2nd International Conference on Women in Physics:  U.S. Delegation


U.S. Delegation to the Second International Conference on Women in Physics

Skip to the Profile of   Kimberly S. Budil | Karen Daniels | Theda Daniels-Race | Melissa Elben-Zayas | Katharine B. Gebbie | Laura H. Greene | Richard Hazeltine | Apriel K. Hodari | K. Renee Horton | Rachel Ivie | Laura E. Kay | Luz J. Martinez-Miranda | Ariel Michelman-Ribeiro | Maria Ong | Juana I. Rudati | Jami M. Valentine | Barbara L. Whitten | Elvira Williams | Yevgeniya V. Zastavker

Kimberly Budil
Kimberly S. Budil


Condensed Matter and Shock Physics.


Karen Daniels
Karen E. Daniels
North Carolina State University


Karen Daniels has a PhD in Physics from Cornell University, and after finishing up her postdoc at Duke University will start this summer at North Carolina State University as an assistant professor. She studies the behavior of nonequilibrium and nonlinear systems, in particular pattern formation in fluids and the dynamics of granular materials. When not doing experiments in the lab she likes to spend time in the outdoors, which has led her to contemplate the implications of her research in natural systems. Before starting graduate school, she taught middle and high school physics, and continues to bring hands-on science activities to local schools and youth programs.


Theda Daniels-Race
Theda Daniels-Race
Louisiana State University


Dr. Theda Daniels-Race is an Associate Professor in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering and the Center for Computation and Technology (CCT), both at Louisiana State University. She has conducted research in the field of electronic materials using molecular beam epitaxy (MBE) to study quantum level phenomena in III-V semiconductors. Her most recent work involves the use of atomic force microscopy (AFM) and fluorescence techniques to examine the morphology of hybrid (organic-inorganic) materials and the nanoscale electronic transport therein. Daniels-Race received her B.S. in electrical engineering from Rice University, her M.S.E.E. from Stanford U., and her Ph.D. from Cornell in EE with a concentration in electrophysics. Throughout her academic training, she also spent time in industry with companies such as Exxon, General Electric, and AT&T Bell Laboratories. Upon completion of her doctorate in 1990, she began her academic career as a faculty member at Duke University where she remained until joining the LSU faculty in 2003. She and her husband, Paul, have two sons.


Melissa Eblen-Zayas
Melissa Eblen-Zayas
Carleton College


Melissa Eblen-Zayas received her BA in physics from Smith College in 1999 and her PhD in experimental condensed matter physics from the University of Minnesota in June 2005. Her research interests lie in understanding how disorder and phase inhomogeneity influence the electronic properties of correlated electron systems. She is now an assistant professor of physics at Carleton College in Northfield, MN. Melissa has been active in the Twin Cities Graduate Women in Science chapter and as a volunteer at the Science Museum of Minnesota. She has recently been experiencing first-hand the challenges associated with the "two-body problem" as her husband is also finishing his PhD, in neuroscience.


Katharine Gebbie
Katharine B. Gebbie


Katharine Gebbie is Director of the Physics Laboratory of the National Institute of Standards and Technology in Gaithersburg Maryland and Boulder Colorado. She is a member of the IUPAP Working Group on Women in Physics and attended the first International Conference on Women in Physics in Paris. She has served on ONR, NASA, NSF, APS and NIST committees addressing the under-representation of women in physics and science. She spent most of her research career in astrophysics at JILA, a research institute operated jointly by NIST and the University of Colorado, where she also served for four years as Division Chief before moving to Gaithersburg in 1990 to design the Physics Laboratory.


Laura Greene
Laura H. Greene
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign


Laura H. Greene, Swanlund Professor of Physics at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, received degrees from Ohio State and her PhD from Cornell, then worked at Bell Laboratories and Bellcore. She researches experimental condensed matter physics focusing on strongly-correlated electron systems, primarily investigating the mechanisms of unconventional superconductivity by planar tunneling and point-contact electron spectroscopies, and develops new, novel materials and methods of materials microanalyses. She has served on numerous committees and boards, including the International Union of Pure and Applied Physicists (IUPAP) as the US representative to the C5 (low-temperature physics) commission and has served on their US Liaison Committee; the Board of Physics and Astronomy of the National Academies of Science; Kavli Institute for Theoretical Physics; Basic Energy Sciences Advisory Committee for the Department of Energy (DoE); Sloan Foundation Fellow Selection Committee; Schedule and Selection Committee and General Council for Gordon Research Conferences; numerous Committees for the American Physical Society (APS) and the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) and the Editorial Board for the Institute of Physics (UK) Journal Reports on the Progress in Physics. Greene is a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, the AAAS and the APS. She received the Maria Goeppert-Mayer Award from the APS, the E. O. Lawrence Award from the DoE and is a visiting scholar for Phi Beta Kappa. Over her career, Greene has co-authored ~150 publications and presented over 250 invited talks. "I am committed to working towards broadening our diversity in science, both in people and in subjects, as this enhances our resources for exploration and discovery in fundamental physics."


