About Us

At the Center for Infectious Disease Research, our mission is to make transformative scientific advancements that lead to the prevention and treatment of infectious diseases.


Board of Trustees
Faculty & Staff
Board of Trustees

Rosemary Barker Aragon, MPA

Governance Committee Chair

Retired Health Care Foundation Executive Director and Health Care Executive

A successful business and community leader with particular commitment to healthcare, Rosemary Barker Aragon has been instrumental in putting together partnerships between organizations, both public and private, and has a proven ability to communicate with business leaders, elected officials, and a wide range of professionals.

Rosemary was the founding Executive Director of the Pacific Hospital PDA (a public development authority and a healthcare foundation that owned the landmark building on Beacon Hill that served as Amazon.com’s initial corporate headquarters). The organization used its funds to fund organizations providing healthcare to low income and uninsured/underinsured persons. In the capacity of a building owner, she was responsible for the amicable termination of a long-term lease and for negotiation of a new 30-year lease. One key tenant of the property, leased to the State of Washington, is now the Seattle College’s healthcare training program. Prior to that she held a number of high level positions at Group Health Cooperative. During her over 25 years at GHC, she was the delivery system leader for a number of clinical information systems implementations, she had overall responsibility for 6 primary care clinics, and she led an internal consulting group. Prior to her healthcare career, she held management positions with King County, the Puget Sound Regional Council, and the City of Seattle.

Rosemary has a BA, with honors, from the University of Washington. She also holds a Masters of Public Administration from the Evan’s School of Public Policy & Governance (University of Washington).

Rosemary served as a Rotary District Governor in 2002-03. Since then, she has had many appointed leadership responsibilities within the 10 west-coast Districts that comprise Rotary Zones 25/26. This included Public Image and PR. In 2016 she chairs a major conference for Rotary leaders from 7 states and British Columbia Canada.

She has most recently served on the Canadian Landmine Foundation, the Rotary-Malaria Partnerships, and was the founding Board president of Project Access NW (PANW). She was the founding President of the Rotary District 5030 Service Fund Foundation and President of the University Rotary Service Fund (Foundation) Board.

Rosemary has participated in polio National Immunization efforts in Ethiopia and led four humanitarian projects in Guatemala and Mexico.

Rosemary also served nine years, including a term as Board president, at the Villa Academy. She led the first capital campaign for the school. She was a Board member of FIUTS (the Foundation for International Understanding through Students) at the University of Washington.

Perry Atkins

Director, Private Wealth Management | RW Baird & Co

Perry Atkins is a Director and Financial Advisor with The Atkins Lund Group serving the high net worth community. Perry started his career in 1983 and early on served as a securities industry regulator, compliance officer, and operations manager before becoming an investment Advisor in 1993. Perry has been with RW Baird since 2014 when his predecessor firm McAdams Wright Ragen merged with Baird. Previous to that, he was an Investment Advisor with Ragen Mackenzie.

An East Coast native, Perry and his wife Christine have lived in Seattle since 1986 and reside on Magnolia in Seattle. They have just sent their only child (daughter- Cooper) off to college in Washington DC. Perry serves and has served on a number of boards and committees in the non-profit community including the Seattle Children’s’ Theatre Board & as Chair of their Foundation, UCDS (a private school in Seattle), and the Fundraising Cabinet for United Way of King County. He is also chair of the Baird Charitable Contributions Committee in Seattle. Perry and his family love to travel and are accomplished cooks.

Mark Ashida

Immediate Past Chair

Chief Executive Officer, Symform

Mark Ashida is the CEO at Symform, a cloud storage and backup service. While the Managing Director at OVP Venture Partners, Ashida focused on investments in datacenter, IT infrastructure, SaaS, Networking, Security and Enterprise Software. Prior to joining OVP, Mark served as General Manager of Windows Enterprise Networking at Microsoft Corporation, where he was responsible for the networking infrastructure and authentication servers. Prior to Microsoft, Mark was Chief Operating Officer at InterTrust, a public company (ITRU). Before joining InterTrust, Mark was also a General Manager at Intel Architecture Labs involved in the spinout of PassEdge, a green business in security, networking and digital rights management. Mark was CEO of an early venture-backed WAN networking equipment company sold to 3Com, and involved as a turnaround of one of the earliest web measurement companies. He also was a partner at Braxton Associates, acquired by Deloitte & Touche, and leader of its West Coast Strategy Practice. He currently serves on the Board of Directors for the Institute for Systems Biology, Avenda, RedSeal, Serus and Symform, and is a Board Observer to Adapx, CradlePoint, Lucid Commerce, Collaborative Software Initiative and Scout Analytics. Mark received his undergraduate degree from Pomona College and his MBA from Harvard Business School. Mark grew up as the son of a US diplomat and spent most of his pre-college life in Africa, the Middle East, and Asia.

