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National Research Council (US) Committee on Laboratory Security and Personnel Reliability Assurance Systems for Laboratories Conducting Research on Biological Select Agents and Toxins. Responsible Research with Biological Select Agents and Toxins. Washington (DC): National Academies Press (US); 2009.

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Responsible Research with Biological Select Agents and Toxins.

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ACommittee Member and Staff Biographies


Rita R. Colwell, Ph.D., is Distinguished University Professor both at the University of Maryland at College Park and at Johns Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health, president and chief executive officer of CosmosID, Inc., and senior advisor for Canon US Life Sciences, Inc. Her interests are focused on global infectious diseases, water, and health, and she is developing an international network to address emerging infectious diseases and water issues, including safe drinking water for both the developed and developing world. Dr. Colwell has held many advisory positions in the U.S. government, nonprofit science policy organizations, and private foundations, as well as in the international scientific research community. She is the recipient of 54 honorary doctorates including her alma mater, Purdue University. Dr. Colwell is a member of the National Academy of Sciences, the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences, Stockholm, the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, and the American Philosophical Society. She was awarded the National Medal of Science by the President of the United States and the Order of the Rising Sun by the Emperor of Japan. Dr. Colwell holds a B.S. in bacteriology and an M.S. in genetics from Purdue University and a Ph.D. in oceanography from the University of Washington.


Ronald M. Atlas, Ph.D., is professor of biology and public health and co-director of the Center for Health Hazards Preparedness at the University of Louisville. He earned his B.S. degree from the State University of New York at Stony Brook and his M.S. and Ph.D. degrees from Rutgers University. He was a postdoctoral fellow at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory where he worked on Mars Life Detection. He is a former president of the American Society for Microbiology (ASM) and currently is co-chair of ASM’s Committee on Biodefense. He is also chair of the Wellcome Trust Strategy Committee on Infectious Disease and Population Health. Dr. Atlas is a former member of the Department of Homeland Security’s Science and Technology Advisory Committee, NASA’s Planetary Protection Board, the FBI Scientific Working Group on Bioforensics, and the NIH Recombinant DNA Advisory Committee. His early research focused on oil spills, and he discovered bioremediation as part of his doctoral studies. Later he turned to the molecular detection of pathogens in the environment, which forms the basis for biosensors to detect biothreat agents. He is author of nearly 300 manuscripts and 20 books. Dr. Atlas is a fellow of the American Academy of Microbiology and has received the ASM Award for Applied and Environmental Microbiology, the ASM Founders Award, the Edmund Youde Lectureship Award in Hong Kong, and an honorary D.Sc. from the University of Guelph.

John D. Clements, Ph.D., is a professor and chair of the Department of Microbiology and Immunology at Tulane University School of Medicine and director of the Tulane Center for Infectious Diseases. After receiving his doctorate in 1979 from the University of Texas Health Science Center at Dallas, Dr. Clements completed a National Research Council Associateship at Walter Reed Army Institute of Research in Washington, DC. In 1980, Dr. Clements was appointed as assistant professor in the Departments of Microbiology and Medicine at the University of Rochester School of Medicine in Rochester, NY. In 1982, Dr. Clements joined the faculty at Tulane University, being named as chair in 1999. From 2006 to 2009, he was vice dean for research in the School of Medicine. Dr. Clements maintains an active research program focused on development of vaccines against infectious diseases. Dr. Clements’ research has been continuously funded from a variety of Public Health Service, Department of Defense, and pharmaceutical sources.

Joseph A. DiZinno, DDS, joined BAE Systems as a forensics expert after more than two decades of experience at the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI). Most recently, he was assistant director overseeing the FBI laboratory, where he led all laboratory cases and forensic responses. He also served as a special agent and participated in mitochondria DNA research, which led to its first application to forensic casework. Joe began his career with the FBI in 1986. He received a B.S. degree from the University of Notre Dame in 1975 and a D.D.S. degree from The Ohio State University in 1980.

