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Mary Mullins Candidate Statement
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Professor and Vice Chair, Department of Cell and Developmental Biology

University of Pennsylvania Perelman School of Medicine (Philadelphia, Pennsylvania)



Acting interim vice president of the International Zebrafish Society (IZFS) from 2015 to the present.I have served the international zebrafish community in multiple ways throughout my career. I have served as course faculty at the Woods Hole Zebrafish course since its inception 20 years ago, directing the course for 4 years. I participated in this course to train the next generations of zebrafish researchers, with the goal of teaching the highest scientific standards and approaches to the field to keep science at its best in the zebrafish field. I served on the Zebrafish Nomenclature Committee since I was a postdoctoral fellow in Dr. Christiane Nüsslein-Volhard’s laboratory.  I served on the Zebrafish International Resource Center (ZIRC) External Advisory Board, since its inception in 2001 and until 2008. I have been an organizer of the International Zebrafish Development and Genetics Conference and the Strategic Conference of Zebrafish Investigators.  I additionally chaired multiple workshops/sessions at these conferences and the European Zebrafish Meeting, and I am on the current advisory board of the 10th European Zebrafish Meeting in Budapest, Hungary.  I am a founder of the IZFS, working together with others since 2013 to launch the society and acting as Vice President since 2014.  I have been an Associate Editor at PLOS Genetics since its inception in 2005, an Academic Editor at PLOS Biology since 2014, in addition to being on the editorial board of Zebrafish and other journals. Other international service includes, serving as an ad hoc reviewer of grants from Australia, Belgium, the European Union, France, Ireland, Israel, Japan, The Netherlands, Sweden, and the United Kingdom, and I served on a Wellcome Trust grant review panel. I served as the Secretary for the Society of Developmental Biology for 6 years. I served on the NIH DEV-2 grant review panel for 4 years, chairing it from 2014-2016, and an American Cancer Society grant review panel from 2004-2008.

Candidate Statement:

I have been an active member of the zebrafish community, since I first started working on zebrafish as a postdoctoral fellow in Dr. Christiane Nüsslein-Volhard’s lab. I have seen the field grow exponentially into the vibrant, exciting field it is today.  I am a founder of the IZFS, working together with others since 2013 to establish the society, write the bylaws, and acting as Vice President since 2014 of the interim IZFS board.  I, together with others, initiated the Chi-Bin Chien and Streisinger awards to recognize our outstanding zebrafish colleagues as postdoctral fellows/early independent investigators and established investigators who have made outstanding contributions to the field. I am dedicated to the success of IZFS, and uniting efforts around the world to train our scientists to perform the best science and maximize the impact of the zebrafish field. The technology of the 21st century has made the world closer than ever previously, with global connectivity just a click of the finger. Science is an international endeavor. We need to take advantage of this new era and maximize our impact by working together on common goals and exchanging ideas and information. I envision IZFS as a facilitator of global interactions, including supporting international scientist exchanges, organizing international zebrafish conferences, supporting travel awards to attend international conferences, working with other societies to establish a joint membership to the multiple zebrafish societies, mentoring of junior faculty and trainees, promoting zebrafish research, and establishing functioning IZFS working group committees to serve the global zebrafish community in these and other capacities. I am committed to fulfilling the goals of the IZFS as President elect and would be happy to serve the worldwide zebrafish community in this capacity.

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