Patrice Auld

Advancement Committee Chair

Patrice and her husband Kevin have been involved with the Center for Infectious Disease Research as donors and volunteers since 2001. He is an orthopedic surgeon and was formerly the head team physician for the Seahawks; currently, he serves as a consultant to the Seahawks and Mariners. A graduate of NYU, Patrice has worked in the film industry, and is the producer of several films. She has philanthropic interests in Seattle, New York and Los Angeles. In addition to her work with events at the Center, she is also very involved with Conservation International, the Film School, and the Pacific Northwest Ballet. She has previously co-chaired the Passport to Global Health (now Gala for Global Health) planning committee.

Gregg Blodgett

Treasurer; Finance & Audit Committee Chair

Director, Booyami, Inc.

Previously CFO at PHAMIS, Inc., (NASDAQ:PHAM); SVP TeleCommunication Systems Corp. (NASDAQ:TSYS), CFO at Twisted Pair Solutions, Gregg Blodgett joined Booyami, Inc. in 2011. He has more than 30 years of finance and operating experience in public and private companies, with a focus in the last 20 years in emerging technology businesses. AS CFO at PHAMIS, he directed the firm's successful initial public offering and subsequent merger with IDX Systems Corp and as CFO and VP at XYPOINT the sale of the firm to TSYS. Gregg began his career with Deloitte & Touche and was also a Vice President of Rainier Bancorporation. He is a summa cum laude graduate of the University of Washington. Prior board service includes University of Washington Alumni Association (past President), Boys & Girls Club, King County (past Chairman), WSCPA (Past Treasurer & Chair of Strategic Planning).

Steven Clifford


Steven Clifford served as CEO of National Mobile Television (1992-2000), CEO of King Broadcasting (1987-1992), CFO of King Broadcasting (1978-1987) and Special Deputy Comptroller of the City of New York (1974-1977) during the City’s fiscal crisis. Now retired, he serves on the boards on Laird Norton Company, Winona Capital Management, and Mosaica, Inc. He previously served on the boards of US Bank (1987-1997), Harbor Properties (1992-2012), and Todd Shipyards (1992-2011). He is a trustee of the Seattle Opera, KING FM and the Seattle Parks Foundation. He also writes humor blogs, mostly political, for The Huffington Post. He received an MBA with Distinction from Harvard Business School in 1968 and a BA as an art history major from Columbia University in 1964. He and his wife of 40-plus years, Judith, have two married daughters, one an entrepreneur and the other a business reporter for The New York Times.

David Goesling

VP Finance Consultant

Dave Goesling has over 30 years of financial and accounting experience with rapidly-growing, technology-based companies are deploying new and often disruptive technologies improving the world in some way. Currently, Dave is a financial consultant for biotechnology companies. Prior to that, Dave was the CFO for RF Surgical Systems, a venture capital backed medical device company that developed and sold the leading system to eliminate retained surgical items, a costly medical error that can occur during surgery. Prior to joining RF Surgical, Dave held finance and accounting positions with increasing levels of responsibility in the wireless services industry for 12 years, wireline/fiber telecommunications companies, and an internet-based service company. He began his career in the auditing group at Deloitte & Touche. Dave has a Bachelor degree in Business Administration – Accounting Concentration from the University of Washington, an MBA degree from the University of Chicago, and achieved a Certified Public Accountant designation.

Irwin L. Goverman


Principal, Deloitte Consulting (retired) & Owner, Vinum Wine Importing & Distributing

Irwin Goverman was a Principal in Deloitte Consulting’s Life Sciences Practice, serving pharmaceutical, biotechnology and medical technology clients for 34 years. He also led Deloitte’s CIO Services practice for life sciences, which addresses technology and business process strategy, management, organization, selection, value and quality. His clients included Allergan, Amgen, Applied Biosystems/Invitrogen/Thermo, Baxter, Bio-Rad, Genentech, Johnson & Johnson, Vertex.

Prior to focusing on life sciences, he consulted for major health plans and health care provider organizations, and he also spent four years as Vice President of Information Systems and CIO for Group Health Cooperative. He retired from Deloitte in June, 2016 and now works part-time at a local wine and spirits importer and distributor in Seattle, where he is a co-owner.

His not-for-profit experience includes Board involvement with the Seattle Children’s Museum (chair), Woodland Park Zoo (Finance, Technology and Animal Care), Center for Healthcare Quality (chair) and Seattle Children’s (Health Information Technology Committee).

Prior to joining Deloitte’s predecessor firm, Touche Ross, in 1980, Mr. Goverman worked for Digital Equipment Corporation and Hughes Aircraft Company in information technology development and management. He has a BA in Computer Science from Brandeis University and an MBA in Finance and Accounting from UCLA.

