Speakers List

A recurring issue at conferences and seminars is the underwhelming number of URM speakers giving talks. A commonly cited reason for this is not knowing who to invite. To that end, we’ve begun compiling a list of prominent URM researchers across every field of STEM and Medicine. We hope that conference organizers can use this list as a resource when inviting speakers. However we hope that organizers use this list conscientiously. There is a well-known, and well-documented, issue of “tokenism”, i.e. the idea that women and underrepresented minority researchers are included to give an appearance of diversity. We would like to stress that a diverse conference is not just about representation of minority speakers but also about creating an environment that is conducive to sharing ideas and collaborating. See our “Best practices” page for tips on how to create an inclusive environment.

Finally, we would like to stress that: 
(i) Speakers on our list should be compensated properly for their time.
(ii) We are not the only resource out there! Check out this database for more lists of underrepresented researchers.
(iii) Our list is mainly nomination based (we then reach out to the researchers for their consent to be featured on the list). Please consider nominating yourself or others to be on the list! You can do so here or by emailing us at dscnatl@gmail.com.

1) Please see here for the Speakers List in spreadsheet format (useful for more complicated searches), an explanation of all of the fields (and how to search them), and a list of sorted subfields.
2) Our website saves your previous search for future reference!
If you would like to clear your search, press the “Clear” button (next to the “Submit” button).

Type of Research
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Field (see Notes for sorted subfields)Preferred NamePositionDescriptionWebsiteTags
Materials Chemistry, Nanotechnology Dr. Erick Vasquez Assistant Professor The Vasquez Lab works on developing stable, multifunctional surfaces based on inorganic nanoparticles (ie silver, gold, and silica) combined with polymers. These materials can be used downstream in processes such as water purification, biofuel production, etc. Lab Website nanotechnology, inorganic
Neuroscience Dr. Fabricio H. Do Monte, DVM, PhD Assistant Professor The Do Monte Lab focuses on understanding the neural circuits and mechanisms underlying emotional memories. We are particularly interested in elucidating how fear- and reward-associated memories interact to generate the most adaptive behavioral responses. Lab Website neural circuits, emotion, behavior, optogenetics, in vivo electrophysiological recordings, fear, reward, memory, substance abuse.
Epigenetics, Genetics, Neuroscience, Psychology Dr. Janitza L. Montalvo-Ortiz Assistant Professor The Montalvo-Ortiz lab investigates the underlying genetic/epigenetic basis of psychiatric disorders and how traumatic events increase risk for mental disorders. Faculty Page trauma, mental illness, psychiatry, substance abuse, post traumatic stress disorder, child abuse, depression
Atomic/Molecular/Optical Physics, Computational Chemistry, Energy, Materials Chemistry, Theoretical Chemistry Dr. Jose Mendoza-Cortes Assistant Professor The Mendoza-Cortes lab studies a wide array of topics lying at the intersection of machine learning, condensed matter physics and materials chemistry. Lab Website quantum simulations, condensed matter theory, energy, statistical mechanics, big data
Neuroscience Dr. Benjamin Suarez-Jimenez Assistant Professor The Suarez-Jimenez lab uses virtual reality and multimodal MRI to investigate neural signatures of anxiety and PTSD as well as location-specific contextual learning and overgeneralization. Faculty Page learning, mental illness, PTSD, anxiety, MRI, Conditioning, virtual reality
Neuroscience Dr. Francisco Sotres-Bayón Associate Professor The Sotres-Bayon lab investigates how the brain uses previous emotional experiences to guide survival decisions in rats. Faculty Page motivation, behavior, fear, safety, reward, emotion, prefrontal, amygdala
Psychology Dr. Leah M. Adams Assistant Professor Dr. Adams’ research group, the Mental & Physical Health and Behavior (M-PHAB) Laboratory, investigates the psychosocial aspects of adaptation to illness and injury. They also examine how factors operating at various levels (e.g., intrapersonal, interpersonal, structural) affect health risk and promotion among vulnerable populations (including racial/ethnic minorities, sexual and gender minorities, women, and criminal justice system-involved adults). Faculty Page HIV, Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP), chronic pain, chronic illness, disability, injury, adaptation
Neuroscience Dr. Irving E. Vega Associate Professor The Vega lab investigates the proteome changes associated with Alzheimer's disease and related dementias. They are also interested in developing evidence-based strategies to promote health equity. Lab Website tau filaments, neurodegeneration, health equity, tauopathy, Alzheimer’s disease, proteomics, biomarkers
Metabolism, Microbiology Dr. Juliana Vasco Correa Post-doc Dr. Vasco Correa works in the Shah Lab to investigate how we can harness anaerobic digestion in bacteria to generate renewable energy. LinkedIn anaerobic digestion, metabolism, renewable energy
Applied Mathematics, Computational Neuroscience, Neuroscience Dr. Gabrielle Gutierrez Post-doc Dr. Gutierrez is a post-doc in the Shea-Brown and Rieke labs where she investigates how local neuron properties influence the behavior of neural circuits and networks. She is interested in understanding the algorithms of the brain. Website circuitry, modeling, processing, perception