Ben has 15 years of experience in finance and business operations and is currently part of the central supply chain team at Amazon Retail. He holds a BS is Electrical Engineering and Economics from Duke University and an MBA from Kellogg School of Management. He is an avid hiker and skier, a die-hard Duke basketball fan, and a constant explorer. He previously held a board position (ex officio) with Polaris Charter Academy in Chicago.
Megan's professional experience includes health care marketing and non-profit management. She began her career as a Teach for America corps member and then spent several years working with community-based programs at Neighborhood Centers. She left her most recent role with Baxter Healthcare to focus full-time on RPL Association. She holds a BS in Biomedical Engineering from Duke University and an MBA from Kellogg School of Management. Megan is a life-long learner, a travel fanatic, a bookworm, and a chocolate aficionado. She blogs about her personal experience of recurrent miscarriage at MisbehavingUterus.com.
Serena has more than 11 years of experience partnering with stakeholders around the globe on healthcare marketing initiatives, education and security programming, as well as foreign policy. She began her career at the University of Chicago, followed by 6 years at the U.S. Department of State. Serena pursued an MBA to transition into global healthcare; she has been with Baxter International for the last three and a half years. She holds a BA in Spanish and International Studies from Washington University in St. Louis, an MA in Latin American Studies from the University of Chicago, and an MBA from the Booth School of Business. Serena has served on the board of the American Cancer Society and is currently a member of the Global Glimpse Regional Leadership Council.
Prior to becoming a Mom in 2015, Kate worked for The George Washington University Museum and The Textile Museum in Washington, DC. Her experience ranges from corporate and individual fundraising to grant writing for non profits. She is a former Arts Commissioner for the City of Alexandria, V.A. and has volunteered extensively for arts and culture non profits on the east and west coasts. Kate holds an MA in Arts Management from George Mason University and a BA in Studio Art from The University of Maryland. Kate enjoys running, peppermint ice cream, and spending time with her husband and their rainbow baby.
Cynthia is a successful entrepreneur who has created, invested in and advised a variety of innovative start-up companies in the biotechnology, diagnostics and medical device industries. Cynthia has over 25 years of research and leadership experience and is currently Chairman of the inflammation and fibrosis therapeutics company, Moerae Matrix, which she co-founded. She is also fulfilling the Executive Chairman role for Moerae spin-off VasoPrep Surgical, a medical device entity focused on improving outcomes in vascular graft surgeries.
Prior to creating her own companies and advising others, Cynthia was a partner in the venture incubator Nascent Enterprises, with 26 companies created to date and 12 exit transactions. She also runs her own consulting practice, Cynapse Consulting, advising major pharmaceutical, biotechnology, medical device and diagnostics company clients. She has been Senior Vice President at Publicis Groupe, responsible for business development and brand strategy for biopharmaceutical clients.
Cynthia received her PhD in Neuroscience from Yale University (Neurogen Fellow), where she made several discoveries that were subsequently outlicensed for use in research and drug development. She conducted post-doctoral research at Rockefeller University as a Revson Fellow. Life sciences represents Cynthia’s second career. Previously, she was a classical musician trained at The Juilliard School (keyboard performance), and she still takes every opportunity possible to play the compositions of Debussy, Liszt, Franck and Bach. In addition to her PhD, Cynthia has a BS in Psychology from New York University.
Amy is a public health professor at Thomas Jefferson University in Philadelphia. Her work (including this article on Instagram Users’ Experiences of Miscarriage) has spanned maternal and child health, women’s health, and sexual and reproductive health topics in several countries around the world. She holds a BFA from the New School, an MA in Health Education from Columbia University, and a DrPH in Community Health and Prevention from the Drexel University Dornsife School of Public Health. She also completed a postdoctoral fellowship in communication at the Center for Media & Social Impact at American University. Amy lives in New Jersey with her husband and daughter, who was born after multiple unexplained miscarriages.
Dr. Ryniec is a fertility specialist at CCRM Boston. She received her undergraduate degree from Wake Forest University and her medical degree from Georgetown University School of Medicine. During her residency for obstetrics and gynecology at Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical School, Dr. Ryniec received the Excellence in Female Pelvic Medicine Award and recognition for Outstanding Accomplishment in Women’s Health. After her residency, she completed her fellowship in Reproductive Endocrinology and Infertility at the University of Vermont Medical Center. Dr. Ryniec has presented her research at prestigious medical conferences, such as the American Society for Reproductive Medicine Annual Meeting, and has authored several publications for notable peer-reviewed journals. She lives in Boston with her husband and two children.
