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News & Press: Connect

July 2019 Connect

Tuesday, July 9, 2019   (0 Comments)
Posted by: Needa Virani
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July 2019
GWIS Connect is a periodical for GWIS national and chapter news.  Subscribe
In This Issue
  • Message from incoming GWIS President 
  • Updates from National Conference in Rapid City, SD
  • Incoming GWIS Officers
  • Chapter News

Message from Incoming President Dr. Gina Moreno

I joined GWIS when I was a graduate student at the University of Iowa in 2014. I recall that Dr. Amy Belfi, currently the Past-President of GWIS, invited me to attend the GWIS National Meeting with her in the Twin Cities. I figured it would be a fun trip and thought it would be a good opportunity to meet more women scientists, so I tagged along.  Little did I know that at that National Meeting I would make lasting connections with many dedicated and intelligent individuals eager to advocate for women in science. Over the years, I have continuously been inspired by the amazing leaders of GWIS. I have watched our leadership team work tirelessly to ensure the longevity and prosperity of this organization. I am honored to be serving as the incoming President of GWIS.  
I am very proud of the growth and continued success of our organization.  Over the past year we welcomed seven new chapters, introduced a number of new initiatives we hope will better serve our members, and continued to empower women through our fellowships. As your incoming President, I will work hard to uphold our mission at GWIS: “building a global community to inspire, support, recognize, and empower women in science.” With this mission in mind, my goal as President is to continue building an inclusive community for those advocating for women in science. I encourage you all to join me. You can start by reaching out to one another -- get involved in your local chapter or you can even start your own! To those of you in leadership positions in your chapter—I encourage you to reach out to other chapters! Moreover, if you are interested in a leadership role at the national level, please consider joining one of our GWIS National Committees!  
Please don’t hesitate to reach out to me ( with questions, comments, or concerns. I look forward to serving as your president this coming year and will do my best to ensure that GWIS continues to thrive.
United in Friendship through Science,
Georgina (Gina) Moreno
President, GWIS
National Conference Update
The 98th Annual GWIS National Conference was organized and hosted by the Black Hills Chapter in Rapid City, South Dakota. The theme of the conference was “Communicating Science to Connect, Lead, and Empower.”

The conference opened with a talk by Tatewin Means, the Executive Director of the Thunder Valley Community Development Corporation, an indignous non-profit organization on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation working to improve the health, culture, and environment on the reservation using a grassroots, community-based model.
Other speakers included: Dr. Lisa Kunza, Associate Professor of Chemistry and Applied Biological Sciences at the South Dakota School of Mines, Dr. Laura Chandler, the Director of the Center for Diversity and Community at the University of South Dakota, and Dr. Scyller Borglum the South Dakota District 32 Representative.

Additionally, a lively panel discussion titled “Communicating for Success” provided attendees insights from industry and academic experts.

The evening banquet featured a keynote address from Cabot-Ann Christofferson, a researcher with the Majorana Demonstrator Experiment to SURF for Oak Ridge National Lab and task leader for clean material production of the LEGEND collaboration.
GWIS would like to thank the members of the Black Hills Chapter, especially the GWIS National Conference Coordinator Brooke Long, for putting together such an energetic and engaging conference! Additionally, we would like to thank the conference sponsors: Sanford Health, the South Dakota School of Mines & Technology, Black Hills Energy, Regional health, Wyoming NASA Space Grant Consortium, South Dakota Space Grant Consortium, Extractive Innovations, Graduate Student Society, and Jolly Lane Greenhouse.
Incoming National Council Officers

We would like to announce our new National Officers: President Dr. Gina Moreno, President Elect Dr. Allison Didychuk, Vice President Brooke Long, and Past President Dr. Amy Belfi. Additionally, we would like to announce our new Directors: Gazelle Rastegar, Dr. Michelle Booze, and Judy Artley


Back (left to right): Michelle Booze, Judy Artley, Megan Dowdle; 

Front: Amy Belfi, Gina Moreno, Brooke Long

Chapter News

On June 15th, GWIS LA chose to give back to the local community and did a beach cleanup at Redondo Beach near LA. They worked together with the environmental organization, Heal the Bay, followed by a group lunch afterwards.


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About GWIS

Founded in 1921, Graduate Women in Science is an inter-disciplinary society of scientists who collectively seek to advance the participation and recognition of women in science and to foster research through grants, awards and fellowships. We comprise over 30 active chapters of more than 900 women who are "United in Friendship through Science" to support and inspire member professional goals and mutual appreciation of science. Learn more at

Contact GWIS

PO Box 7
Mullica Hill, NJ 08062

Amy Belfi

Jane Sharer Maier

Kayla Chase

GWIS Connect Copy Editor:
Anna Kowalkowski
Chapter News Editor:
Rituparna Ganguly

Copyright © 2019 Graduate Women in Science, All rights reserved.

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