Jon’s interest in genetics arose from a family history of breast and ovarian cancer, which led to the writing of two books on population genetics: Abraham’s Children: Race, Identity and the DNA of the Chosen People (2007) and Taboo: Why Black Athletes Dominate Sports and Why We’re Afraid to Talk About It (2001). He’s also written on the politics of food and farming: Let Them Eat Precaution: How Politics is Undermining the Genetic Revolution in Agriculture (2005) and Crop Chemophobia: Will Precaution Kill the Green Revolution? (2006); and on science and risk: Scared to Death: How Chemophobia Threatens Public Health. Jon has been a contributing columnist at hundreds of media outlets around the world. He spoke before the National Academy of Sciences and the Australian National Press Club on GMO safety. Before becoming a print journalist, Jon was a producer and executive for 20 years at NBC News and ABC News, winning 20 journalism honors, including a National Press Club Consumer Journalism Award and Emmys for specials on the reform movements in China and the former Soviet Union. He was head of documentaries and Tom Brokaw’s long-time producer at NBC News. He studied philosophy in college and received a National Endowment for the Humanities Fellowship at the University of Michigan.
In 2002, Ludwig founded Ludwig Business Consultants, a woman-owned business enterprise located in the Philadelphia, PA region. She is an effective leader in the development, communication, and execution of strategic plans; an expert in implementing internal financial management reporting systems; experienced with external bank, government, tax, and audit relationships; and an entrepreneurial thinker skilled in empowering and encouraging others to perform their best. Prior to launching her firm, she spent several years in senior financial management positions with public and private companies and was an auditor with Arthur Andersen in the Washington, D.C., where she specialized in government contracting and not-for-profit organizations. Other specialty areas include manufacturing and distribution, call center operations, and professional services. Phyllis is a graduate of The Catholic University of America where she earned her degrees in Accounting and Economics. She received her Executive MBA from Temple University Fox School of Business where she was awarded the Dean’s Certificate of Excellence.
Tim has been a journalist for more than two decades, serving as both an editor and a writer, covering a wide range of subjects, including Monsanto, biotechnology and agriculture. Past employers include the Orlando Sentinel and the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. He has won numerous writing awards during his journalism career, including a 2015 national feature writing award from the Society of American Business Editors and Writers for a story on a sustainable farm located outside of St. Louis. He received his journalism degree from Oklahoma State University. He lives in Orlando.
Dale McGowan, Social Media Editor
Dale McGowan served as founding executive director of Foundation Beyond Belief, the world’s largest humanist philanthropic organization. He has written and edited nine books on subjects from nonreligious parenting to communicating scientific values and concepts to friends and family and was named 2008 Harvard Humanist of the Year. Dale holds a BA in evolutionary anthropology from UC Berkeley and a PhD in music composition from the University of Minnesota. He lives in Atlanta. Follow him at his website or on Twitter @DaleAMcGowan.
Kayleen communicates complex concepts through animation, infographics, data visualization and writing. She earned her PhD in neuroscience from the University of Iowa in 2017, preceded by a BA in neuroscience from Vanderbilt University, and focuses on designing and communicating challenging scientific concepts to the public through engaging visuals.
Ricki Lewis, Senior Contributing Columnist
Ricki is a science writer with a PhD in genetics. She is the author of the only popular book on gene therapy, The Forever Fix: Gene Therapy and the Boy Who Saved It (St. Martin’s Press, 2013); Human Genetics: Concepts and Applications (McGraw-Hill, 2018); Human Genetics: The Basics (Routledge Press, 2017); and has also published an intro biology book, two human anatomy and physiology books, an essay collection, and a novel about stem cells. She writes the DNA Science blog at PLOS and contributes regularly to Medscape Medical News. Ricki is an adjunct professor at the Alden March Bioethics Institute at Albany Medical College and is a genetic counselor. She is a frequent public speaker and has published thousands of articles, mostly about biotechnology and medical genetics, since 1982. www.rickilewis.com @rickilewis
Marc Brazeau, Senior Contributing Columnist
Marc writes about food politics, sustainable agriculture and nutrition at the Food and Farm Discussion Lab. The lab is a micro-think tank approaching food system issues from an evidence-based, agromodernist perspective. One of the central projects of FAFDL is fostering an online community providing respectful, evidence-based discussion on all matters related to food and farming. Marc has a long history with food. He picked cucumbers while in junior high and did orchard work in high school. He was a union organizer and a chef before his work as a food policy writer. Follow him on Twitter @eatcookwrite.
Andrew has been a writer and editor for more than 20 years, and has worked as a public information officer for the Salk Institute and the University of California-Irvine. His articles haves appeared in ScienceNOW, Entomology Today, American Association of Pharmaceutical Science, Newsday, CBS News and San Francisco Chronicle. He has a BA in anthropology from the University of Pennsylvania and a MS in biotechnology from the University of Maryland. Andrew has also worked with a number of biotechnology and device firms, ranging from startups to Pfizer.
Kristen is a science journalist, specializing in the areas of psychology, health, and the intersection of sociology and culture. Her focus is in bridging aspects of the humanities and science, and making science information accessible and meaningful to a wide variety of individuals. Originally from North Dakota, Kristen is currently based in Vancouver, Canada. She received her bachelor’s degree in English from Simon Fraser University and is completing her Master’s degree in Counselling Psychology. A lifelong learner with many interests, she has completed certificates in epigenetics, personalized medicine, physiology, genetics and evolution, Buddhism and modern psychology. Kristen is host of the Humans of Earth podcast. www.kristenhovet.com @kristenhovet
David is an astrobiologist and physician. He has produced and edited educational materials on medical genetics, aerospace medicine, hyperbaric medicine, neurology and hematology. He is featured frequently on Discover Magazine’s The Crux and other online and print media. Since 2002, He has collaborated with The Planetary Society on three experiments that have flown in space designed to improve our understanding of the biological effects of deep space radiation.
Kat Arney, Senior Contributor
Dr Kat Arney is an award-winning science writer, public speaker and broadcaster, and author of the popular genetics books Herding Hemingway’s Cats and How to Code a Human. She holds a first class degree in Natural Sciences and a PhD from Cambridge University, specializing in biomedical science, genetics and mammalian development. After leaving the lab, Kat spent 12 years in the science communications team at Cancer Research UK. She co-founded the charity’s ground-breaking Science Blog and podcast, provided comms and media training for researchers and acted as a principal media spokesperson on national and international TV and radio. Kat also is the founder and director of First Create the Media, a communications consultancy for people who do science. She and her team work with established companies, biotech start-ups, research organisations, charities and universities, providing consultancy, copywriting, podcast and video production, science communication training and one-to-one coaching. When she’s not working, Kat loves baking bread, making music, drinking single malt whisky and snuggling spaniels. Find her on Twitter @Kat_Arney