Speakers List

A recurring issue at conferences and seminars is the underwhelming number of minority 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 underrepresented minority scientists across every field of STEM. 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 minorities 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 the sharing ideas and collaborating. See our “Best practices” page for tips on how to create an inclusive environment. Also, please email nominations for scientists to be on our list to DSCnatl@gmail.com!


We are not the only resource out there! Check out these websites for other lists highlighting historically disenfranchised groups:
– General: International Forum for Cell Biology Speaker’s List
– Hispanics in STEM: National Hispanic Science Network
– LGBTQ+ in STEM: 500 Queer Scientists in STEM
– Women in neuroscience: Anne’s List
– Women & URM scientists: Keystone Symposia
– Diversity in Chemistry: Diversify Chemistry
– Latinx Scientists in STEM: NIH List

Sort by:
Field/SubfieldPreferred NameInstitutionPositionDescriptionWebsiteWebsite 2Tags
Computational Neuroscience, Neuroscience Dr. Arif Hamid Brown University Post-doc Dr. Hamid is a post-doc in the Moore and Frank lab where he investigates how dopamine and the cortico-basal ganglia are involved in reward-learning and motivation. Research Website Twitter dopamine, reward, learning, motivation, decision making
Theoretical Chemistry, Computational Chemistry Dr. Clyde A. Daly Jr. Johns Hopkins University Post-doc Dr. Daly works in the Hernandez Lab to investigate interactions between nanoparticles, cell membranes and proteins. Additionally, he is modeling nanoparticle toxicity using machine learning. Google Scholar Page nanoparticles, machine learning, cell membrane, protein
Clinical - Psychology, Developmental Psychology Dr. Claudia Lugo-Candelas Columbia University Medical Center Assistant Professor Dr. Lugo-Candelas is an Assistant Professor in the Posner Lab studying the prenatal exposures that increase risk for impulse control disorders in children. Specifically, she is interested in the role of maternal inflammation as a risk factor for ADHD. Faculty Page Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), childhood psychology, obesity, perinatal care, neuroimaging
Clinical - Cardiology, Neuroscience Dr. Olujimi A. Ajijola University of California - Los Angeles Assistant Professor The Ajijola Lab investigates neural regulation of the heart and cardiovascular system, and develops neuroscience-based therapies for cardiovascular diseases. Lab Website electrophysiology, arrhythmia, innervation, neurocardiology, autonomic nervous system (ANS), viral engineering, heart failure, myocardial infarction
Chemical Engineering, Materials Chemistry Dr. Maria Carreon South Dakota School of Mines & Technology Assistant Professor The Carreon Garciduenas lab investigates the synthesis of new materials derived from: ammonia, carbamates, carbon dioxide, graphene, organic metals, and zeolite. Lab Website plasma catalysis, nanotechnology, low temperature/low pressure synthesis
Materials Chemistry, Nanotechnology Dr. Erick Vasquez University of Dayton 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 Twitter nanotechnology, inorganic
Inorganic Chemistry, Materials Chemistry Dr. Luisa Whittaker-Brooks The University of Utah Assistant Professor The Whittaker-Brooks Lab investigates novel inorganic and organic nanomaterials that can be used in solar energy, thermoelectrics, batteries and electronics. Lab Website synthetic inorganic-organic chemistry, spectroscopy, nanofabrication, renewable energy
Molecular Biology, Neuroscience Dr. E. Javier Lopez Soto Brown University Post-doc Dr. López Soto is a Warren Alpert Fellow and Post-doc in the Lipscombe Lab. He studies how alternative pre-mRNA splicing, a mechanism that fine-tunes the properties of neuronal proteins for specific cellular tasks, is tightly regulated in pain pathways and integrated with epigenetic mechanisms to control nociception. Research Gate alternative splicing, epigenetics, RNA processing, chronic pain, pain
Medical Mycology, Microbiology Dr. Jesus Antonio Romo Tufts University Post-doc Dr. Romo works in the Kumamoto laboratory at Tufts University School of Medicine investigating the effects of Candida species during infection by bacterial pathogens in the context of the gastrointestinal tract. Please visit https://www.asm.org/Biographies/Jesus-Antonio-Romo for his podcast. Research Page Twitter human microbiome, mycobiome, fungus, GI tract, C. difficile, Candida
