Executive Advisory Committee
The Executive Advisory Committee meets annually to guide development of IGSB’s future goals and helps set the research direction of the Institute. The Committee members reflect the Institute’s cross-disciplinary focus in basic and clinical research at the University of Chicago and Argonne National Laboratory.
The current IGSB Executive Advisory Committee includes:
John M. Cunningham, MD, is the Chief, Section of Pediatric Hematology/ Oncology at the University of Chicago. He is an internationally known expert in the treatment and research of childhood cancers and blood diseases. He has particular expertise in treating hemoglobinopathies, which are disorders that affect red blood cells, such as sickle cell disease and thalassemia. He is a recognized leader in the field of pediatric stem cell transplantation and has developed novel uses for this life-saving treatment.
Dr. Ian Foster, PhD, is Director of the Computation Institute, a joint institute of the University of Chicago and Argonne National Laboratory. He is also an Argonne Senior Scientist and Distinguished Fellow, and the Arthur Holly Compton Distinguished Service Professor of Computer Science. Ian received a BSc (Hons I) degree from the University of Canterbury, New Zealand, and a PhD from Imperial College, United Kingdom, both in computer science. His research deals with distributed, parallel, and data-intensive computing technologies, and innovative applications of those technologies to scientific problems in such domains as climate change and biomedicine. Methods and software developed under his leadership underpin many large national and international cyberinfrastructures. Dr. Foster’s honors include the Lovelace Medal of the British Computer Society and the Gordon Bell Prize for high-performance supercomputing.
Dr. Conrad Gilliam, PhD, is the Dean for Research and Graduate Education at the University of Chicago Biological Sciences Division (BSD). Dr. Gilliam completed his postdoctoral training in human genetics at the University of London before joining the faculty at Harvard Medical School in 1983. He moved to Columbia University in 1986, where he was a Professor in the Departments of Psychiatry and Genetics & Development and was named Director of the Columbia Genome Center in 2000. He came to the University of Chicago in 2004 as chair of human genetics. He is an authority on the identification and characterization of heritable mutations that affect the nervous system.
Dr. Michelle Le Beau, PhD, is the Director of the Comprehensive Cancer Center and the Cancer Cytogenetics Laboratory at the University of Chicago. For nearly a decade, Dr. Le Beau served as the head of cytogenetic studies of lymphoma for the Children’s Cancer Group (now COG), and was a member of the Cytogenetics Review Committee for Cancer and Leukemia Group B (CALGB). She also served as a member of the Board of Directors of the American College of Medical Genetics. She was a member of the NIH Pathology B Study Section (1996-2001) and CAMP Study Section (2001-2006), served as the Chair of this Study Section from 2004-2006, and was a member of the NCI Cancer Centers Review Parent Committee (2005-2009). Dr. Le Beau is an international leader in cancer cytogenetics and genetics, and is recognized for her work in identifying recurring cytogenetic abnormalities, in defining the clinical, morphological, and cytogenetic subsets of leukemia, in identifying the genetic pathways that lead to myeloid leukemias, and on the application of fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) technology for clinical diagnostics and gene mapping.
Dr. Neil Shubin, PhD, is the Robert R. Bensley Professor, Organismal Biology and Anatomy at the University of Chicago. He is a paleontologist, evolutionary biologist, and science writer. Dr. Shubin is best know in the popular media as being one of three principal investigators who in 2004 discovered the fossil tetrapodomorph fish Tiktaalik roseae. Dr. Shubin’s research interests center around trying to better understand how and why new anatomical features and faunas arose throughout evolutionary history. His studies focus primarily on two critical time periods during the history of our planet, the Devonian and the Triassic.
Dr. Rick Stevens, PhD, is the Associate Laboratory Director for Computing, Environment, and Life Sciences at Argonne National Laboratory. He heads Argonne’s advanced computing initiative targeting the development of exascale computing technology and systems and computational biology. He is also a Professor of computer science at the University of Chicago and is a Senior Fellow of the University of Chicago & Argonne National Laboratory Computation Institute (CI), a multidisciplinary institute aimed at connecting computing to all areas of inquiry at the University and the Laboratory. In addition, he is the co-Director of the Argonne Futures Lab, a research group he started in 1994 to investigate problems in large-scale scientific visualization and advanced collaboration environments. His group in the Futures Lab has developed the widely deployed Access Grid collaboration system.
Professor Tirrell received a BS degree in Chemical Engineering from Northwestern University and a PhD in Polymer Science and Engineering from the University of Massachusettes. He began his academic career as an Assistant Professor in the Department of Chemical and Materials Engineering at the University of Minnesota where he later served as Head of the Department. He then moved to the University of California at Santa Barbara where he served as Dean of Engineering. After serving as Dean for 10 years, Professor Tirrell moved to the University of California at Berkeley where he served as Chair for the Department of Bioengineering. In 2011 he accepted the position of Founding Pritzker Director of the Institute for Molecular Engineering.
Everett Vokes, MD, is the John E. Ultmann Professor of Medicine and Radiation Oncology at the University of Chicago. He is an internationally renowned expert in the treatment of head and neck cancer. Born in New York City, Dr. Vokes was educated in West Germany, receiving his medical degree from the University of Bonn Medical School. He served his residency in internal medicine at Ravenswood Hospital Medical Center in Chicago and at the University of Southern California in Los Angeles. He arrived at the University of Chicago as a hematology/oncology fellow in 1983 and was promoted to professor in 1995. For eleven years he served as chief of the Section of Hematology/Oncology, before his appointment as chair of the Department of Medicine in March 2009. In October 2009, Dr. Vokes was named interim dean of the Division of Biological Sciences and the Pritzker School of Medicine and interim vice president for medical affairs at the University of Chicago. He served in these roles for one year.