Kevin Kelly, JD

Vice Chair; Business Development Committee Chair

Business Consultant, Drug & Vaccine Collaborations
Partner, Cooley LLP, retired

The majority of Kevin Kelly’s legal career focused on structuring and negotiating complex drug and vaccine collaborations on behalf of both for-profit and non-profit entities. Among other clients, he represented Otsuka Pharmaceutical Co, Ltd, of Japan in connection with many transactions and represented PATH in connection with several transactions funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation for the development of vaccines in the developing world. Kelly retired from Cooley in 2012, but keeps busy with consulting and travel. He received his JD from the University of California, Berkeley, where he served as Head Notes and Comments Editor of the California Law Review and was elected to Order of the Coif. He received a BA summa cum laude in Economics from Gonzaga University. Additionally, he clerked as a judicial extern to the Honorable Stanley Mosk (Supreme Court of California) and served as a law clerk to the Honorable Eugene A. Wright (US Court of Appeals, Ninth Circuit). He has served on several boards, including Legal Foundation of Washington (past chair), Big Brothers King County (now Big Brothers, Big Sisters; past Chair), Washington Biotechnology & Biomedical Association (officer, executive committee).

John Kelly

Senior Vice President, Global Responsibility & Public Policy, Starbucks Coffee Company

John Kelly is Senior Vice President of Global Responsibility & Public Policy at Starbucks, where he oversees the development and execution of Starbucks strategies and functions including corporate responsibility, ethical sourcing and environmental impact, public policy, and government affairs for all brands across all business units and geographic regions. He is based at the corporate headquarters in Seattle, Washington.

Before beginning his role at Starbucks in 2013, John worked at Microsoft’s Redmond, Washington headquarters where he led a variety of global policy, regulatory, and political initiatives over his 15 year career there. His most recent position was vice president of the Industry Affairs Group in Microsoft’s Legal and Corporate Affairs Department. Prior to this assignment, John worked in Europe as the leader of Corporate Affairs for Europe, Middle East, and Africa where he led policy and CSR strategies. He then returned to Redmond to help start- up Microsoft’s citizenship program. He was one of the early members of its Government Affairs organization, helping steward the growth and importance of that organization to Microsoft. Before Microsoft, John worked for nearly a decade in Washington, D.C. in a variety of government policy roles.

John graduated from Stanford University with a degree in political science in 1988. He earned his law degree from the Washington College of Law in 1993 and is a member of the Washington State Bar. John is a member on the Nature Conservancy Business Council and sits on the board of the Washington Wildlife & Recreation Coalition.

John lives with his wife and three children in Kirkland, Washington.

Alan J. Levy, Ph.D.

Venture Partner, Frazier Healthcare Ventures

Dr. Levy brings more than 30 years of experience in the medical device industry, and he joined Frazier Healthcare in 2007 as a Venture Partner. Prior to co-founding Vertis Neuroscience, he served as President and CEO of Heartstream, a company that developed, manufactured, and marketed an innovative automatic external defibrillator that revolutionized the treatment of sudden cardiac arrest. He successfully guided the company through product development, venture financing, U.S. Food and Drug Administration marketing clearance, product launch, manufacturing scale-up, an initial public offering, worldwide sales and distribution, and the sale of the company to Hewlett-Packard. Prior to joining Heartstream, he was President of Heart Technology, which developed, manufactured, and marketed devices for removing plaque from coronary arteries. Dr. Levy effectively led Heart Technology through key business and product development milestones. The company was sold to Boston Scientific in 1995. Before joining Heart Technology, Dr. Levy was Vice President of Research and New Business Development and a member of the Board of the Ethicon division of Johnson & Johnson. He has served on the boards of Intuitive Surgical, a public company, and Proteus. Dr. Levy received his bachelor’s degree in chemistry from City University of New York and his doctorate in organic chemistry from Purdue University.

Mark Mathewson

Assurance Partner, Ernst & Young

Mark Mathewson is an Assurance Partner with Ernst & Young in Seattle and has been with the firm for 20 years. Mark has extensive experience with multinational account coordination and has a wealth of experience on public filings, including initial public offerings, follow-on offerings, public and private debt refinancing, mergers and acquisitions, review of complex revenue transactions, IT system changes, and implementation of internal controls rationalization and optimization.

Mark has served clients in a number of industries including technology, not-for-profit foundations, high tech manufacturing, telecom, life science, aerospace, governmental contractors, and retail and distribution industries, including; Amazon.com, The Casey Family Foundation, Salesforce.org/Salesforce.com Foundation, Plum Creek Timber, T-Mobile, Rover.com, Intersect ENT, Aviation Partners Boeing, Univar, Itron and NANA Regional Corporation. He also was executive board member and treasure of Denise Louie Education Center for 6 years.

