The ISSCR Scientific Director, Heather Rooke, has accepted a position at Harvard University, and will be leaving the ISSCR on 12 September.
Rooke, who joined the ISSCR in 2005, will become the Executive Director of the Harvard Department of Stem Cell and Regenerative Biology, the academic home of 20 faculty and over 350 stem cell scientists conducting research on Harvard’s Cambridge and Longwood campuses, Massachusetts General Hospital, Children’s Hospital Boston, and more.
During her time at the ISSCR, Rooke led the organization’s scientific and educational programs, including coordinating the scientific program at the annual meeting and international symposia, and development of auxiliary programming for the meetings. She was instrumental in development of the public education website, A Closer Look at Stem Cells. She also led the effort to establish Stem Cell Reports, the ISSCR open-access journal launched in 2013.
Rooke played key roles in communications and policy efforts throughout her tenure at the ISSCR, overseeing outreach to the media and public audiences. She was the lead administrator on three sets of Guidelines documents, and the ISSCR representative to the National Academies of Sciences Forum on Regenerative Medicine.
“Heather Rooke’s excellent scientific knowledge and training has been key to her successful leadership of new ISSCR initiatives and oversight of scientific programming,” said ISSCR CEO Nancy Witty. “She brings keen insights and attention to detail, along with a generous spirit and consistent dedication to excellence,” she said. “Heather has been an influential voice for the stem cell community, and will continue to influence the field through her new position at Harvard. We wish her well and will continue to work with her in this new role,” Witty said. “I want to thank Heather for being such a terrific colleague for the past twelve years,” she added.