Adolfo García-Sastre, Ph.D., is professor in the Department of Microbiology, Fischberg Chair and professor in the Department of Medicine, and co-director of the Global Health and Emerging Pathogens Institute at Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York. He is also principal investigator for the Center for Research on Influenza Pathogenesis, one of six Centers of Excellence for Influenza Research and Surveillance funded by the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases. For the past 15 years, his research interest has been focused on the molecular biology of influenza viruses and several other negative strand RNA viruses. During his postdoctoral training in the early 1990s, he developed novel strategies for expression of foreign antigens by a negative strand RNA virus, influenza virus. His research has resulted in more than 200 scientific publications and reviews. He was among the first members of the Vaccine Study Section at the National Institutes of Health. In addition, Dr. García-Sastre is an editor for the Journal of Experimental Medicine and PLoS Pathogens and is a member of the editorial boards for the Journal of Virology, Virology, Journal of General Virology, and Virus Research. He has been a co-organizer of the international course on Viral Vectors (2001), held in Heidelberg, Germany, and sponsored by the Federation of European Biochemical Societies (FEBS), and of the first Research Conference on Orthomyxoviruses in 2001, held in Teixel, the Netherlands, and sponsored by the European Scientific Working Group on Influenza (ESWI).

Michael G. Gelles, Psy.D., is currently a senior manager with Deloitte Consulting LLP’s federal practice in Washington, D.C., consulting in the areas of human capital management and systems and operations. Previously, he was the chief psychologist for the Naval Criminal Investigative Service (NCIS) for more than 16 years. He was the lead psychologist for the behavioral consultation team for the Criminal Investigations Task Force, and a member of numerous other task forces in the areas of workplace violence, insider threat, and ethics in consultation to national security. Prior to joining the NCIS in 1990, Dr. Gelles served as a clinical psychologist for the U.S. Navy. He is active in a number of professional organizations, including the American Psychological Association’s Division of Police Psychology, the International Association of Chiefs of Police, the Psychology Services Section, the Society of Police and Criminal Psychology, and the Association of Threat Assessment Professionals. Dr. Gelles received his B.A. from the University of Delaware and his master’s and doctorate degrees in psychology from Yeshiva University in New York. He completed his clinical and forensic training at the National Naval Medical Center and his advanced training at the Washington School of Psychiatry.

Robert J. Hawley, Ph.D., RBP, CBSP, serves as the senior biosafety professional for Midwest Research Institute’s (MRI’s) Mid-Atlantic Operations and is responsible for the technical oversight of all group biosafety, biosecurity and biosurety projects, and support staff. He performs incident investigations, bio-safety threat and risk assessments, and threat and vulnerability and emergency requirements analyses at designated facilities to mitigate security and safety risks regarding the storage and handling of biological threat agents. Dr. Hawley also provides training in biological safety operations, maximum containment, recombinant DNA technology, and the science and safety of microbial agents and toxins for BSL-2, BSL-3, and BSL-4 operations. Before joining MRI in 2003, he worked at the U.S. Army Medical Research Institute of Infectious Disease (USAMRIID) for 15 years, where he was responsible for formulating, implementing, and interpreting USAMRIID’s microbiological and industrial safety policies and procedures. Positions filled during his tenure at USAMRIID include safety and occupational health specialist, safety and occupational health manager, chief of the Safety and Radiation Protection Office, and Command Biological Safety Officer. He is a former president of the American Biological Safety Association (ABSA) and the Chesapeake Branch of ABSA.

Sally Katzen, J.D., is the executive managing director of The Podesta Group. From 2001 until 2008, she has been a visiting professor of law at George Washington University, University of Michigan, George Mason University, and the University of Pennsylvania. She has also taught American government courses at Smith College, Johns Hopkins University, and the University of Michigan (Washington Program). Before her teaching positions, she served as the administrator of the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs in the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) (1993–1998), as the deputy director of the National Economic Council in the White House (1998–1999), and as the deputy director for management in OMB (1999–2001). Before her government service, she was a partner in the Washington, D.C., law firm of Wilmer, Cutler, and Pickering, specializing in administrative law and legislative matters. Ms. Katzen recently served on the NRC’s Committee to Review the OMB Risk Assessment and the NRC’s Committee on Evaluating Research Efficiency in the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. She is a fellow of the National Academy of Public Administration. She earned her J.D. from the University of Michigan Law School.

Paul Langevin, P.Eng., is the Director of Laboratory Design for Merrick and Company and president of Merrick Canada ULC. He has more than 25 years of expertise in laboratory design, containment, and commissioning. Merrick is recognized around the world as one of the few architecture/engineering firms with significant expertise in the field of high containment. In addition to designing complete high-containment research facilities, Merrick offers the added benefit of design and fabrication of gloveboxes, environmental chambers, and remote material-handling systems that are often required to perform research in high containment conditions. Merrick has developed an extensive company portfolio of technically demanding projects for federal agencies and universities that demonstrate the full suite of corporate, team and individual skills, and abilities necessary for successful, high-quality design and full service engineering. The company’s Facilities, Science & Technology (FaST) team provides engineering and architecture for specialized buildings, facilities, and equipment for the U.S. Department of Energy, the U.S. Department of Agriculture, the National Institute of Standards and Technology, the U.S. Air Force, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, and many other federal, university, R&D, and international clients who require specialized buildings and systems.

