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Women’s History Month Panel Discussion

Eberly women talk mentoring

Old Main at the University Park campus during the fall semester.
Women's History Month Panel Discussion Video - Eberly Women Talk Mentorship

Dean Langkilde to moderate a panel of leading Eberly women alumni, faculty, and students and the role of mentoring.

March 16, 5:00 pm to 6:00 pm

Panelists include:

Barbara Dalton

Barbara Dalton.

Vice President, WWBD/Senior Managing Partner

Dalton, is Vice President, WWBD and Senior Managing Partner of Pfizer Ventures. She has been a member of Pfizer’s Worldwide Business Development Leadership Team for the past 11 years where she is responsible for leading Pfizer Ventures, managing the corporation’s private equity portfolio, as well as overseeing equity-based transactions that support business development. She currently has responsibility for Pfizer’s investments in, Artios Pharma, BioNTech, Complexa, Cydan, Imara, Ixchelsis, Morphic Therapeutic, Rhythm Pharmaceuticals, SpringWorks, System1, and Yumanity.

Dalton has spent over 30 years in the pharmaceutical industry, most of that time as a corporate venture capitalist. She joined SmithKline’s venture capital group, S.R. One, Limited in the early 1990s and was a founding member of EuclidSR Partners, a related private New York based venture capital firm, in 2000. She began her career as a research scientist, pursuing anti-inflammatory drug discovery research at SmithKline and French Research Laboratories. Dalton has been a leader in the corporate venture capital world, establishing the Corporate Venture Capital Group within the National Venture Capital Association. She has been on the board of the Alzheimer’s Disease Research Foundation, the NYBio organization and currently Chairs the Healthcare group of the Partnership Fund for New York City.

Dalton received a BS in General Science from Penn State and a PhD in Microbiology and Immunology from the Medical College of Pennsylvania, now the Drexel University College of Medicine.

Jane Charlton

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Professor Jane Charlton

Professor, Astronomy and Astrophysics

Charlton studies the formation and evolution of galaxies by charting the development and production of metals in the universe. Her research program has both theoretical components and observational components using data collected by ground-based observatories and NASA's Hubble Space Telescope. She learns about galaxies in different stages of development by studying the spectroscopic information picked up by the light emitted by quasars -- the most powerful type of galaxy nucleus -- as it travels across the universe. She also uses the spectra from quasars to study the physical conditions in the vicinity of the quasars and to learn how the central engines of quasars are fueled. In addition, Charlton surveys the interactions and mergers between dwarf galaxies to understand the mechanisms that are important to determine the size, shape, and origin of galaxies.

Charlton received the Annie Jump Cannon Special Commendation Honor from the American Astronomical Society in 1992. She was honored with the Penn State Faculty Associates Award for Teaching and Service in 1997.

Charlton earned a bachelor of science degree in chemistry and physics at Carnegie Mellon University in 1983. She earned a master's and a doctoral degree in astronomy and astrophysics at the University of Chicago in 1984 and 1987, respectively. Prior to joining the faculty at Penn State, Charlton was a research associate in astronomy at Cornell University from 1987 to 1989 and a research associate at the Steward Observatory of the University of Arizona from 1989 to 1992. She became assistant professor of astronomy and astrophysics at Penn State in 1992 and was promoted to associate professor in 1998 and to professor in 2003.

Denise Okafor

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Denise Okafor.

Assistant Professor BMB and Chemistry

Okafor investigates structural mechanisms of signaling and regulation in protein complexes. She uses MD simulations to determine how conformational dynamics of proteins are altered in different functional states. A broad range of biochemical and structural techniques are also employed. Combined, these allow us to carefully elucidate molecular mechanisms that govern the regulation of protein function. By understanding how proteins are regulated endogenously, Okafor aims to identify novel strategies to selectively modulate protein function.

Okafor received her B.S. in biomedical chemistry from Oral Roberts University. She earned an M.S. in chemistry and a Ph.D. in biochemistry at Georgia Institute of Technology. Her dissertation research was focused on the metallobiochemistry of RNA, investigating RNA folding and function as mediated by divalent cations magnesium and iron. Her postdoctoral research in the Ortlund lab at Emory University was focused on nuclear receptors, a family of ligand-regulated transcription factors. She used molecular dynamics simulations to investigate the mechanisms underlying ligand activation in nuclear receptors. As an NIH-IRACDA postdoctoral fellow, Denise also taught at Morehouse and Spelman colleges in Atlanta.

Emily Howerton

Biology PhD Program

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Emily Howerton.

Howerton holds the Barbara McClintok Science Achievement Graduate Scholarship in Biology. She is a graduate student in biology interested in various topics in theoretical ecology, including using competition models to analyze how species spread and coexist. Howerton earned bachelor’s degrees in mathematics and philosophy at the College of Wooster in Ohio.