John Besley
Associate Professor, Michigan State University

Dr. Besley studies how views about decision-makers and decision processes affect perceptions of science and technology (S&T) with potential health or environmental impacts. This focus includes consideration of both mediated exposure through newspapers, television programs and web content, as well as face-to-face public engagement exercises (e.g., public meetings). His work emphasizes the need to look at both citizens’ perceptions of decision-makers and decision-makers’ perceptions of the public. More generally, Dr. Besley explores the relationships between media use, public engagement and health and environmental risk perceptions. His research has touched on public perceptions of nanotechnology, biotechnology, and energy technologies (particularly nuclear and hydrogen and fuel cell technologies). He has also been involved in research into journalistic norms related to coverage of public engagement and research to better understand the impact of science and risk communication training.

Diana Bowman
Associate Professor, Arizona State University

Diana’s research has primarily focused on the legal and policy issues associated with emerging technologies, and public health law. Diana has a BSc, a LLB and a PhD in Law from Monash University, Australia. In August 2011 she was admitted to practice as a Barrister and Solicitor of the Supreme Court of Victoria (Australia). More …


Meredith Frie
PhD Candidate, Michigan State University

Meredith Frie is a PhD candidate in Cell and Molecular Biology at Michigan State University. Her research focuses on a viral infection in dairy cows and the virus’s impact on the bovine immune system. In addition to geeking out about science, Meredith’s favorite part of her research is the opportunity to discuss its impact with the community.


Sarah Geren
PhD Student, Arizona State University

Sarah earned her B.S. degree in Conservation Biology and M.Sc. in Biology and Society in the School of Life Sciences at Arizona State University. During her master’s she also worked at ASU’s Center for Biodiversity Outcomes. Both her undergraduate and master’s thesis studied the environmental and health impacts of dietary protein choices made by consumers. Current research interests are broadly centered on environmental policy and societal perceptions of environmental issues. In 2016, she worked at the international marine conservation NGO Oceana as the Seafood Science Intern on the Seafood Fraud campaign, where she helped prepare the “Deceptive Dishes” global seafood fraud report. For summer of 2017, she is interning at the Conservation International and assisting on the World Wide Views on Oceans and Seas project, which CSPO at ASU is a part of. She is currently pursuing a Ph.D. in Human and Social Dimensions of Science and Technology in the School for the Future of Innovation in Society at Arizona State University.

Adam Gross
Sandra Day O’Connor College of Law, Arizona State University

ADAM J. GROSS graduated from Arizona State University with a Bachelor of Science in Marketing. Following graduation Gross followed is fascination with marketing, media, and technology, working for DynaTek Media Corporation, a digital signage company with networks nationwide, becoming the Chief Marketing and Chief Technology Officer. After eight years in the digital signage industry, Adam pivoted to focus on his passion for social justice, graduating from the Sandra Day O’Connor College of Law at Arizona State University in May of 2017. While at Sandra Day O’Connor College of Law, Adam served as an Executive Editor for Jurimetrics: The Journal of Law, Science and Technology, as an Executive Moot Court Board Writing Committee member, as a Research Assistant to Professor Diana Bowman, focusing on emerging technology’s use in combatting insect-vector transmitted diseases, as the UMOM Shelter Director for the Homeless Legal Assistance Project, and worked as a Rule 38 Certified Limited Practice Student at the Maricopa County Office of the Public Defender. Adam plans to practice criminal defense in Phoenix, Arizona.

Emily Frankman
PhD Student, Michigan State University

Emily Frankman is a PhD candidate at Michigan State University in the department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology. Her research is on grass cell walls, focusing on the enzymes involved in ferulate cross-linking. After graduate school, she plans on pursuing a career in science policy. Her hobbies include reading, baking, and playing with her dog and two cats.