Todd R. LaPorte, Ph.D., is professor emeritus of political science and professor of the graduate school at the University of California, Berkeley. He teaches and publishes in the areas of organization theory, technology, and politics and on the organizational and decisionmaking dynamics of large, complex, technologically intensive organizations and the challenges of governance in a technological society. A principal of the Berkeley High Reliability Organization Project, his multi-disciplinary team studied the organizational aspects of safety-critical systems such as nuclear power, air traffic control, and nuclear aircraft carriers. His research concerns the evolution of large-scale organizations operating technologies demanding very high levels of operating reliable performance across a number of management generations and the relationship of large-scale technical systems and social complexity to political legitimacy. He has examined institutional challenges of multi-generation nuclear missions at Los Alamos National Laboratory, and, more recently, the U.S. National Polar-orbiter Operational Environmental Satellite System. And, in parallel work, he has taken up questions of unconventional crisis management.

He was a fellow of the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, Smithsonian Institution, and elected to the National Academy of Public Administration. National Academy of Sciences service includes membership on the Board on Radioactive Waste Management, panels of the Committee on Human Factors and Transportation Research Board, and the Committees on Long Term Institutional Management of DOE Legacy Waste Sites: Phase Two and Principles and Operational Strategies for Staged Repository Systems. In addition to this committee, he currently serves on the NRC committee on the Assessment of Impediments to Interagency Cooperation on Space and Earth Science Missions. He served on the Secretary of Energy Advisory Board, Department of Energy, and he was on the Technical Review Committee, Nuclear Materials Technology Division, Los Alamos National Laboratory.

Stephen S. Morse, Ph.D., is professor of clinical epidemiology and was founding director of the Center for Public Health Preparedness at Columbia University. His professional interests include epidemiology of emerging infections (a concept he originated), international cooperation for infectious disease surveillance, and defense against bioterrorism. Dr. Morse returned to Columbia in 2000 after four years in government service as program manager at the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA), Department of Defense, where he co-directed the Pathogen Countermeasures Program and subsequently directed the Advanced Diagnostics Program. Before going to Columbia, he was assistant professor (virology) at The Rockefeller University in New York, where he remains an adjunct faculty member. Dr. Morse was chair and principal organizer of the 1989 NIAID/NIH Conference on Emerging Viruses (for which he originated the concept of emerging viruses/infections); served as a member of the Institute of Medicine (IOM)–National Academy of Sciences Committee on Emerging Microbial Threats to Health (and chaired its Task Force on Viruses), and was a contributor to its report, Emerging Infections (1992); was a member of the IOM’s Committee on Xenograft Transplantation; currently serves on the Steering Committee of the IOM’s Forum on Microbial Threats (formerly the Forum on Emerging Infections); and has served as an adviser to the World Health Organization and several government agencies, including the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Department of Defense, and the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene. He is a fellow of the New York Academy of Sciences and a past chair of its microbiology section, a fellow of the American Academy of Microbiology, and an elected life member of the Council on Foreign Relations. He was the founding chair of ProMED (the nonprofit international Program to Monitor Emerging Diseases) and was one of the originators of ProMED-mail, an international network inaugurated by ProMED in 1994 for outbreak reporting and disease monitoring using the Internet.

Kathryn Newcomer, Ph.D., is a professor and director of the Trachtenberg School of Public Policy and Public Administration at the George Washington University where she is also the co-director of the Midge Smith Center for Evaluation Effectiveness, home of The Evaluator’ Institute (TEI). She teaches public and nonprofit administration, program evaluation, research design, and applied statistics. She routinely conducts research and training for federal and local government agencies and nonprofit organizations on performance measurement and program evaluation, and she has designed and conducted evaluations for several U.S. federal agencies and dozens of nonprofit organizations.

