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From Academia to Industry: Career Possibilities Networking Night

Tuesday, January 26, 2016 @ 5:30 pm - 8:00 pm

This event is for women and men within the scientific community — from undergrads to early career levels — who are interested in exploring diverse career options in science. Participants will have the opportunity to interact with experienced individuals who will give insight into their chosen professions.

Please note this is not a career fair.

5:30pm – 6:00pm Networking, registration, food and drinks
6:00pm – 6:15pm Opening remarks by Kevin O’Sullivan, President & CEO of Massachusetts Biomedical Initiatives (MBI)
6:15pm – 7:15pm Panel discussion and Q&A with industry professionals
7:15pm – 8:00pm One-on-one Q&A, additional networking, food, and drinks

Panelists (Bios Below):

  • Shelley Amster: Founder & Principal, ShelleyCO, LLC
  • Denise Aronson: Founder & President, Safety Partners, Inc.
  • Barbara Fox: PhD, Biotech Executive
  • Yael Schwartz: PhD, President and CEO, Or-Genix Therapeutics, Inc.
  • Jennifer King: Vice President Business Development, Intellia Therapeutics, Inc.

MASS AWIS Members $10 · Non-member $15


Shelley Amster

Shelley Amster has over 30 years of experience in life sciences, beginning as a scientist and evolving into a recognized business development leader and entrepreneur. She specializes in working with executives and entrepreneurs in building bridges to critical resources and pivotal business opportunities. Shelley was a pioneer in the infertility/IVF industry. In addition to having been one of the first IVF lab directors in the United States, Shelley helped commercialize multiple early IVF products and services and was instrumental in the growth of the New England Fertility Society membership, program offerings and fundraising success. She organized, unified and continues to lead the Mass CRO/CMO cluster community, a growing force of more than 200 independent life sciences service providers. She co-founded and helped build the CreaGen Chemistry Incubator and is currently developing and raising money to launch a second life science incubator, The Lab Concourse (TLC), with plans to launch in the second quarter of 2016. She is founder of The New England Women in Science Executives Club (NEWISE), a peer-to-peer organization for women executive leaders in the science, healthcare and academic communities. Shelley is a key leader and catalyst in the life science community; she makes things happen by bringing people, and the institutions they represent, together, always collaborating with individuals on a personal level — in all endeavors, she thinks locally and acts globally.

Denise Aronson

Denise Aronson is a pioneer in the life science health and safety industry. Denise founded Safety Partners, Inc. in 1992. Since then, Denise and her team have implemented safety programs for more than 275 top life science companies. Prior to founding Safety Partners, Denise served as an environmental, health, and safety manager at T- Cell Sciences, and managed a clinical prenatal diagnostics laboratory. She began her career as a research associate at Beth Israel Deaconess Hospital in Boston, after receiving a BS in Biochemistry from the University of New Hampshire. Denise is a certified chemical hygiene officer through the National Registry of Certified Chemists. She is active in more than 20 professional societies and trade organizations, and was a founding member of the New Hampshire Bio/Medical Council, Preferred Provider Leads Group; the Tom Vance, Life Sciences Connector Group; and the Cambridge Chamber of Commerce, Life Sciences Leads Group. She is a regular on the industry speaking circuit, a member of the MassBio SEF Working Group, and an American Chemical Society (ACS) Expert. Denise also serves on the Advisory Board for the UMass Lowell Department of Work Environment and the Board of The Bioscience Network. Safety Partners is a Certified Woman-Owned Business, and has been named one of the 25 Best Small Companies by Working Mother magazine.

Barbara Fox

Dr. Fox is an experienced entrepreneur and scientist. She was an Affiliated Entrepreneur at Oxford Bioscience Partners, and founder, President and Chief Scientific Officer of Recovery Pharmaceuticals, a company developing and marketing medications for the treatment of addiction. Prior to founding Recovery Pharmaceuticals in 1998, she was Vice President, Immunology at ImmuLogic Pharmaceutical Corp. She joined ImmuLogic in 1993, having served on the faculty of the University Maryland School of Medicine, Baltimore, as Associate Professor of Medicine with tenure in the Division of Rheumatology and Clinical Immunology, Dept. of Medicine. Dr. Fox received her BA in Chemistry from Bryn Mawr College and her PhD in Chemistry from MIT. Dr. Fox trained as a postdoc in cellular immunology at the NIH. Dr. Fox was a 2014 E&Y Entrepreneur of the Year New England™ finalist.

Yael Schwartz

Yael Schwartz, PhD received her doctorate in Human Physiology from a joint program at the University of Massachusetts Medical School and Worcester Polytechnic Institute and is currently the Executive Vice President of Preclinical Development for RestorGenex (RESX) and on the Board of Directors. She has spent most of her professional career in drug discovery and new drug development. Dr. Schwartz has been the Founder, President, CEO and Director of Hygeia Therapeutics as well as Canterbury Laboratories, a spin-out company from Hygeia.

Jennifer King

Jennifer has over 15 years operating experience in the biopharmaceutical industry. In June of 2015, she joined Intellia Therapeutics, a company focused on developing curative medicines using the promise of CRISPR/CAS9 gene editing technology. Prior to joining Intellia, Jennifer a held a variety of business development and commercial roles supporting Shire’s rare disease business. Most recently, she was responsible for the sourcing, initial evaluation and negotiation of licensing and acquisition opportunities as part of Shire’s corporate development group. Jenn also held positions in the rare disease commercial organization as a Global Brand Director for two late stage clinical programs and as the as the Director of New Products, responsible for providing commercial guidance to development and research stage projects, as well as evaluating the commercial attractiveness of business development opportunities. Prior to joining Shire in 2006, she held a variety of commercial roles in at Millennium Pharmaceuticals; most notably as the Product Manager for the US launch of VELCADE®. Jenn received her BS in Biology from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, her PhD in Developmental Biology from Stanford University School of Medicine and her MBA from Northeastern University.

From Academia to Industry: Career Possibilities Networking Night


Tuesday, January 26, 2016
5:30 pm - 8:00 pm
Event Categories:


WPI (Life Sciences & Bioengineering Center Gateway Park, Lobby Level Auditorium)
60 Prescott Street
Worcester, MA 01605 United States
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MASS AWIS is the Massachusetts Chapter of the National Association for Women in Sciences. Our mission is to support women in all scientific fields and to achieve equity and full participation for women in science, mathematics, engineering, and technology. Our events and membership are open for the public regardless of their gender, professional background, or career level.