About Us

Our Mission

To create a supportive community for LGBTQ+ individuals in the STEM fields through professional development, community building, and mentorship and to highlight voices and experiences from within the LGBTQ+ Community. 

The Vision

LGBTQ+ individuals in STEM are more likely to experience social marginalization and harassment in their workplaces, have limited career opportunities, and have their professional expertise devalued by their colleagues than their non-LGBTQ+ counterparts. This experience can lead to members of the LGBTQ+ community choosing to leave STEM because of the negative treatment they receive and the lack of comfort they have within this space.

MASS AWIS’s mission is to support women in all scientific fields and to achieve equity and full participation for women in STEM. By breaking down barriers and creating opportunities, AWIS strives to ensure that women in these fields can achieve their full potential. This group is a space consistent with the MASS AWIS mission created to aid and support the specific needs of the LGBTQ+ community–including trans, non-binary and gender non-conforming people who are not women. The purpose of this new space is to focus on programming that promotes professional development, community building, mentorship, and highlight voices and experiences from within the community.


Meet the Team

Kathy Nevola (they/them) Founder

Kathy Nevola received their PhD from Tufts University in Cellular, Molecular, and Developmental Biology with a concentration in Bioinformatics. They currently work as a Data Scientist at Olink Proteomics. Kathy is also a member of their company cultural development team Culturelink. Kathy is passionate about mental health, D&I, and giving others the opportunity to shine. In their free time they enjoy playing with their dog and cat, rock climbing, doing yoga, or playing video games. 

Joanne Kamens (she/her) Ally Sponsor

Dr. Kamens received her PhD in genetics from Harvard Medical School and has had a varied career in academia, pharma, biotech and nonprofit. She is the founder of the Boston chapter of the Association for Women in Science (MASS AWIS). She’s now joined The Impact Seat to partner with organizations who want to create a truly inclusive and equitable workplace that supports a diversity of thriving employees. Her decade leading a biotech was a way to experiment with practical ways to create a workplace with everyone able to thrive and contribute. While Executive Director of Addgene they maintained single-digit employee turnover for almost a decade and collaborated with dozens of inclusion organizations to help Addgene become a Best Place to Work in Boston for 6 years running  (#1 Best Place in 2016). For example, Joanne brought Addgene in to be a founding sponsor of the Massachusetts LGBT Chamber of Commerce. 

Want to join our team? Email knevola at gmail.com

We host a Monthly Meetup Group on the 2nd Wednesday of every month from 5:30 to 6:30 pm ET

MASS AWIS’s LGBTQ+ Affinity Group is offering the opportunity to make professional connections with other members and allies of the LGBTQ+ community. This LGBTQ+ Meetup provides a space to support members of the community, network, and discuss gaps in programming. This event will provide an opportunity to establish professional connections and practice networking in an intimate setting. This event will also provide an opportunity to discuss additional programming opportunities.


Past Events

The Scientific Journey of Jennifer Petter, Founder and CIO of Arrakis Therapeutics

March 2, 2022

MASS AWIS’s LGBTQ+ Affinity group invites you to join us for a 1-hour talk by Jennifer Petter, Founder and CIO of Arrakis Therapeutics. Dr. Petter will be speaking about her science journey and how she became a scientist and manager. She will also speak about the interplay between her scientific journey and her transition and the challenges and opportunities that came along with her journey. The talk will be followed by a 15-minute moderated Q&A. We are looking forward to learning from her and hope to see you there. (https://massawis.org/event/the-scientific-journey-of-jennifer-petter/)


LGBTQ+ Meetup Group

January 26, 2022

April 6, 2022

Who is this group for?

This group is made to be a space for those who feel that can benefit from it. While the group was made to benefit LGBTQ+ people in STEM fields, if you are an ally in a non-STEM field but are interested in our programming, you are welcome to join us! Regardless of your gender identity, field of study, sexual orientation, or stage of career, this group is open to you if you feel you would benefit from it. If you align with our mission or are interested in learning more, we encourage you to join us.


Join Our Mailing List: 

Sign up here to join the MASS AWIS LGBTQ+ Affinity Group email list 

Learn about future meetups and community related events. We promise no spam!