Navigating Career Pathways as a Woman in STEM

(Women in STEM Panel 2019)

Do you need some inspiration for making your own STEM career roadmap?

Would you like to hear success strategies from women trailblazers in STEM fields?

Or are you simply interested to learn more about different opportunities available in STEM fields?

Come join Women Accelerators for an interactive panel about “Navigating Career Pathways as a Woman in STEM” on September 18th, 2019 at the Broad Institute. We have invited panelists who pursued different trajectories in achieving their current STEM careers. They will be sharing stories behind their respective journeys to success, how they managed career hurdles and will be open to discussions with regards to better-promoting women in STEM. This event is also a great opportunity to learn more about STEM-related careers and to network with successful women in STEM fields.

Our panelists include:

Lauren Celano: Speaker, Recruiter and Coach, Propel Careers
Salumeh Companieh: Technology Executive and CIO Corporate Solutions at Cushman & Wakefield
Sophie de Boer: Associate, Flagships Pioneering
Samira Farboodmanesh: Device Development Lead at Takeda
Jenny Ro: Co-Founder, COO at Curious Reader

Dennis Dean, Scientific Site Director at Seven Bridges, will be moderating this event.

Lauren Celano

Salumeh Companieh

Sophie de Boer

Dennis Dean

Jenny Ro

Samira Farboodmanesh


Wednesday, September 18, 2019, from 6:30 PM to 8:30 PM (EDT)

Broad Institute
415 Main Street
Board Room (Mezzanine Level)
Cambridge, MA 02142

Lauren Celano

Lauren Celano is the Co-founder and CEO of Propel Careers, a life science search and career development firm based in Boston. Lauren is very passionate about working with individuals to help them find exciting growth opportunities in the life sciences and related industries. Lauren co-founded Propel Careers in 2009 and since then, has worked with thousands of students, postdocs, medical residents and professionals to help advance their careers. Before Propel, she spent about 10 years in the life sciences industry working with companies to advance drug molecules through SNBL USA, Aptuit, Quintiles, and Absorption Systems. She has a B.S. in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology from Gettysburg College and an MBA with a focus in the health sector and entrepreneurship from Boston University. Lauren is on the Board of MassBioEd, the Advisory Board of the Boston University School of Public Health Pharmaceuticals Program, the Advisory Board of the Professional Science Masters Program at Framingham State University and the Advisory Board for NE GWISE. She has also been part of the selection committee for the Life Sciences Immigrant Entrepreneur of the Year Award since 2014 with the Immigrant Learning Center.

Sal Companieh

Sal Companieh leads the strategic and operational direction and compliance of all Corporate Solutions at Cushman & Wakefield across 70 countries servicing over 51,000 colleagues. As a member of the Global Technical Solutions leadership team, Sal is responsible for the strategic direction of all corporate technology supporting Cushman & Wakefield’s $8.2 billion of revenue.

Gleaning from over 20 years of consulting experience in process optimization and technology architecture Sal has led Cushman & Wakefield through more than five large scale multi-billion-dollar integrations, implementation of a unified global HR and Finance platform as well as enabling a successful public offering.

In her tenure at Cushman, Sal also served as divisional CIO for the C&W Services division leading the technology strategy of the one-billion-dollar entity. In this role Sal was recognized as a finalist for the CIO100 Awards for CIO of the Year Boston.

As an executive within the firm, Sal is an active mentor of female colleagues throughout the organization and takes pride in the diversity of her team from all facets.

Dennis A. Dean

Dr. Dennis A. Dean, II is a Director at Seven Bridges where he leads a Scientific Team in the Boston office and leads several national-scale genomic analysis projects. Dr. Dean’s oversight responsibilities include genomic scientists, bioinformatics scientists, scientific program managers, scientific project managers, and genomic data scientists. In this capacity, he is responsible for the success of his team members across commercial, government, and internal projects. He leads Seven Bridges collaboration outreach with the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the US Department of Veteran Affairs Million Veteran Program (MVP), the Patient Derived Xenograph Network funded by the National Cancer Institute (NCI) and oversee several projects with large pharmaceutical companies. Dr. Dean is passionate about training the next generation of scientists. He serves on the Board of Directors of the Biomedical Science Career Program where he focuses on developing post-doctoral training programs and supporting STEM trainees. Dr. Dean is proud of his mentees which are in graduate programs, medical school and actively pursuing careers in the biomedical sciences as physicians and scientists. Dr. Dean trained as a research fellow in medicine at the Harvard Medical School and Brigham and Women’s Hospital in the Program for Sleep Epidemiology and the Program for Sleep and Cardiovascular Medicine. He earned his Ph.D. in biomedical engineering and biotechnology and M.S. in computer science from the University of Massachusetts. He earned his B.S. in computer science from SUNY, Empire State College.