Mark is accredited in International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS) and is a national resource for consultation and training under IFRS. In his role as IFRS Leader for Seattle, he has direct access to the firm’s national leaders on leases, revenue recognition, consolidation/non- controlling interest and many others.

In 2001, Mark returned from a two-year overseas assignment in our Cambridge, England office working on clients, mainly in telecom and life sciences.

Mark graduated magna cum laude with a Bachelor of Arts degree in accounting from Western Washington University in 1995. He is a certified public accountant in the state of Washington and member of the WSCPA and AICPA.

Trevor Moody

President, TM Strategic Advisors LLC

Trevor Moody is the President of TM Strategic Advisors, specializing in management consulting for emerging and established medical technology companies. He is also a Managing Director with MH Carnegie & Co., a leading Australian venture capital firm. His industry experience is in medical device R&D and as a management consultant. Trevor has a broad experience with over 25 years in the development, commercialization and funding of innovative, growth-oriented medical technologies. He was most recently a General Partner at Frazier Healthcare Ventures, a leading healthcare venture capital and private equity investment firm with over $2.0 billion under management. For 8 of his 10 years at Frazier, Trevor co-led the medical device team and became known as an active and well-regarded investor. He holds a bachelor's degree in electrical engineering (biomedical focus) from the University of Southern Queensland, Australia, and an MBA from MIT. Trevor is also a director at electroCore LLC, a leading neurostimulation company, developing therapies that directly, and non-invasively, target nerve signal imbalances and restore normal neurological function.

Brian Olsavsky

Chief Financial Officer, Amazon.com

Brian Olsavsky is the Chief Financial Officer for Amazon.com. Having been with Amazon since 2002, his previous positions include CFO of the World Wide Consumer Business Group at Amazon.com, leading a team of over 300 professionals in nearly a dozen countries (2011-2015); Vice Presidencies of Finance in the International and North American Retail functions (2007-2011), as well as leading finance for Amazon’s World Wide Operations group (2002-2007). Previously, he served as the Vice President of Finance for World Wide Logistics for Fisher Scientific International (now Thermo Fisher Scientific), where he was responsible for the entire finance organization, supporting worldwide distribution, supply chain, transportation, and customer service. He also served as VP of Finance for the Fisher Chemicals business in New Jersey from 1995-1997. A native of Pennsylvania, he is a graduate of Penn State University with a degree in mechanical engineering. He later went on to receive an MBA in finance from the Tepper School of Business at Carnegie Mellon. In 2013, he received the Alumni Service Award from Carnegie Mellon in recognition of his achievements and service. He serves on the Tepper School’s Business Advisory Board and is the founder and first president of the Seattle Alumni chapter.

T.J. Petrizzo

T.J. Petrizzo is the founder of The Petrizzo Group, Inc., a bipartisan national public affairs and communications firm that represents a broad range of private and public sector organizations many of whom have headquarters or principle operations located in the Pacific Northwest. Since 1999, the firm has been widely recognized for delivering effective high-quality public affairs, corporate communications and government relations services to its clients.

Prior to starting The Petrizzo Group, T.J. spent 11 years as a Congressional staff member, culminating with his service as a Chief of Staff in the House Leadership for former Congresswoman Jennifer Dunn, Vice Chair of the House Republican Conference. His previous experience included serving on staff of Senator Olympia Snowe, Ways and Means Aide to Congressman Rod Chandler, and Congressman Craig James. He received a B.A. in Politics from DeSales University in Pennsylvania and an M.A. in American Government from The American University in Washington, D.C.

Brian Schwartz, CFA

Managing Director, BlackRock Alternative Advisors

Brian Schwartz is a member of BlackRock Alternative Advisors (BAA), the firm's Hedge Fund Solutions team. Within BAA, Schwartz is a member of the Absolute Return Strategies Manager Research group and is responsible for the sourcing, performance of due diligence on, and monitoring of hedge fund managers. His service with the firm dates back to 2001, including his years with Quellos Group, LLC, of which the alternative investment management business was acquired by BlackRock in 2007. At Quellos, Schwartz served as an associate director, focused on underlying manager due diligence with Quellos Europe, Ltd. He earned a BA degree in business administration with a concentration in finance from the University of Washington in 2001.

David R. Stewart, JD

Executive Vice President & General Counsel, Vulcan, Inc.

