American Friends of the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation

A Professional Partner of The

Alexander von Humboldt - Foundation

Health Care/Medicine

Health Care/Medicine

Erin Marie Furtak (2006-2007)
During her year as a German Chancellor Fellow, Erin held a dual research affiliation at the Max Planck Institute for Human Development in Berlin and at the Leibniz Institute for Science Education in Kiel (IPN). She conducted an experimental study of the impact of different teaching approaches on student learning at Max Planck, and co-authored a meta-analysis of the impact of inquiry-based science teaching at the IPN. Her interest in educational reform was piqued during her years as a high school science teacher in Colorado. Erin holds a doctorate from Stanford University in Curriculum and Teacher Education, and is currently Assistant Professor of Science Education at the University of Colorado at Boulder. Since returning to the US, Erin has continued to actively collaborate and publish with multiple researchers across Germany who she met during her Buka year, and is eager to foster similar relationships for future Humboldt scholars. (7/2/09)

Richard Gunderman (1992-93)
Richard Gunderman is Professor of Radiology, Pediatrics, Medical Education, Philosophy, Liberal Arts, and Philanthropy at Indiana University, where he also serves as Vice Chair of Radiology. He is also a Fellow of the Tobias Center for Leadership Excellence and serves on the Board of Governors of the Institute for Advanced Study and the Kinsey Institute. He received his AB Summa Cum Laude from Wabash College, MD and PhD (Committee on Social Thought) from the University of Chicago, and MPH from Indiana University. Richard spent his year as a German Chancellor Fellow at the University of Goettingen, where he worked on the project, “The Pursuit of Health.” He is a seven-time recipient of the Indiana University Trustees Teaching Award, and has also received the Wayne Booth Award, the Robert Shellhamer Award for the Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching, the School of Medicine Faculty Teaching Award, the Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Teaching, and the Herman Frederic Lieber Memorial All-University Award for Teaching Excellence. He is the author of over 230 scholarly articles and has published six books, including Achieving Excellence in Medical Education (Springer, 2006), We Make a Life by What We Give (Indiana University, 2008), and Leadership in Healthcare (Springer, 2009). He and his wife, Laura, have four children, the third of which was born during their year in Germany. (6/19/09)

Margaret Murray (1992-93)
Meg is the CEO of the Association for Community Affiliated Plans in Washington, DC, a trade association for Medicaid-focused health plans. As a German Chancellor Fellow, Meg studied the German health care system to look for lessons to aid in the reform of the U.S. system. (7/2/09)

Johnna Phillips (2005-06)
Johnna is the Head of Market Development for Fairtrade Labelling Organizations, Int’l e.V. in Bonn, Germany, a non-profit, multi-stakeholder association with 24 member organizations connecting producers, traders, businesses and consumers. Fairtrade sets international standards for products and traders, organizes support for producers around the world and promotes trade justice internationally. As a German Chancellor Fellow, she studied the fundraising, public awareness, and marketing practices of German health-related nonprofit organizations and assisted GuideStar Germany in successfully obtaining a grant for funding. (2/2/2010)

David Pilcher (1995-96)
David lives and practices Family and HIV medicine in Santa Cruz, California. Until 2005, he worked as a faculty physician at the Sutter Family Practice Residency Program in Sacramento and was on the clinical faculty at the University of California at Davis Medical Center. As a German Chancellor Fellow, he worked with the Federal Office of Education and Prevention and looked at HIV prevention projects in Germany. (12/2/09)

Andrea Stith (2007-08)
Andrea Stith is currently the Assistant Director for Interdisciplinary Education at the University of Colorado BioFrontiers Institute in Boulder, Colorado. Her primary role is to manage the Interdisciplinary Quantitative Biology (IQ Biology) PhD program. Prior to this, she was a research fellow at the Graduate School of Education of Shanghai Jiao Tong University (SJTU) in Shanghai, China. As a German Chancellor Fellow at Humboldt University Berlin and Ludwig Maximillians University in Munich, she compared national higher education systems and funding mechanisms for postdoctoral fellows and junior faculty in the sciences. Prior to her fellowship, Andrea was a program officer in the Office of Grants and Special Programs at the Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI) in Chevy Chase, Maryland. At HHMI, she managed grants award programs that support graduate education and research training. Before that, Dr. Stith was a science policy analyst with the Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology, where she worked on issues related to interdisciplinary research and the training of scientists. In 2002-2003 she was an AAAS/NSF Science and Technology Policy Fellow in the Office of Legislative Affairs at the National Science Foundation. She received her doctorate in Biophysics in 2001 from the University of Virginia and her bachelor’s degree in Physics from the University of Delaware in 1995. She has served as a councilor on the National Board of the Association for Women in Science, was a member of the 2015 class of Leadership Denver and currently serves on the American Friends Alumni Council. (7/8/15)

Edward Velasco (2006-07)
Edward is currently a Senior Scientist in the Division of Healthcare-associated Infections (HAI), Antimicrobial Resistance and Consumption at the Robert Koch Institute in Berlin. Dr. Velasco provides scientific advising and technical support for HAI, including outbreak management, as well as research on clinical and social risk factors for antimicrobial resistance. Before this he worked at the Open Socitey Foundation Public Health Program in London, evaluating projects in Azerbaijan, Bosnia, Kirgyzstan and Romania. As a German Chancellor Fellow, he was a guest at the Social Science Research Centre Berlin working in the public health program. Dr. Velasco is a Bay Area native from Milpitas, CA, and has a Master’s in public health from Harvard and a Bachelor’s from the University of California, Berkeley. He finished his Ph.D. in epidemiology and medical research in 2012 at Charité University Hospital Berlin.

Mike Zou (2014-15)
With his long-standing interest in Germany and its pharmaceutical industry, Zou plans to conduct research on recent German-based clinical trials on targeted therapeutics in oncology. He will investigate the trial design, clinical execution, and respective outcomes of pre-clinically promising new molecular entities against disease-causing oncogenes in cancer patients. In the process, he hopes to identify parameters that carry predictive value to the outcome of trial success. He will further compare the operational and regulatory differences between trials conducted in the U.S. and Europe, which have been reflected in the approval of certain new agents in one region but not the other. Drawing on experiences and lessons learned from both successful and failed trials, his research aims to improve the quality and cost-effectiveness of future clinical trials, especially for a new generation of targeted therapeutics.