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|Katharine Lewis Candidate Statement|
Associate Professor, Biology Department
Syracuse University (Syracuse, New York)
I have been actively involved in the zebrafish community for my whole career. I’ve attended all but one of the international zebrafish meetings since my first international zebrafish conference in 1996, all of the strategic conferences for zebrafish investigators held in the US and a couple of the European PI meetings. Recently I hosted and co-organized (with Jeff Amack and Jason Myers) the first ever Central New York zebrafish conference. I have been a PhD examiner for many zebrafish theses, an ad hoc reviewer for zebrafish grants for 12 different funding agencies in the US, Europe and Hong Kong and an NSF panel member for IOS Neural Organization. I was an elected committee member for the British Society for Developmental Biology for 5 years and was a scientific organizer for the annual BSDB conference in 2010 and a Frontiers of Science Symposium co-funded by the Royal Society (UK) and Japanese Society for the Promotion of Science in 2008. I am actively involved in K-12 scientific outreach in Syracuse using zebrafish. We have been working with four local high schools as well as after school clubs and one of the high schools now has its own zebrafish colony. I was an SDB Choose Development mentor a couple of years ago and I am a WiSE postdoc and graduate mentor at my home university. I have also served on various different committees at my home institutions. I am also a member (or have been a member) of several different European and US scientific societies.
I am passionate about the zebrafish community and helping it to flourish across the world. Being part of this community has been one of the most rewarding aspects of my career and I would appreciate an opportunity to give something back. I value the international dimension of IZFS as I believe that we all will gain from continuing to strengthen our profile with funding, regulatory and governmental agencies, journals, educational institutions and other scientific societies around the world. We are a truly international community and as such, it is also important that IZFS helps to facilitate easy exchange of information, lines and other resources between labs throughout the world, in addition to supporting zebrafish conferences. I relish big-picture thinking, planning and developing vision and strategy. So I would enjoy being part of this society while it is still relatively new. I would like to see IZFS spearhead conversations about, serve as a central contact point for people interested in, and organize committees to address, a variety of issues relevant to our community including, but not limited to, increasing diversity in our community, raising the profile of zebrafish research and researchers, mentoring, education and outreach. I am interested in serving as the treasurer as this role would suit my skills. In addition to the service/experience listed in the previous section, I was previously president of the board for my local choir (a 501(C)(3) organization) and treasurer for a UK NGO called National Women’s Network. I have experience with financial systems in the US and Europe and transferring money between countries. I currently manage grants from NIH, NSF, HFSP and NY state and I have previously held grants and/or fellowships from many different European and US organizations. If elected, I would be very happy to serve as IZFS treasurer.