Conference Speaker Bios

Advancing Graduate Leadership conference

2022 Conference Speakers Reflect the Diversity of the Field

To ensure that women and gender minorities feel represented at this event, APS’s Advancing Graduate Leadership (AGL) team has invited a diverse group of speakers to present at the conference, August 4-5, 2022, in Washington, DC. These speakers come from many different backgrounds and bring a wealth of expertise in physics, advocacy, human resources, social work, and more. We are grateful to them for bringing their invaluable knowledge and experiences to this event.

Ilke Arslan

Ilke Arslan

Ilke Arslan is the director of the Center for Nanoscale Materials and the division director of the nanoscience and technology division at Argonne National Laboratory. Arslan joined Argonne in 2017 as group leader for electron and x-ray microscopy. From 2011 to 2017, she worked as a senior scientist at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory. From 2008 to 2017, she held a faculty position in the Chemical Engineering and Materials Science department at the University of California, Davis, and from 2006 to 2008, she was a Truman Fellow at Sandia National Laboratories. Arslan has a doctorate in physics from the University of California, Davis, and has been honored with the Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers. She is an Oppenheimer Fellow from the Oppenheimer Science and Energy Leadership Program and the current chair of the Oppenheimer Leadership Network.

Bri Hart

Bri Hart

Bri Hart (she/her) is a diversity program manager for the American Physical Society. In this role, she organizes, develops, and improves programs that support equity, diversity, and inclusion in the physics community, including the National Mentoring Community (NMC) and Supporting Teachers to Encourage the Pursuit of Undergraduate Physics (STEP UP). Hart’s background includes managing programs to create space for historically marginalized folks within the higher education and nonprofit sectors, including women and gender minority students, first generation college students, and students who have been ethnically and racially minoritized. Hart identifies as a Black feminist and is committed utilizing an intersectional lens to center the voices and experiences of Black women in her work.

Frances Houle photo

Frances Houle

Frances Houle, PhD, is the deputy director of the Liquid Sunlight Alliance and senior scientist in the Chemical Sciences and Molecular Biophysics and Integrated Bioimaging Divisions at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. Her current research interests are in coupled reaction-transport processes in solar energy conversion systems and their components. She received her BA from the University of California at Irvine and her PhD from the California Institute of Technology, both in chemistry. She is a Fellow of the American Physical Society. She has worked on ethics in science since 2002 and is currently the past chair of the APS Ethics Committee.

Michelle Lollie

Michelle Lollie

Michelle Lollie is a recent graduate of Louisiana State University, where she earned a PhD in physics. Her research involved the investigation of high-dimensional quantum communication using twisted light and engineered quantum statistics. She’s an advocate for equity across science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) subjects, particularly in the field of physics, and is a steering committee member of American Physical Society's Inclusion, Diversity, and Equity Alliance. She holds multiple degrees, including a bachelor’s degree in business administration/finance from Clark Atlanta University, a bachelor’s degree in physics from the Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology, and a master’s degree in physics from Indiana University.

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Callie Pruett

Callie Pruett is the senior advisor to the Ruben Ramirez for Congress campaign in the Texas Fifteenth Congressional District. She is the executive director of Appalachians for Appalachia, an independent, research-focused advocacy nonprofit. She is the co-host of the wildly successful podcast Appodlachia. Finally, she is the founder and principal of Politicary, her political consultancy. She is the former senior strategist for grassroots advocacy for the American Physical Society (APS). She is also the former lead strategist and manager of the Physicists Coalition for Nuclear Threat Reduction in partnership with Princeton University and the Carnegie Corporation.

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Meg Rodriguez

Meg Rodriguez leads the Career Pathways office at Berkeley Lab. In this role, she oversees the lab’s postdoctoral program, Berkeley Lab Graduate Bridge Fellowship, Early Career Enrichment Program, Annual Research SLAM, scientist and engineer appointments, and the annual director’s awards process. She is passionate about her work in the Career Pathways Office and assisting early-career scientists in career and professional development. Meg earned her bachelor's degree from Sacramento State University in business administration, with an emphasis in human resources, and is currently pursuing a masters in education at the University of San Francisco, with an emphasis on higher education.

S Simmons photo

S Simmons

S Simmons, or Dr. S, as he is affectionately called, is a Black, queer, trans*masculine educator, facilitator, healer, and dope ass human. He is originally from Chicago Heights, Illinois, and is the eldest of three. Thinking he would become a psychologist, he received bachelor’s and master’s degrees in psychology from Iowa State University. However, along the way he discovered a program that would allow him to utilize his psych skills while working with students from pre-college to graduate school (and beyond), and he was in love. He received his PhD in higher education from Loyola University Chicago. Throughout his career he has been committed and invested in underrepresented/underresourced communities including Black, Indigenous and people of color (BIPOC), first generation, and LGBTQIA+ people. After more than 15 years, he continues to work with individuals and organizations to explore themselves, their worlds, and their biases more honestly, and with a focus on action. His passion for development, leadership, and equity is evident when you meet him. At the root, he is committed to working alongside others towards healing and liberation.

Linda Strubbe photo

Linda Strubbe

Linda Strubbe, PhD, is a science education consultant, researcher, instructor, curriculum designer and instructor professional developer. Her PhD, from the University of California, Berkeley, and first postdoctoral fellowship, at the Canadian Institute for Theoretical Astrophysics, were studying massive black holes in the centers of galaxies. In 2015, she transitioned her career to science education. Linda's work focuses on university instructor professional development in international contexts, especially in Canada, West Africa, Central Asia, and the US. She is the co-founder and co-director of the Pan-African School for Emerging Astronomers and is currently supporting physics departments across four continents who are working to advance equity and inclusion in their universities.

Shannon Greco

Shannon Swilley Greco

Shannon Swilley Greco is the science education senior program leader at the Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory at Princeton University. She is a passionate science educator with nearly twenty years' experience in hands-on science and engineering education and engagement programs for informal science, kindergarten through twelfth grade students and teachers, and the general public. Swilley Greco holds a master of science in science education, and her work focuses on increasing participation of women and minorities in STEM. Shannon Swilley Greco is the past chair of the American Physical Society's Forum on Outreach and Engaging the Public, a career mentoring fellow, and Supporting Teachers to Encourage the Pursuit of Undergraduate Physics for Women (STEP UP) ambassador.

The activities within AGL are open to individuals who do not identify as cisgender men. We encourage participation of cisgender women, gender non-binary individuals, and transgender individuals.

Heising-Simons Foundation