Dr. Newcomer has published five books: Improving Government Performance (1989), The Handbook of Practical Program Evaluation (1994, 2nd edition 2004), Meeting the Challenges of Performance-Oriented Government (2002), Getting Results: A Guide for Federal Leaders and Managers (2005), and Transformational Leadership: Leading Change in Public and Nonprofit Agencies (2008), and a volume of New Directions for Public Program Evaluation, Using Performance Measurement to Improve Public and Nonprofit Programs (1997), and numerous articles in journals including Public Administration Review. She is a fellow of the National Academy of Public Administration and currently serves on the Comptroller General’s Educators’ Advisory Panel. She served as president of the National Association of Schools of Public Affairs and Administration (NASPAA) for 2006–2007. She has received two Fulbright awards, one for Taiwan (1993) and one for Egypt (2001–2004). She has lectured on performance measurement and public program evaluation in Ukraine, Brazil, Taiwan, and the United Kingdom.

Dr. Newcomer earned a B.S. in education and an M.A. in political science from the University of Kansas and her Ph.D. in political science from the University of Iowa.

Elizabeth Rindskopf Parker, J.D., has been dean of the McGeorge School of Law at the University of the Pacific since 2002. Her fields of expertise include national security and terrorism, international relations, public policy and trade, technology development and transfer, commerce, and civil rights and liberties litigation. During her tenure as dean at Pacific McGeorge, Dean Parker has begun several grant-supported initiatives involving national security and high school-to-professional educational pipeline programs, designed to support and encourage at-risk students in the preparation needed for success in college and law school.

Before becoming dean of Pacific McGeorge, she was the general counsel for the 26-campus University of Wisconsin System. Earlier she served as general counsel of the National Security Agency (1984–1989), principal deputy legal adviser at the U.S. Department of State (1989–1990), and general counsel for the Central Intelligence Agency (1990–1995). She has also been counsel to several major law firms, Bryan Care, LLP and Surrey & Morse, as well as serving as assistant director for mergers and acquisitions. She began her career as a Reginald Heber Smith Fellow at Emory University School of Law, and she later served as the director of the New Haven Legal Assistance Association, Inc. Later, while a cooperating attorney for the NAACP Legal Defense and Education Fund, she argued successfully twice before the Supreme Court of the United States.

She is a former chair and current member of the Advisory Board of the American Bar Association’s Standing Committee on Law and National Security and a presidentially appointed member of the Public Interest Declassification Board, the Council on Foreign Relations, the Judicial Council of California’s Access and Fairness Advisory Committee, and the Commission for Impartial Courts. She is also the chair of the Sacramento Chapter of the World Affairs Council and a member of the Board of the Sacramento Region Community Foundation.

Paul R. Sackett, Ph.D., is the Beverly and Richard Fink Distinguished Professor of Psychology and Liberal Arts at the University of Minnesota, Twin Cities. His research interests revolve around legal, psychometric, and policy aspects of psychological testing, assessment, and personnel decisionmaking in workplace and educational settings. He has served as the editor of Personnel Psychology, as president of the Society for Industrial and Organizational Psychology, as co-chair of the Joint Committee on the Standards for Educational and Psychological Testing, as a member of the National Research Council’s Board on Testing and Assessment, and as chair of the American Psychological Association’s Board of Scientific Affairs. He served as chair of the Committee on the Youth Population and Military Recruitment from 1999–2003. He has a Ph.D. in industrial and organizational psychology from the Ohio State University.


Adam P. Fagen, Ph.D., is a senior program officer with the Board on Life Sciences of the National Research Council. He came to the National Academies from Harvard University, where he most recently served as preceptor on molecular and cellular biology. He earned his Ph.D. in molecular biology and education from Harvard, working on issues related to undergraduate science courses; his research focused on mechanisms for assessing and enhancing introductory science courses in biology and physics to encourage student learning and conceptual understanding, including studies of active learning, classroom demonstrations, and student understanding of genetics vocabulary. Dr. Fagen also received an A.M. in molecular and cellular biology from Harvard, based on laboratory research in molecular evolutionary genetics, and a B.A. from Swarthmore College with a double-major in biology and mathematics. He served as co-director of the 2000 National Doctoral Program Survey, an online assessment of doctoral programs organized by the National Association of Graduate-Professional Students, supported by the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation, and completed by more than 32,000 students.

At the National Academies, Dr. Fagen has served as study director for Bridges to Independence: Fostering the Independence of New Investigators in Biomedical Research (2005), Treating Infectious Diseases in a Microbial World: Report of Two Workshops on Novel Antimicrobial Therapeutics (2006), 2007 and 2008 Amendments to the National Academies’ Guidelines for Human Embryonic Stem Cell Research (2007, 2008), Understanding Interventions that Encourage Minorities to Pursue Research Careers: Summary of a Workshop (2007), Inspired by Biology: From Molecules to Materials to Machines (2008), Transforming Agricultural Education for a Changing World (2009), and Research at the Intersection of the Physical and Life Sciences (2009). He is currently study director or responsible staff officer for several ongoing projects including the National Academies Summer Institute on Undergraduate Education in Biology and the National Academies Human Embryonic Stem Cell Research Advisory Committee.

