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|Sharon Amacher Candidate Statement|
Professor and Vice Chair, Department of Molecular Genetics
Ohio State University (Columbus, Ohio)
I am actively involved in service to the zebrafish and developmental biology communities. I’ve organized regional developmental biology meetings, the International Zebrafish Development and Genetics Conference, and the Strategic Conference of Zebrafish Investigators, and am PI for the NIH R13 grant that supports the SCZI meeting. I served on an NIH Zebrafish Tools RFA review panel and currently serve on the NIH DEV2 study section and the Developmental Dynamics editorial board. I previously served on the US Zebrafish TILLING Consortium External Advisory Board and am currently a ZIRC advisory board member and an interim IZFS board member, serving on the IZFS Nominations and Membership committees. I am an active member of other professional societies: the Society for Developmental Biology, where I serve on the Paul D. Henion travel award selection committee, and the Genetics Society of America, where I served on the Nominations committee and chaired the Mentoring and Professional Development committee. I have a strong record of training the next generation; I have participated in two summer courses at the Marine Biological Laboratory – Embryology and Zebrafish Development and Genetics – for a collective total of 13 years since 2005. I am currently the co-director for the MBL Zebrafish Development and Genetics course and am working with other course faculty to organize a symposium this summer celebrating the 20th year of the course.
I have served on the IZFS Membership and Nominations committees and on the IZFS board in an interim capacity (i.e., until membership achieved a level that would support a meaningful election). I would like to continue to serve because I think the IZFS mission – to represent and promote zebrafish research worldwide and to facilitate information and resource exchange among members of the international zebrafish community – is an important one. IZFS can and should play a role in coordinating the efforts of the many zebrafish regional and research societies across the globe and of ZFIN. Although IZFS is not a substitute for these other organizations, it can serve as an important international hub to ensure that we synergize our strengths and avoid redundant efforts. Personally, I feel that IZFS can make a difference in several critical areas: (1) by increasing the visibility of zebrafish research in the scientific community and to the public, (2) by promoting the collective success of zebrafish investigators, specifically by coordinating efforts to increase funding for zebrafish research across the globe, (3) by providing quality mentorship, particularly at junior levels and to those new to the zebrafish community, and (4) by fostering a global and interactive zebrafish community. One way we can accomplish these goals is by recruiting a diverse membership, with members at all academic levels from many countries and types of institutions, and actively involving them on IZFS committees and/or on the IZFS board. I have been involved in service to the zebrafish community in many different capacities and, if elected, would be pleased to continue doing so as a member of the IZFS board.