Richard Hazeltine
Richard Hazeltine
University of Texas at Austin


Richard Hazeltine is a Physics Professor at the University of Texas. A graduate of Harvard College and the University of Michigan, he worked at the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton before joining the University in 1971. In 1980 he helped establish the Institute for Fusion Studies at Texas, and later served for eleven years as its Director. As a theoretical plasma physicist, Hazeltine has worked in transport theory, kinetic theory and plasma confinement. He was a Councilor of the American Physical Society, Chair of the Division of Plasma Physics and a member of the Board on Physics and Astronomy of the National Research Council. He is now Chair of the Fusion Energy Sciences Advisory Committee for DOE. He is a Fellow of the APS.


Apriel Hodari
Apriel K. Hodari
CNA Corporation


Apriel K. Hodari earned a Ph.D. in experimental nonlinear optics from Hampton University. She used the National Science Foundation's Postdoctoral Fellowship in Science, Mathematics, Engineering and Technology Education, to change fields, and joined the Physics Education Research Group at the University of Maryland. At UMD PERG, she focused on undergraduate physics learning at Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCU) and Women's Colleges. She is continuing and extending this research today. After finishing her postdoc, Hodari set out to broaden her experience by participating in the application of science to the political process. As an AAAS Congressional Science Fellow, she managed a portfolio of issues, including education, health care disparities and funding for scientific research. This was a rich experience that gave her tremendous insight into how national policy is made. In her current position, Hodari combines her policy and research experience as an education research and policy analyst at the CNA Corporation in Alexandria, VA. At CNAC, she has performed analyses of various educational policies, including: the implementation of technology into K-12 education; the influence of education policy and practice on the lives and careers of Navy servicemembers; and the impact of educational background on enlisted personnel attrition throughout the four service communities. Her current projects examine the impact of mathematics content knowledge on middle school principals' instructional leadership, and diversity policies and practices in the United States Air Force. Hodari's current research in physics education extends her previous work on women's colleges and HBCUs with critical ethnographies of institutions that successfully promote the success of minorities and women in undergraduate physics; and explores the impact of physics education research and reform on teaching for social justice. As an extension of this work, she conducts workshops on addressing issues of diversity and inclusion in physical science teaching.


Renee Horton
K. Renee Horton
University of Alabama



Rachel Ivie
Rachel Ivie
American Institute of Physics (AIP)


Dr. Rachel Ivie is Principal Research Associate at the Statistical Research Center of the American Institute of Physics (AIP). She received a Ph.D. in sociology from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (1993), where one of her specializations was the sociology of gender. She is a co-author of the report "Women in Physics and Astronomy, 2005". She also collects data on physics faculty and the academic job market, in addition to working on surveys for AIP's Member Societies and other scientific organizations.


Laura Kay
Laura E. Kay
Barnard College, Columbia University


Laura Kay has a PhD in astrophysics. She is currently an Associate Professor of Physics and Astronomy at Barnard College, Columbia University, and recently completed a 3 year term as Dept Chair. Her work is in observational astronomy where she studies obscuration in active galactic nuclei. She has taught a course `Women and Science' at Barnard for 12 years and will become Chair of Women's Studies next year. She has had visiting positions at CTIO in Chile and at IAGUSP in Sao Paulo, Brazil, and spent a year working as an upper atmosphere physicist at the South Pole in 1985.


Luz Martínez-Miranda
Luz J. Martínez-Miranda
University of Maryland


Dr. Luz J. Martínez-Miranda is an Associate Professor of Materials Science in the Dept. of Materials Science and Engineering at the University of Maryland. Her research interests are in the field of liquid crystals. She has studied their interfacial properties for display applications. Presently, she uses liquid crystals as models for biological systems. She has been involved in programs that advance the careers of women and minorities for many years, and has worked in education programs for children to attract them into the sciences and engineering. She has been a member of the Committee of Minorities of the APS and has been a member and chair of the Committee on the Status of Women in Physics of the APS. She is at present the president of the National Society of Hispanic Physicists. She was made fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science for among other things her work for women, minorities and her efforts in showing students the joy of research.


Ariel Michelman-Ribeiro
Ariel Michelman-Ribeiro
Boston University


Ariel Michelman Ribeiro is a doctoral candidate in Physics at Boston University. She is currently performing her dissertation research in biophysics at the National Institutes of Health. She is Secretary of the Forum on Graduate Student Affairs, the graduate student organization of the American Physical Society. She plans to graduate in May 2006, and after a post-doc, hopes to teach physics at the University level and inspire women to pursue careers in the sciences. Her husband is Brazilian, from Rio de Janeiro, so she has been to Rio many times, is conversant in Portuguese, and will be happy to assist anyone. She is co-editing the conference proceedings with Beverly Hartline.


Maria Ong
Maria Ong
TERC, Harvard University


Maria (Mia) Ong holds a Ph.D. in Education from U.C. Berkeley and is a currently a Postdoctoral Fellow and Lecturer at Harvard University. She studies the social dynamics in physics and engineering. Her first study is an eight-year, qualitative study on the intersections of gender, race/ethnicity, and the culture of physics, based upon the experiences of 36 young, aspiring physicists, including ten women of color. With fellow delegate Professor Yevgeniya V. Zastavker, Dr. Ong also co-directs a pilot study that examines whether project-based learning in undergraduate physics, mathematics, and engineering courses can effectively retain women and minorities in science and engineering.