David Stewart is Executive VP and General Counsel at Vulcan, Inc. He directly leads the legal and communications teams, and plays a senior management role for Vulcan and affiliated companies, including the Seahawks, Sounders, Trail Blazers, EMP, Allen Institute for Brain Science, and Stratolaunch Systems. Prior to joining Vulcan in May 2012, Stewart was a partner with Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati, in a broad range of litigation, regulatory, and alternative dispute resolution proceedings in the U.S. and Asia. While with Howrey as an equity partner from 2007 - early 2011, he represented private and public technology-based companies and venture capital firms in litigation and regulatory proceedings and ongoing corporate counseling. Previous positions include Associate General Counsel, Deputy General Counsel, and Vice President (Real Networks; 2001-2007); Vice President & General Counsel, Senior Vice President/Chief Administrative Officer, General Counsel, and Secretary (Emerald Solutions, Inc.; 1999-2001); and Associate and Partner (Sidley & Austin; 1994-1999). Prior board experience includes University of California, Boalt Hall Alumni Association, where his service included a stint as board president. He received his JD from the University of California Boalt Hall School of Law, Head Notes and Comments Editor for the California Law Review. He received his M.Sc. (Jurisprudence) from the University of Edinburgh, and his AB cum laude (Government) from Harvard College.

Rob Thomas

Vice President, AEGLive Pacific Northwest | Owner, Pragmatic Management

Although Thomas was born in New York City and spent formative years living in Europe, his music career began in Boulder, Colorado. While his degree from CU-Boulder is in architecture/planning, it was the burgeoning music scene in the eclectic college town that nurtured his career path. As a student, Thomas would peer through the windows of the then under-­construction Fox Theatre each day, anticipating its opening. Once it did open, he started on the theatre’s street team, eventually working his way up to become general manager and is now a part owner of Fox and Boulder Theater.

SFX/Live Nation recognized Rob’s potential from his work at The Fox and asked him to run the Fillmore Denver (3,600 capacity) in 2003 and Fiddler’s Green Amphitheater (18,000 capacity) in 2006.

When Chuck Morris left Live Nation to start AEGLive Rocky Mountains he brought Thomas with him to create the Mile High Music Festival in 2008. He also co-­created the first ever winter show at Red Rocks Amphitheater. In addition to the winter festivals, Thomas has produced the Jazz Aspen Snowmass Music Festival, as well as the Decadence New Years Eve Music festival for 25,000 music fans.

Thomas has worked with many nonprofits, producing fundraising concerts with Bon Jovi for University Hospital, Rage Against the Machine for the 2008 Democratic National Convention, Beach Boys for 9/11Remberance 2011 and Governor Hickenlooper’s Inaugural Ball. Thomas also played an instrumental role in developing Colorado Music Hall of Fame, serving as a board member for four years.

The opportunity to conquer the Pacific Northwest came through AEGLive when Thomas was asked to run point for the Seattle Office. The AEGLive Pacific Northwest assets include both Showbox venues and beautiful outdoor amphitheater at Marymoor Park in Redmond, as well as regional shows in Oregon, Montana, Idaho and Vancouver. The opportunity to produce the Bumbershoot Music Festival became an option in 2014. With great success in 2015, the future is bright for Bumbershoot.

Throughout the years, the only constant for Thomas has been DeVotchKa. He’s been managing the band’s success since day one in the late 1990’s, from the backing band for burlesque shows to performing in front of 90,000 fans at soccer stadiums in Europe. After years of hard work and dedication, recognition shined down with a Grammy Nomination for the band’s scoring of the hit indie movie Little Miss Sunshine. The band continues to score films (ie. Crazy,Stupid,Love and Paddington Bear) and tour the world recently doing first trip to South America.

Faculty & Staff


John Aitchison, PhD

President, Director, and Professor

John Aitchison is the third president and director of the Center for Infectious Disease Research. He previously held the position of Chief Science Officer, and joined the Center in 2011 to advance the mission through the development and application of systems biology approaches to infectious diseases. John received his PhD in Biochemistry from McMaster University, Canada. He performed postdoctoral research in the Laboratory of Cell Biology at The Rockefeller University under the guidance of Professor Gunter Blobel (Nobel Laureate, 1999). Dr. Aitchison is a founding faculty member at the Institute for Systems Biology where he served as Senior Vice President and Executive Director of Integrative Biology. Professor Aitchison holds part-time, adjunct or affiliate faculty positions at Institute for Systems Biology, University of Washington (Biochemistry), University of Alberta (Cell Biology) and University of British Columbia (Biochemistry). Outside of the lab, John enjoys spending time with his family, playing squash, and racing sailboats.