Sophie De Boer

Sophie is an associate at Flagship Pioneering. At Flagship, Sophie conducts explorations to discover unexplored biological mechanisms and new biotechnologies. As part of a Flagship Lab’s team of entrepreneurial scientists, she develops the science, intellectual property and business strategy that form the foundation of the firm’s breakthrough startups. So far, she has a co-founded two biotech ventures, which are currently operating in stealth mode. Prior to joining Flagship, Sophie completed her post-doctoral fellowship and graduate work in the laboratory of Professor Kevin Eggan at Harvard University and the Broad Institute. Sophie’s research focused on stem cells and regenerative biology. She investigated the mechanisms leading to neurological diseases such as ALS and schizophrenia and developed novel assays to identify therapeutic candidates. Her research has been published in Science Translational Medicine, among other journals. During her studies at Harvard, Sophie received funding from Nantkwest to investigate cellular immunotherapies for her post-doctoral fellowship. She was awarded a Ph.D. fellowship from Boehringer Ingelheim Fonds for outstanding junior scientists. As part of her master’s degree, Sophie conducted research in Professor Christine Mummery’s lab on germ cell development to improve reproductive medicine efforts. In addition to her academic work,

Sophie consulted for Biogen’s Corporate Development and Strategy team and interned at several companies, including PureTech Ventures and Nantkwest. She also completed course work at Harvard Business School. Sophie received a Ph.D. from Leiden University while performing her thesis research at Harvard University. She holds a master’s degree in cancer genomics and developmental biology and a B.S. in biomedical sciences from Utrecht University.

Samira Farboodmanesh

Samira Farboodmanesh is Device Development Lead at Takeda (previously Shire). She leads the strategies and activities for combination products development from feasibility through technology transfer, and regulatory approval. Samira has her Ph.D. in Mechanical Engineering from UMass Lowell continued the academic path at Tufts University (Biomedical Engineering Dept.) and UMass Lowell (Mechanical Engineering Dept) for post-doctoral research (nanofibrous scaffolds for tissue regeneration). After completion of her post-doctoral research, she has been a strong contributor to and technical leader of Research and Development (R&D), Manufacturing, and Technical Operations teams. She joined EMD Millipore as a technical lead within the R&D group and launched multiple products from Tangential Flow Filtration to Single Use Membrane-based Adsorbers.

Prior to joining Takeda, she was in a Principal Device Engineer role within the combination product R&D group at AstraZeneca. She led the product lifecycle of existing combination products and led development to launch of new combination products for the AstraZeneca’s diabetic branch. Samira has been a Mentor of the Women Accelerators for the past two years, and she has been a strong advocate of female mentoring and development in life sciences.

Jenny Ro

An entrepreneurial Ph.D., who regularly steps out of her comfort zone to find “think outside of the box” solutions for a given problem whether that be in science or in business. Her talent for identifying a foundational problem and ability to quickly implement a solution that made her both a valuable science collaborator and strategy consultant in the industry.

After leading 12 years of productive academic research with 14 peer-reviewed publications and research collaboration with industry partners such as Applied Biosystems and Proctor & Gamble, Jenny recognized the deep systemic problem resulting inefficiency in the technology transfer process and pivoted her career to tackle this problem.

Her work and the collaborative relationships with industry resulted in several successful product development and commercialization of her own academic inventions. Leveraging on her scientific knowledge and an ability to build relationship across academia and private sectors, she co-founded two ventures to create a world where ideas and talent flow freely across all sectors.

Her passion for nurturing innovation ecosystem and successful career pivot has been recognized by the Boston biotechnology community and she has been regularly invited to speak in panel discussions and Ph.D. career development programs.

This panel session is open to everyone interested!

Corporate Sponsorship opportunities are available.

Email [email protected] for more information.