outside of lab Michelle enjoys hot yoga, hiking, snowboarding, iced coffee & hanging out with her French bulldog/Boston Terrier mix pup- Stitch!