Kenneth D. Stuart

Founder and Professor

Founder and Professor: Center for Infectious Disease Research

Dr. Stuart is an Affiliate Professor of Global Health and chaired the Department of Pathobiology from 1996 to 2004 at the University of Washington. Dr. Stuart received a BA in Biology from Northeastern University, Boston, MA (1963), a MA in Biology from Wesleyan University, Middletown, CT (1965) and a Ph.D. in Zoology from the University of Iowa, Iowa City, IA (1969). He received postdoctoral training in biochemistry at the National Institute for Medical Research, London (1969-70) and SUNY Stony Brook (1970-72) before becoming an Assistant Professor of Biology at the University of South Florida (1972-76) prior to moving to Washington in 1976 to found the Center. He is an expert on the molecular and cell biology of parasitic pathogens and is known for his groundbreaking studies of RNA editing, a novel fundamental genetic process. He led a consortium for the discovery of drugs for parasitic diseases and was a leader in an international consortium that sequenced and interpreted the genomes of three related parasites.

Stefan Kappe, PhD

Director of Translational Science and Professor

Stefan Kappe is a professor at the Center for Infectious Disease Research. He joined the Center in 2003 and established the malaria transmission laboratory that advances research on malaria parasite biology, immunology, and vaccine development. Dr Kappe received his undergraduate degree in biology from the Friedrich Wilhelms University, Germany and his PhD in Molecular Biology and Parasitology from the University of Notre Dame. He performed postdoctoral research in the Laboratory of Professor Victor Nussenzweig at New York University School of Medicine. Professor Kappe is the Scientific Director of the Malaria Clinical Trials Center, where early stage malaria vaccine and drug candidates are tested in humans. He holds an affiliate faculty position at the University of Washington (Global Health). Outside of the lab, Stefan enjoys traveling, scuba diving, coleopterology, and bird watching.


Alan Aderem, PhD

Professor and Director

Alan Aderem, PhD became president of the Center for Infectious Disease Research in 2012. Aderem is a biologist, specializing in immunology and cell biology, with particular emphasis on the innate immune system, generally regarded as the body’s first line of defense to any pathogen. His laboratory’s research aims to significantly impact global health, focusing on diseases afflicting people the world over, including HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis, malaria, and influenza. Aderem is also working to integrate systems biology, an approach he helped pioneer, into programs across the Center with the goal of accelerating vaccine and drug development. Aderem co-founded the Institute for Systems Biology (ISB) with Leroy Hood and Ruedi Aebersold in 2000 and served as its Director until 2011. A native of South Africa, Aderem obtained his Ph.D. at the University of Cape Town and completed a postdoctoral fellowship at The Rockefeller University in New York in the laboratory of Dr. Zanvil Cohn. Aderem rose through the ranks at The Rockefeller University, becoming head of the Laboratory of Signal Transduction in 1991. In 1996, he accepted a professorship of Immunology and Medicine at the University of Washington in Seattle. In his free time, Dr. Aderem enjoys sailing.

Christoph Grundner, PhD

Associate Professor

Christoph Grundner joined the Center for Infectious Disease Research in 2009. Dr. Grundner received his PhD from the University of Heidelberg, Germany, for work on HIV vaccine design at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute/Harvard Medical School in Boston. He continued working on HIV at the Karolinska Institute in Stockholm, Sweden, before joining Tom Alber’s group at the University of California at Berkeley for a postdoc. There, Dr. Grundner discovered his interest in Mycobacterium tuberculosis, using structural biology and chemical tools to understand Mtb virulence mechanisms, work for which he received fellowships from the American Lung Association and the New York Community Trust, Heiser Fund. His interest in Mtb pathogenesis led him to the Center, where he has been an Assistant Professor since 2009. Dr. Grundner is also an Affiliate Assistant professor in the Department of Global Health and a member of the Molecular and Cell Biology Program at the University of Washington, Seattle.

Alexis Kaushansky, PhD

Assistant Professor

Alexis Kaushansky is an Assistant Professor at the Center for Infectious Disease Research. Alexis received her Bachelors in Science in Chemistry from Harvey Mudd College in 2004, and her Ph.D. from Harvard University in 2010. During her Ph.D., she trained with Gavin MacBeath, where she was fortunate to work as part of an interdisciplinary team that included chemists, computer scientists and biologists to develop protein array technology, and apply this approach to understanding the molecular changes that occur in cancer. She joined Stefan Kappe’s group as a postdoctoral fellow in 2010 to use similar technologies to uncover changes that occur in the liver in response to malaria infection. In 2015, she started a lab at the Center which is focused on discovering how pathogens, such as malaria, interact with their human host, and using this knowledge to eliminate infection. Outside of work, Alexis enjoys running, cooking, traveling and debating current events.