Melanie has more than seven years of experience working in social services. She spent three years working as a substance abuse counselor prior to finishing graduate school. She holds a BA in Human Development from Washington State University and a MS in Social Work from the University of Louisville. Melanie currently works as a hospital social worker for CHI Franciscan Health. She enjoys boating, all-things Disney, and spending time with her husband and daughter, born via a gestational surrogate.
Dr. Mak is an Assistant Professor at Dell Medical School, UT Austin and is a board-certified Reproductive Endocrinologist with a special interest in Recurrent Pregnancy Loss. She is the director of the Early Pregnancy Loss program at UT Health Austin. She completed medical school at the United Medical and Dental Schools of Guy’s and St. Thomas Hospitals (London, UK) and completed her Obstetrics and Gynecology residency at Addenbrooke’s Hospital (Cambridge, UK) and St. Mary’s Hospital (London, UK). After residency, she received her PhD in Genetics from Imperial College (London, UK). She then completed a second residency in Obstetrics and Gynecology at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center (Los Angeles) and completed her fellowship in Reproductive Endocrinology and Infertility at the University of Pennsylvania. She was recruited to be an NIH Research Scholar at Yale School of Medicine focusing her research on reproductive biology and discovered a protein which is important in early embryo development. She also served as the Director of the Yale Recurrent Pregnancy Loss program.
Currently, Dr. Mak’s research focuses on uncovering new causes for unexplained recurrent pregnancy loss. Her publications have appeared in high impact journals and she has received numerous awards on both the national and international platform. Dr. Mak’s work has been supported by several grants through agencies such as NIH, ASRM, and the Medical Research Council.
Dr. Mak educates patients and their families about pregnancy loss through her blog MiscarriageMD.
Dr. McQueen is a Reproductive Endocrinologist at the University of Chicago and a board-certified OB/GYN. She received her bachelor’s degree from the University of California, Berkeley, medical degree from the University of California, Irvine and a master’s in clinical research from the University of California, San Diego. She then completed her residency in Obstetrics and Gynecology at the University of Chicago and fellowship in Reproductive Endocrinology and Infertility at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine. Dr. McQueen received additional subspecialty training in RPL by completing a fellowship in Recurrent Pregnancy Loss at the University of Illinois.
Dr. McQueen’s research focuses on risk factors for Recurrent Pregnancy Loss. She is interested in the relationship between chronic endometritis and miscarriage. In addition, she is investigating male factors related to RPL. Dr. McQueen has presented her research both nationally and internationally and published numerous peer reviewed journal articles and book chapters. She was awarded the prize paper from the ASRM Early Pregnancy Special Interest Group in both 2019 and 2020.
Clinically, Dr. McQueen sees both infertility and RPL patients and enjoys teaching medical students and residents.
Dr. Sefton is a Scientific Program Manager for Training and Research Development at Stanford University within the ChEM-H Institute and Innovative Medicines Accelerator (IMA). The ChEM-H Institute aims to improve human health by understanding life on the molecular level, while the Innovative Medicines Accelerator aims to overcome obstacles in drug discovery and development. In the research development realm, Dr. Sefton manages requests for proposals and seed grant opportunities that support innovative research conducted in human subjects. Additionally, Dr. Sefton supports clinical study operations for seed grant recipients.
Prior to Stanford, Dr. Sefton managed the Master of Science in Reproductive Science and Medicine Program at Northwestern University from 2016-2019. From 2013-2016, Dr. Sefton was program manager for an NCATS/DARPA funded project that resulted in a microphysiologic model of the female human reproductive tract. Dr. Sefton received her PhD in Life and Biomedical Sciences from Northwestern University in 2013. She studied cell signaling in uterine leiomyoma in the lab of Julie Kim, PhD.
It's National Infertility Awareness Week (NIAW) and we're raising awareness for the 1-2% of couples for who experience recurrent pregnancy loss.
Our goal is to raise $5,000 during NIAW to support our research grant program and we'd love your help.