Strengthening Networks and Highlighting Black Excellence in Cancer Research and Medicine.
MEET THE TEAM
The Faces of Our Organization
BlackinCancer has developed so quickly in the last few months. We’re extremely proud of each and every member of the organising committee, not only for their scientific contributions to cancer research but also their ability to contribute their own unique experience and skills to our success. Find out more about some of our and co-founders and board of directors below.
Black in Cancer CEO
Sigourney is a third year graduate student at the University of Cambridge at the Cancer Research UK Cambridge Institute. She earned her Bachelors in Human Physiology from the University of Leeds and then went on to work for both Pfizer and AstraZeneca in Neuroscience and Oncology respectively. She is currently pursuing her PhD, with her research centring on developing novel models and therapeutics for paediatric brain tumours, more specifically supratentorial ependymoma. Outside of her research, Sigourney is passionate about scientific outreach and encouraging the next generation of Black students into STEM subjects.
DR. JULIA MORRIS
Director of Mentorship and Outreach UK
Dr. Julia Morris is a molecular biologist, mentor and communicator of science. She is proud of her Jamaican heritage and is passionate about sharing science with people of all ages. She obtained her undergraduate degree in ‘Cellular and Molecular Medicine with Study in Industry’ from the University of Bristol. She subsequently pursued her graduate studies at the University of Sheffield and was awarded her PhD in ‘Molecular Biology and Biotechnology’ in 2020.
Director of Mentorship and Outreach UK
Dr Rhea Harewood is a cancer epidemiologist and a Postdoctoral Scientist at the International Agency for Research in Cancer (IARC) in Lyon, France. She uses metabolomics data to identify aetiologic risk factors for colorectal cancer. Prior to this she worked as a Research Fellow at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine (LSHTM) investigating drivers of inequality in cancer survival. She was also the first Cancer Registrar of the Barbados National Registry for Chronic Non-Communicable Diseases, where she played a role in implementing the first cancer surveillance system in her home country of Barbados. Rhea has a PhD in epidemiology from Imperial College London, an MSc from LSHTM and an undergraduate degree in Chemistry from the University of the West Indies. She is heavily involved in postgraduate teaching and mentorship and is an Associate Fellow of the Higher Education Academy in the UK.
MAMADOU A. BAH
Director of Mentorship and Outreach US
Mamadou Bah is a Ph.D. candidate at Weill Cornell investigating metabolic-induced tumor immunosuppression to enhance therapeutic intervention. He did his undergraduate studies at New Jersey City University as a Biology major. During his undergraduate education, he did multiple summer internships including at the University of Michigan assessing the role of cell cyclin inhibitors on head and neck cancers. After undergrad, he was a research assistant at the Wistar Institute working on DNA based vaccines including COVID-19 before starting his Ph.D. He is passionate about giving back and is a mentor to multiple students as he seeks to do his part to increase diversity in the biomedical research field. Outside of school, Mamadou is an avid cyclist, runner, and foodie.
Stephanie Pierre is a third year MD/PhD student at the Tri-institutional MD-PhD Program, where she studies mechanisms for improving CAR T cell therapies at Memorial Sloan Kettering. She earned her bachelors in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology at the University of Georgia where she developed a passion for research through several diverse undergraduate research opportunities focused on poultry, fungi, and plant biology. She went on to complete the RADM Mishoe Fellowship Program at the NHLBI where she helped develop CAR T cell therapies for renal cell carcinoma. It was there that she found a passion for translational cancer research and decided to pursue physician scientist training. Stephanie has a passion for mentorship and tackling health care disparities. She has a strong drive to support underrepresented students interested in careers in the biomedical sciences in the hopes of diversifying the field for the benefit of our communities.
DR HENRY HENDERSON
Co-Director of Cancer Awareness
Dr. Henry J. Henderson is a cancer biologist and health-promotion advocate. He earned his PhD in Integrative Biosciences from Tuskegee University and is currently a Postdoctoral Research Fellow in the division of Hematology/Oncology at Vanderbilt University Medical Center. His research focuses on understanding non-small cell lung cancer and improving therapeutic strategies with a particular focus on mechanisms of sensitivity and resistance to agents used in clinical practice. As a dedicated champion of diversity in cancer research, he is additionally involved in strengthening scientific/medical literacy and increasing cancer awareness within the African-American community.
DR. TANIMOLA MARTINS
Co-Director of Cancer Awareness
Tanimola is a Lecturer and Post-doctoral Research Fellow at the University of Exeter Medical School. He has a background in Medical Rehabilitation and Public Health. His work stream aims to identify and quantify sociodemographic differences in primary care diagnosis of cancer, intending to formulate appropriate interventions to address such inequalities. Presently, Tanimola is collaborating with researchers from University College London and the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine to investigate ethnic inequities in diagnosis and outcomes of symptomatic cancer.
Director of Sponsorships
Chris Bourne is a 4th year PhD Candidate at Weill Cornell/Sloan-Kettering Institute. He received a BA in Biology and Spanish Literature from Swarthmore College. For his graduate work he studies cancer immunotherapy, aiming to use T cells to deliver drugs to tumors, and uncover novel immunotherapuetic targets. He is passionate about diversity in biomedical research and helps run programs and committees to improve recruitment, retention, and promotion of underrepresented students.
Dr ELSHADDAI WHITE
Associate Director of Sponsorships
Dr. Elshaddai White is an accomplished scientific research professional and leader with over 6 years of innovative research experience in the areas of oncology. Currently, Dr. White is a Medical Science Liaison (MSL) within the cancer diagnostics sector. Prior to becoming an MSL, he was a postdoctoral fellow in the Department of Radiation Oncology at NYU School of Medicine. His research primarily focused on metabolic vulnerabilities in pancreatic ductal adenocarcinomas. In 2021, he received his Ph.D. from Clark Atlanta University where he investigated tertiary prevention methods of metastasis with cannabinoids in breast and prostate tumors as well as investigating oxidant signaling mechanisms in response to nutrient deprivation in prostate cancer. Additionally, he holds a Master of Science degree and Bachelor of Science degree from Jacksonville State University and Louisiana State University, respectively. His career goal is to initiate cross collaborative strategic partnerships with key opinion leaders to develop innovative approaches to solving complex scientific challenges and to ultimately improve cancer health outcomes. Additionally, he hopes to train and develop future minority cancer scientists while putting forth his best efforts to eradicate this disease.
Director of Communications
Originally from the diamond nation of Botswana, Tumie is currently a postgraduate researcher at the Leicester Cancer Research Centre. She holds a Medical Genetics BSc from the University of Leicester and her research focusses on establishing novel diagnostic and prognostic RNA markers from exosomes in breast cancer. Aside from her research, she is passionate about outreach and cancer awareness within the black community.
Briana White is a native of South Florida with Jamaican heritage. She earned her Bachelor’s of Science degree in Public Relations with an outside concentration in Health Communications and Digital Design at the University of Florida. Briana has worked with Susan G. Komen for the Cure and ThinkPink Breast Cancer Foundation. Briana is currently a Media Relations Associate at Fractl a Digital Marketing/PR Agency.