Peter J. Myler, PhD

Professor and Director of Core Services

Peter Myler is Professor and Director of Core Services at the Center for Infectious Disease Research. He earned his PhD in Biochemistry in 1982 from the University of Queensland while studying malaria proteins at Queensland Institute of Medical Research in Brisbane, Australia. After post-doctoral research on antigenic variation in African trypanosomes at the Issaquah Health Research Institute (the predecessor to Seattle Biomed and the Center for Infectious Disease Research) and Washington State University, he returned to Seattle Biomed in 1985 and has played a leading role in its subsequent development. Peter began an appointment as Assistant Professor in Pathobiology at the UW in 1993 and continues as Affiliate Professor in the Departments of Global Health and Biomedical Informatics & Medical Education, as well as a member of the Molecular and Cellular Biology program. For the last 15 years, Peter had been at the forefront of applying genomic technologies (such as expression profiling and proteomics) to increase understanding of molecular mechanisms underlying regulation of gene expression during Leishmania differentiation. About 10 years ago, he became actively involved in structural genomics, and is currently Director and PI of the Seattle Structural Genomics Center for Infectious Disease (SSGCID), which is funded under a contract from NIAID. In his spare time, Peter can be found enjoying his vacation cabin on Camano Island with his family, riding his bike, and educating the uninformed masses about the science and art of cricket.

Marilyn Parsons, PhD

Professor and Director of Training and Professional Development

Marilyn Parsons is Professor and Director of Training and Professional Development at the Center for Infectious Disease Research. She joined the Center in 1986, to study neglected diseases, such as African sleeping sickness and toxoplasmosis. Marilyn received her PhD in genetics from Stanford University and conducted postdoctoral research in the Department of Biochemistry at the University of Washington. She is an Affiliate Professor of Global Health at the University of Washington, and has participated in numerous workshops in India and East Africa aimed at training young scientists to conduct research in infectious diseases. When not working, Marilyn enjoys her family, her Bouvier des Flandres, and her volunteer work in aid of women in need.

Noah Sather, PhD

Assistant Professor

Noah Sather is an Assistant Professor at the Center for Infectious Disease Research. He joined the faculty in 2015 to advance the Center’s programs in vaccine development for HIV-1 and malaria. The Sather Laboratory utilizes state-of-the-art technology to develop novel vaccine immunogens and strategies. In addition, the Sather Laboratory is interested in deciphering the mechanisms of antibody mediated protective immunity by HIV or malaria vaccination. His lab actively collaborates with scientists from the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, the Oregon Health and Sciences University, University of Washington, and Vanderbilt University. Noah received his Ph.D. at Wayne State University in biological sciences, where his thesis work focused on a systems analysis to unravel the secrets of developmental biology. He joined the Center as a postdoctoral fellow in the laboratory of Leo Stamatatos, where he worked to understand how anti-HIV-1 antibodies develop. Outside of the lab, Noah enjoys hanging out with his kids, kayaking, snowboarding, and camping.

David Sherman, PhD


As a professor at the Center for Infectious Disease Research, David Sherman focuses on virulence, latency, and drug discovery for M. tuberculosis. Dr. Sherman earned his BA from UC Berkeley, his PhD in Biochemistry from Vanderbilt University, and he performed post-graduate work at the Rockefeller University and at Washington University in St. Louis. He joined the Center in 2007 and has helped lead the TB research efforts ever since. The Sherman Laboratory is internationally recognized, both for integrating approaches of systems biology into TB research and for its TB drug discovery work. On a personal level, David loves hiking, skate skiing, and is cooking. He often completes 60-minute gourmet recipes in under 40 minutes. Children and dogs love him. He is far too modest to take pleasure from the fact that you are reading about him right now.

Joe Smith, PhD


Joe Smith is a professor at the Center for Infectious Disease Research. He joined the Center in 2002 to advance the mission to combat malaria through scientific discovery. Dr. Smith received his PhD in Immunology from Washington University in St. Louis. He performed post-doctoral research in the Laboratory of Parasitic Diseases at the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, National Institutes of Health under the guidance of Dr. Louis H. Miller. Dr. Smith holds an affiliate faculty position in the Department of Global Health, University of Washington.

Don Sodora, PhD


Don Sodora is a professor at the Center for Infectious Disease Research. He joined in 2007 to advance the Center’s mission in the field of HIV research. The Sodora Laboratory investigates the ability of HIV to be transmitted from mothers to their children, as well as to understand how an HIV infection leads to immune dysfunction associated with AIDS. Recent studies have gone on to evaluate the interplay between co-infection of HIV and M.tuberculosis, which are currently both pandemics throughout the developing world. Don received his PhD in Microbiology from the University of Pennsylvania. He performed postdoctoral research at Stanford University and the Aaron Diamond AIDS Research Center in New York. Dr. Sodora has collaborators in Atlanta, Philadelphia, and Cape Town South Africa. He is dedicated to the training of undergraduate and graduate students, including serving as Chairman of the Admissions Committee for the Pathobiology Graduate Program at the University of Washington where he is an affiliate professor. Outside of the lab, Don enjoys spending time with his friends and family, hiking, taking photographs, and camping.