Jo L. Husbands, Ph.D., is a scholar/senior project director with the Board on Life Sciences. Dr. Husbands managed the project that produced the 2004 report, Biotechnology Research in an Age of Terrorism, and directs the international activities following up on its recommendations, including the 2nd International Forum on Biosecurity held in Budapest in March 2008 and an international workshop on biosecurity education held in the fall of 2009. She represents the National Academy of Sciences on the Biosecurity Working Group of the InterAcademy Panel on International Issues, which also includes the academies of China, Cuba, the Netherlands (chair), Nigeria, and the United Kingdom. She managed a joint project with the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) that has carried out a survey of AAAS members in the life sciences to provide some of the first empirical data about scientists’ knowledge of dual use issues and their attitudes toward their responsibilities to help mitigate the risks of misuse of scientific research.

From 2005–2008, Dr. Husbands was a senior project director with the Academies’ Program on Development, Security, and Cooperation. From 1991–2005 she was the director of the Committee on International Security and Arms Control (CISAC) of the National Academy of Sciences and its Working Group on Biological Weapons Control. In 1998–1999 she also served as the first director of the Program on Development, Security, and Cooperation in the Academies’ Office of International Affairs. From 1986–1991 she was director of the Academies’ Project on Democratization and a senior research associate for its Committee on International Conflict and Cooperation. Before joining the National Academies, she worked for several Washington, D.C.-based nongovernmental organizations focused on international security.

Dr. Husbands is currently an adjunct professor in the Security Studies Program at Georgetown University. She is a member of the Advisory Council of Women in International Security, the International Institute for Strategic Studies, the Global Agenda Council on Illicit Trade of the World Economic Forum, and the editorial board of International Studies Perspectives. She is also a fellow of the International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry. She holds a Ph.D. in political science from the University of Minnesota and a master’s in international public policy (international economics) from the Johns Hopkins University School of Advanced International Studies.

Rita S. Guenther is a senior program associate with the Committee on International Security and Arms Control at the National Academies, where she has worked since September 2001. In her capacity as a senior program associate, Ms. Guenther has worked on several cooperative projects between U.S. and Russian scientists, including projects on the internationalization of the nuclear fuel cycle, indigenization of Russian nuclear material protection, control, and accounting programs, the future of the biosciences and biotechnology in Russia, and the Nuclear Cities Initiative. She was the project director for a joint National Academies–Russian Academies project on the Future of the Nuclear Security Environment in 2015, and she served as one of two National Academies’ staff officers responsible for the completion of the unique, fast-track consensus study, Strengthening U.S.–Russian Cooperation on Nuclear Nonproliferation. In addition to her work on joint projects with the Russian Academy of Sciences, she has also served on cooperative projects and activities with colleagues from India and Pakistan. Her experience also includes having served as a key staff member for the recent consensus report, Improving Democracy Assistance: Building Knowledge through Evaluations and Research, which provided findings and recommendations to the U.S. Agency for International Development’s Democracy and Governance office. Rita speaks Russian and German, holds a master of arts in Russian studies from Georgetown University, and is currently a Ph.D. student of Russian history at Georgetown University. In 2007, she received a Fulbright-Hayes Fellowship to conduct archival research on her dissertation, which is provisionally titled, Lived Liberalism: Local Expressions of Political Beliefs in Russia, 1860–1914.

Carl-Gustav Anderson joined the Board on Life Sciences of the National Research Council in March 2009 and serves as senior program assistant. He received a B.A. in philosophy from American University in 2009, completing significant research projects on the status of empiricism in Tiantai Buddhism and the influence of modern science on the philosophy and development of the Kyoto School. He has focused his research interests on Southeast Asian interactions with Buddhism, with particular emphasis on the development of Buddhist philosophy of science and Buddhist approaches to feminism. He has worked closely with the All Women’s Action Society (Malaysia), helping to engage young men in feminist dialogue and to present a feminist response to the unique identity politics of contemporary Malaysia.

Copyright © 2009, National Academy of Sciences.
Bookshelf ID: NBK44952


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