Dr Jo Pollard, BSc (Hons), PhD
Dr Jo Pollard qualified at Honours level in ecology (Limnology, Ecology and Applied Ecology) and animal behavior then spent 18 years conducting research on animal management with AgResearch. She has particular interests in animal welfare, NZ’s ecology, and scientific integrity.
Quinn Whiting-OKeefe, MD, MA, BA
Dr Whiting-OKeefe graduated from the University of Utah Sigma Cum Lauda and Phi Beta Kappa with dual Bachelor degrees in chemistry and mathematics. He then did PhD work in mathematics at the California Institute of Technology until he interrupted his dissertation work, accepting an MA in Mathematics, to go to medical school at the University of Utah. His pre-med undergraduate courses included: genetics, ecology, comparative anatomy and mammalogy. For the latter, he spent six months as a field research assistant studying mouse populations in Utah. He graduated from medical school second in his class in 1974 receiving the degree of Medical Doctor. He did a residency in internal medicine at the University of California, San Francisco (the life science campus), and was Board Certified in Internal Medicine in 1978.
At the time, much of clinical knowledge was based on studies similar in methodological structure to DoC’s research on aerial 1080. He recognized that this was an important problem for which his dual backgrounds in mathematics and medicine especially qualified him to address. In 1977 he applied and was accepted as Robert Wood Johnson (RWJ) Clinical Scholar specializing in biostatistics, statistical inference and research design, especially the connection between the structure of experiments, the statistics, and conclusions. As an RWJ Scholar, he published several papers on this and related subjects. Simultaneously, he did a fellowship in Rheumatology and was board certified in 1983.
In 1979, he joined the faculty at the University of California, San Francisco, with a dual appointment in Medicine and Medical Information Science. He rose to the rank of Associate Professor before going to work in the private sector developing clinical information systems. He attained the position of Vice President at three companies, including Senior Vice President of Engineering at Bell Atlantic
Healthcare Systems, where he designed and lead the development of OACIS, a $50 million project.
Throughout his activities in medical informatics, he continued to design and analyze studies, it being his first real academic passion after mathematics. From 1995 to 1998, Dr. Whiting-OKeefe single-handedly developed the Healthcare Outcomes Performance System which uses advance hierarchical statistical linear modeling to predict healthcare outcomes. Since1998 when he retired and moved to New Zealand, Dr. Whiting-OKeefe has continued to design and analyze experiments and publish papers with his long time colleague and friend, David B Hellmann, M.D., Vice Dean and Aliki Perroti Professor of Medicine at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine.
Dr Whiting-OKeefe proudly became a New Zealand citizen in 2002. He is 63 years old and lives with Patricia, his wife of 35 years and co-author, in Port Charles, Coromandel, New Zealand.
Patricia Whiting-OKeefe, PhD, BS
Dr. Pat Whiting-OKeefe attended the University of Delaware, U.S.A. graduating with a Bachelor of Science in Chemistry with high honors, honors in course and distinction in 1965. She received her Doctor of Philosophy in Chemical Physics from the California Institute of Technology in 1971. Her dissertation concerned quantum mechanical orbital modeling in lithium. She subsequently worked in a variety of scientific, technical, management and consulting positions, including:
Project Manager, Eaton Kenway (1971-1974) where she managed the installation of the first fully automated warehousing system.
Director, Advanced Computer Systems Department, Stanford Research Institute (1974-1982),
Managing Scientist, Failure Analysis Associates (1988-1990),
Director, Information Resources, SyStemix, Inc (1992-1998), which develops cellular therapy technologies
She was Associate Professor, San Francisco State University (1976-1977).
In 1998, she also moved permanently to New Zealand and became a New Zealand citizen in 2002.
Dr Alexis Pietak
Alexis Pietak is a biophysicist and research scientist at the Allen Discovery Centre at Tufts University, whose work focuses on understanding the mechanisms underlying the creation of complex, functional patterns in living systems.
Dr. Pietak has a PhD in physics (2005), and dual degrees in engineering physics (2000) and biochemistry (2001) from Queen’s University in Canada, along with more than a decade of experience in theoretical and experimental research at various universities in Canada and New Zealand.
Since 2008, Dr. Pietak has used her multidisciplinary math, physics, and biology experience to develop useful and inventive computational models applicable to patterning processes happening in both in vitro culture plates and bioreactors, as well as the complex environment of living systems.