Kevin Urdahl, MD, PhD

Associate Professor

Kevin Urdahl is an associate professor at the Center for Infectious Disease Research. His research seeks to understand the barriers that prevent the immune system from eradicating the bacteria that causes tuberculosis and to develop strategies to overcome these barriers for an effective vaccine. Kevin received his MD and PhD in microbiology from the University of Minnesota. He completed a pediatrics residency and an infectious disease fellowship at Seattle Children’s Hospital, and his postdoctoral work in Immunology was at the University of Washington. He started his career as a primary investigator in the Department of Pediatrics at the University of Washington before joining the Center in 2010. Dr. Urdahl continues to be an attending physician in Pediatric Infectious Diseases at Seattle Children’s Hospital and is an affiliate associate professor of immunology, pediatrics, and global health at the University of Washington. In his spare time, Kevin enjoys spending time with his family, especially outdoors.

Dan Zak, PhD

Assistant Professor

Dan Zak is assistant professor at the Center for Infectious Disease Research. After joining the Center in 2011, he has developed a research program aimed at deciphering immune networks that determine whether a person exposed to a pathogen will become sick, or whether a person given a vaccine will become protected. He does this through an interdisciplinary approach involving mathematical analysis, wet bench experimentation, and many close domestic and international collaborations. Dr. Zak received his PhD in chemical engineering from the University of Delaware, under the joint mentorship of Babatunde Ogunnanike, a systems engineer, and James Schwaber, a systems neuroscientist. Dr. Zak transitioned to infectious disease and immunology during his postdoctoral fellowship with Alan Aderem at the Institute for Systems Biology and Center for Infectious Disease Research. Outside of the lab, Dr. Zak enjoys Indian classical music, traveling the world, and grappling with invasive English ivy.


Candice Chin

Director, Financial Planning & Analysis

Candice Chin is Director of Financial Planning & Analysis at the Center for Infectious Disease Research, where she leads the finance and research administration teams. Candice received her BA in economics and music from the University of Washington, and dual MBA/MA Arts Administration from the University of Cincinnati. With over 15 years of financial management experience across government, nonprofit, and business sectors, Candice has worked in the public transportation, private philanthropy, arts, retail, and fin-tech startup arenas. Outside of the office, she enjoys performing as a classical violinist, reading, and running.

Toni Hatzakis

Director of Human Resources

Toni Hatzakis is Director of Human Resources at the Center for Infectious Disease Research and had joined the Center in 2009. Toni received her BA in psychology/sociology and then went on to complete her MS in Labor and Industrial Relations in New York. She has worked in human resources for over 20 years in various industries, including Wall Street, pharmaceutical, retail, and consumer products. Outside of work, Toni is kept busy with two teenage daughters, ages 16 and 17, following them on soccer fields and volleyball courts. In addition, she volunteers for an organization called Athletes for Kids and enjoys sailing and kayaking with her husband.

Ron Hood

Director of Information Technology

Ron Hood is the Center’s Director of Information Technology, a role he has held since December of 2014. He has over twenty years of experience supporting biomedical research with innovative technology leadership. He has a Master’s degree in electrical engineering from the University of Colorado at Boulder and is a member of the Society for Information Management (SIM) and the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE), and a founding member of the Biomedical Research Institutions Information Technology Exchange (BRIITE). In his off-hours, he and his wife enjoy bicycle touring, hiking, tree farming, and playing with their grandkids.

Kent Irwin

Senior Director, Operations & Facilities

Kent Irwin offers more than 20 years of experience in facility operations, repair, and maintenance, including an extensive background in a biomedical laboratory environment. He oversees all facilities, environmental health and safety operations at the Center for Infectious Disease Research. Prior to joining the Center in 1995, Kent served in the U.S. Navy as a submarine officer. In his free time, he enjoys golf and boating.

Tracie VonGoedert

Director of Research Integrity and Compliance

Tracie Mankowski-VonGoedert is the Director of Research Integrity and Compliance at the Center for Infectious Disease Research. As such, Tracie oversees programs aimed to ensure effective compliance with all laws, regulations and rules meant to ensure the responsible and ethical conduct of scientific research. Areas of focus include programs associated with conduct of clinical trials, manufacture of investigational products, human subjects research and animal care and use. Prior to joining the Center, Tracie spent over 15 years in the biotech industry, focusing on regulation and execution of Phase 1 through Phase 3 clinical trials. Tracie also played a pivotal role in obtaining marketing approval for the first biologic product to be approved under FDA’s Fast Track Designation.


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