Juana Rudati
Juana I. Rudati
Argonne National Laboratory


Juana Ines Rudati, Ph.D. is currently a postdoc at Argonne National Laboratory. Her research is at Stanford Linear Accelerator Center as part of the SPPS collaboration. They produce, measure and use the shortest x-ray pulses in the world. Dr. Rudati is interested on the interaction of intense light fields and atoms. Her outreach goals are to make the scientific environment more inviting for everyone. She pursues this by mentoring students and by actively participating in minority serving organizations. She has been a board member of SACNAS and continues her service in various committees. Currently, she is also a member of the Committee on Minorities of the American Physical Society as well as of the Diversity Committee of the National Postdoctoral Association. She lives in California with her husband Michael (who is also a physicist).


Jami Valentine
Jami M. Valentine
Johns Hopkins University


Jami M. Valentine is a 6th year graduate student at Johns Hopkins University. Her dissertation research measures a magnetic property called spin polarization for the heavy rare earth metals using the Point Contact with Andreev Reflection (PCAR) technique. Her advisor is Prof. C.L. Chien. She received her BS in physics from Florida A&M University, and a masters from Brown. She is a native Philadelphian and an avid football fan. In her free time, she researches African American women physicists, and maintains a database on them which can be found at http://www.pha.jhu.edu/~jami/bwip.html


Barbara Whitten
Barbara L. Whitte
Colorado College


Barbara L. Whitten received a BA in physics from Carleton College in 1968, where she was the only woman to major in physics for five years. She received a PhD in mathematical physics from the University of Rochester in 1977, and went on to work at Miami University in Ohio and Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, where she was a member of the team that produced the first x-ray laser. In 1987 she came to Colorado College, where she is Professor of Physics, and also teaches in the Women's Studies and Environmental Science Programs. Her research in physics is in theoretical atomic and molecular physics, where she has worked on problems in x-ray lasers and Rydberg atoms. She also works on a number of projects to help the physics community become more diverse (see http://www.coloradocollege.edu/Dept/PC/RepresentativePhy/Pages/home.htm and http://www.coloradocollege.edu/dept/PC/WhatWorks2004/web%20pages/Home.htm.) She is the mother of two children, both in college. Penelope is majoring in journalism and political science, and Jake is a psychology major.


Elvira Williams
Elvira Williams
Shaw University


Dr. Elvira Williams is a physics professor and Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences at Shaw University in Raleigh, N.C. She earned a B.S. from North Carolina Central University, and M.S. and Ph.D. degrees from Howard University, becoming the 4th African American female in the United States to earn a doctorate in physics. Dr. Williams has spent her career dedicated to teaching and creating opportunities for minority students to pursue STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) careers. She spent 22 years at North Carolina Agricultural and Technical (NCA&T) State University, in Greensboro, NC, where she taught, created special science education service projects for students at NCA&T and for public school physics and other science teachers of North Carolina, and conducted basic research. This pioneering research in diamond thin films, conducted in the Department of Physics, was the most advanced in materials research in the early 1980s. It was the seed for the Ph.D. program in Engineering at NCA&T, which is now the largest enterprise for graduating African American Engineers in the United States. She is also a Cohort 6 (2002-2003) NAFP (NASA Administrator's Fellowship Program) Fellow in nanoscale research. Dr.Williams is also an author, does public speaking, and uses physics to teach character development.


Yevgeniya Zastavker
Yevgeniya V. Zastavker
Franklin W. Olin College of Engineering


Dr. Yevgeniya V. Zastavker joined Olin College of Engineering as an Assistant Professor of Physics after Wellesley College where she had been a Visiting Assistant Professor of Physics since July 2000. She received her Ph.D. in Biological Physics from M.I.T. in June 2001 and her B.S. Yale University in 1995. Prior to arriving to the U.S., she received education at Kiev Pedagogical college and has also been awarded the Red Diploma of graduation with honors from Kiev Evening Musical School, where her concentration was piano. Besides helping to build a new engineering college, which includes creating from clean slate both new curriculum, social, and cultural structures for the college, Dr. Zastavker serves as a founding faculty on the College Committee on Diversity and Academic Affairs, and teaches in the MIT MITES Program (Minority Introduction to Engineering and Science), a rigorous six-week summer program for promising minority high school students. Dr. Zastavker's research interests are two-fold. Firstly, they lie in the field of biological physics, an interdisciplinary field that bridges such diverse areas as physics, biology, chemistry, bio-medical engineering, and chemical engineering. Secondly, Dr. Zastavker is studying the questions pertaining to project-based learning and its effectiveness in recruiting, retaining, and satisfying students, particularly women and minorities, in science and engineering.


Created and Maintained by Yevgeniya V. Zastavker
Last Modified on October 10, 2005