Cellular Biology, Molecular Biology Dr. Jesse Zamudio University of California - Los Angeles Assistant Professor The Zamudio lab maps RNA-mediated interactions to investigate how RNA and RNA binding proteins establish the gene expression programs that determine cell identity. Faculty Page ncRNAs, miRNA, lncRNA, ceRNA, gene regulation
Cellular Biology, Molecular Biology Dr. Samantha C. Lewis University of California - Berkeley Assistant Professor The Lewis Lab aims to reveal the cellular mechanisms that ensure mitochondrial DNA integrity and inheritance in metazoans, using quantitative imaging, genetics, and systems biology approaches. Lab Website mitochondria, membrane contact sites, DNA replication, organelle biogenesis
Cellular Biology, Neuroscience Dr. Zayd Khaliq NIH - Intramural Research Program Principal Investigator The Khaliq lab investigates various cellular mechanisms of dopamine-releasing neurons including voltage-gated ion channel functioning and the role of neuromodulatory inputs. Faculty Page dopamine, movement, reward, voltage-gated ion channels, learning
Photochemistry, Materials Chemistry Dr. Steven A. Lopez Northeastern University Assistant Professor The Lopez group uses modern computational methods to determine the mechanisms of organic photochemical reactions in collaboration with experimentalists. Lab Website Twitter photochemistry, photovoltaics (OPVs), sustainable energy, machine learning, Covalent organic frameworks (COFs)
Cancer Biology, Pharmacology Dr. Tamaro Hudson Howard University Assistant Professor The Hudson Lab evaluates biomarkers as a way to investigate the potential uses of conventional and natural compounds as cancer therapeutics, specifically looking at the effects to muscadine grape skin extract on prostate cancer. Faculty Page Prostate cancer, cancer therapeutics, androgens, heat shock proteins (HSP), phospholipids, protease Inhibitors
Bioinformatics, Genetics Dr. Latrice Landry Harvard Medical School Post-doc Dr. Landry is a post-doc in the Department of Biomedical Informatics where she applies systems based methods to look at how nature and nurture contribute to health disparities. Research Page health equity, nutrigenomics, personalized medicine, diet
Combinatorics, Group Theory Dr. Lindsey-Kay Lauderdale Towson University Assistant Professor Dr. Lauderdale's research lies in an intersection of the areas of combinators and group theory. In particular, her research can be summarized by finding solutions to the following question. How can a given finite group be associated to the structure of a combinatorial object? Faculty Page group theory, automorphisms, permutations
Pharmacology, Physiology Dr. Manuel F. Navedo University of California - Davis Professor The Navedo Lab investigates how local and global calcium signaling regulates muscle contraction and transcription in physiological and pathological conditions. Lab Website calcium signaling, ion channels, smooth muscle cells, electrophysiology, hyperglycemia, diabetes, hypertension
Neuroscience, Ophthalmology Dr. Reyna Martínez-De Luna Upstate Medical University Instructor Dr. Martínez-De Luna investigates potential interventions that can be used to address retinal injury. LinkedIn retina, vision, injury, regeneration
Neuroscience, Pharmacology Dr. Elva Denise Diaz University of California - Davis Professor The Diaz Lab investigates the role of transmembrane proteins (i.e. the AMPA receptor auxiliary factors SynDIG/Prrt and the trans-synaptic adhesion GPCR complex Bai2) at excitatory synapses in the brain using a combination of molecular, cellular, biochemical, and electrophysiology approaches. Faculty Page Twitter synapses, receptor trafficking, glutamate receptors, auxiliary transmembrane proteins, trans-synaptic adhesion complexes
Neuroscience, Psychology Dr. Arturo R. Zavala California State University - Long Beach Associate Professor The Zavala Lab investigates the short- and long-term neurochemical and behavioral effects of exposure to psychostimulant drugs across development (neonatal, adolescence, and adulthood), as well as determine the impact that early exposure to drugs may have on the susceptibility to abuse drugs later in life. Faculty Page neonatal, ADHD, caffeine, alcohol, nicotine, serotonin, oxycodone, methamphetamine