Michael Holsapple
Professor, Michigan State University

Dr. Holsapple is a Toxicologist with over 35 years of experience. He received an MS and a PhD in Pharmacology & Toxicology from Purdue University. From 1983–1994, he served on the faculty at the Medical College of Virginia in Richmond, Virginia. From 1994–2002, Dr. Holsapple worked in the Toxicology, Environmental Research & Consulting Laboratories at the Dow Chemical Company in Midland, Michigan. From 2002–2011, Dr. Holsapple served as the Executive Director of the Health and Environmental Sciences Institute (HESI) in Washington, DC. Dr. Holsapple was a Senior Research Leader in systems toxicology at the Battelle Memorial Institute in Columbus, Ohio, from 2011-2014. He became the Executive Director of Global Immunotoxicology at Covance Laboratories (Madison, WI) in late January, 2014. Dr. Holsapple moved to Michigan State University in August, 2015, when he became the Founding Director and Endowed Chair of the Center for Research on Ingredient Safety (CRIS).

Gregory Jaffe
Center for Science in the Public Interest

Gregory Jaffe is the Director of the Project on Biotechnology for the Center for Science in the Public Interest (“CSPI”), a non-profit consumer organization located in the United States. He is a recognized international expert on agricultural biotechnology and biosafety and has published numerous articles and reports on those topics. He was worked on biosafety regulatory issues in the United States and throughout the world. He was a member of the Secretary of Agriculture’s Advisory Committee on Agricultural Biotechnology and 21st Century Agriculture from 2003-2008 and was reappointed for another term from 2011-2016. Gregory Jaffe earned his BA with High Honors from Wesleyan University in Biology and Government and then received a law degree from Harvard Law School.

Andrew Maynard
Professor, Arizona State University

 Andrew’s expertise is in risk innovation, and the responsible development and use of emerging technologies. A well known science communicator, he writes a regular column for the journal Nature Nanotechnology, he is a columnist for The Conversation, and is the creator of the YouTube channel Risk Bites. He also co-chairs the World Economic Forum Global Agenda Council on Nanotechnology. More …


Erin McKay
Graduate Student, Michigan State University

Erin is a doctoral candidate in neuroscience at Michigan State University in the department of Translation Science and Molecular Medicine. She received a Bachelor of Arts degree from Kent State University graduating with a double major in Biology and Psychology in 2013. Her present work is focused on identifying novel mechanisms of vascular dementia (dementia that follows a stroke) in the hope of finding a modifiable target for treatment. She ultimately hopes to pursue a career in science education and outreach.

So Hae (Irene) Park
PhD Student, University of Michigan

So Hae (Irene) Park is a fifth-year Human Genetics PhD student at the University of Michigan. Before attending U of M, she received her BA in Biological Sciences and Philosophy at Cornell University. Now under the joint supervision of Drs. Thomas Wilson and Thomas Glover, Irene is investigating what causes genome instability—an accumulation of mutations in the cells—and how it can be avoided. Genome instability is commonly seen in many human diseases, like cancer. When she is not working during the wee hours in her laboratory or writing/editing for Mi Sci Writers blog or The Michigan Daily, Irene likes to watch crime documentaries, collect cute things, read books by comedians, and walk around Ann Arbor while listening to music. Follow her on Twitter (@S_Park89), find her on LinkedIn, or check out her online portfolioRead more Mi Sci Writers posts by Irene here.

Keri Szejda
Postdoctoral Research Associate, Arizona State University
Keri Szejda

Keri’s research focuses on message design and evaluation on topics related to health and sustainability aspects of food. She has a Doctor of Philosophy in Communication, a Master of Arts in Speech Communication, a Graduate Certificate in Conflict Resolution, and Bachelor of Interdisciplinary Studies.  More …



Mariya Voytyuk
School of Human Evolution and Social Change
Arizona State University

Mariya Voytyuk received her Global Health PhD from Arizona State University’s School of Human Evolution and Social Change in May 2017. Her research examines cross-cultural perceptions of complex health phenomena with a specific focus on lay models of healthy eating styles. Voytyuk received her M.S. in Health Promotion from Indiana University, Bloomington in 2012 and is a Certified Health Education Specialist.

Joe Zagorski
PhD Candidate, Michigan State University

Joe Zagorski is a PhD Candidate in the Institute for Integrative Toxicology at Michigan State University. Joe is an immunotoxicologist and is working to better understand how exposure of to compounds in your environment (i.e. what you eat, drink, breathe in, etc.) change the way your immune system functions, specifically in regards to a stress activated protein called Nrf2. Since a young age, Joe wanted to be a scientist. You can read a personal description of his journey from Bill Nye admirer to scientist on the blog, Civilians of Science