Meet the current Society board

Executive Positions

Neil Carragher
Neil CarragherPresident

Neil Carragher is Professor of Drug Discovery at the University of Edinburgh, he graduated from the University of Aberdeen, Scotland UK in 1992 with a B.Sc Honours degree in the subject of “Cell and Immunobiology”.  He then took up a position within industry at the Yamanouchi Research Institute, Oxford, England UK where he also gained his PhD. He then held consecutive postdoctoral positions within the Department of Pathology, University of Washington, Seattle, USA and at the Beatson Institute for Cancer Research, Glasgow, Scotland UK. In 2004 Neil returned to the pharmaceutical industry as Principal Scientist with the Advanced Science and Technology Laboratory at AstraZeneca where he pioneered early multiparametric high-content phenotypic screening approaches. In 2010 he once again made the career switch from industry to academia and took up the post of Principal Investigator of Drug Discovery at the University of Edinburgh where he leads a research group and is currently co-director of the Edinburgh Cancer Discovery Unit and the Edinburgh Phenotypic Assay Centre. Primary research interests include advancing High-content analysis, phenotypic screening, Reverse Phase Protein Array technology, drug combinations and cancer drug discovery. Neil is also Chief Scientific Officer of the Phenomics Discovery initiative, a public-private consortia to advance phenotypic screening technologies and is a founding member of the European Cell Based Assay Interest group and global RPPA society.

Santosh Hariharan
Santosh HariharanSecretary

Santosh is currently working as a principal scientist at Pfizer where he is leading compound profiling efforts using cell painting assay. Santosh also has over 9 years of academic and industry experience in high content imaging and analysis field. His experience spans applying HCA in field of protein trafficking, oncology and fibrosis. While working as a scientist at Sanford-Burnham Medical Research Institute (SBMRI), he developed several high content screening assays and was in-charge of assisting biologist with their imaging and analysis protocols. He completed his PhD from University of Toronto in Canada. During his graduate work, he developed several image-analysis pipelines to computationally predict protein localization and quantify associated dynamics. He has also developed image analysis algorithms for fast analysis of 3D organoid images.

David L. Becker
David L. BeckerTreasurer

David is president of The Exeter Group, a life-sciences commercialization consultancy he founded in 1992. Seconded from Exeter, Dr. Becker recently served as Commercial Lead at ExpressCells, a genetic engineering start-up focused on producing custom cell lines for drug discovery, toxicology, and other biologic research. Prior to joining ExpressCells, he was managing director of Catalysis Partners, providing strategic solutions in drug development and commercialization to small life sciences companies. He is a board-certified internist.

Judi Wardwell-Swanson
Judi Wardwell-SwansonPast President

Judi is a Sr. Application Scientist at InSphero, Inc. where she assists Pharma, Biotech and Academic scientists integrate multicellular 3D models derived from human donor tissues into their drug discovery workflow. In addition to her role as InSphero’s Senior Application Scientist, she also serves as the lead scientist for their high content imaging strategy and technical advisor for their newly acquired imaging platform. Judi has been an active member of SBI2 for 5 years, serving as a Councilor on the Board of Directors from 2016-2019 and then as President-Elect and President.


Heba Sailem
University of Oxford

Heba is a Sir Henry Wellcome Research Fellow at the Institute of Biomedical Engineering at the University of Oxford. Before joining Oxford, she obtained her PhD at the Institute of Cancer Research in London with Prof Chris Bakal. She has extensive expertise in biomedical imaging and high throughput screening. Her focus is on developing machine learning approaches for automated and comprehensive analysis of large-scale genetic and drug screening datasets. For example, she developed KCML to predict gene functions based on phenotypic screens based on siRNA and CRISPR screens.  She has also developed several new image analysis and deep learning algorithms. These include a profiling of vascular network  morphology and single cell detection in wound healing assays.

She is an active member of the Early Career Section committee at the Royal Microscopy Society where she participated in setting up the committee and promoting ECR in microscopy career progression.

Don Apanovitch
Ferring Pharmaceuticals

Over the past 24 years Don has worked at multiple major pharmaceutical companies involved in early stage research with a focus on use and application of high content imaging (HCI) to drive and support target-based drug discovery programs. Most recently, as the director of Functional Genomics for the Pfizer Oncology Integrative Biotechnology (IBT) Group , he implemented HCI for target identification in early stage drug discovery, for in vitro and in situ functional and phenotypic characterization, as well as for providing technical and strategic guidance for new assays and innovative applications for all oncology programs moving towards IND filing. Additionally, he initiated application of both machine learning and AI technology to help validate and screen images for repurposing of HCI data for drug screening applications.

James Finley

Jim is a Principal Scientist in the Global Pathology and Investigative Toxicology group in Drug Safety R&D at Pfizer where he has been since 2000. Since receiving his BSc in Biology from Old Dominion University in 1986, he has worked 10 years in academic research (University of Virginia) and 20+ years in biopharma research (Pfizer, Wyeth) in a wide variety of research fields including neuroscience, deafness, cardiovascular/metabolic diseases, and oncology. The Investigative Tox group is a small team that does deep dive investigations into specific toxicity issues and builds safety de-risking models for programs across all therapeutic areas. As the imaging technical expert, he specializes in imaging-based assays for target identification/evaluation, drug activity/biodistribution/cell viability/toxicity. He has expertise in all phases of histotechnology (cell/tissue processing, sectioning, staining, immunohistochemistry); microscopy (fluorescence, confocal, live cell, multidimensional, 3D, HCS); in vitro assays (intracellular trafficking, endocytosis, angiogenesis, ROS, wound healing, NETosis, transfection, knockdown); and image analysis on cells or tissue using multiple platforms. His recent work has focused heavily on building 3D organoid and multi-physiological-system (MPS) models for safety and tox endpoints. He has been a member of SBI2 since 2015 and find it to be an invaluable resource for networking and keeping up with the latest HCS advances and technology.

Ty Voss
National Institutes of Health

Ty Voss was a founding member of the National Cancer Institute’s High-Throughput Imaging Facility and served there as head. He then worked as senior applications scientist for the PerkinElmer High-Content Analysis Instrumentation Sales Team. Currently, he assists researchers at the National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences with cell-based assay development and customized automated image analysis.

Sheila Kantesaria

Sheila is a Senior Scientist in the Primary Pharmacology Group at Pfizer in Groton, CT.  Her current work focuses on high content imaging assay development and screening in various cell-based and physiologically relevant systems.  She haS experience with spheroid, MPCC, and organ-on-a-chip models. Overall, she has 20 years of experience in cell-based and biochemical assay development spanning from early stages of drug discovery to developing assays for de-risking compound toxicity. She obtained my B.S.  from the Rochester Institute of Technology and Masters (BA in Biology) from Brown University

Nicholas M. Radio
Thermo Fisher Scientific

Nicholas (Nick) Radio is the Global Product Manager for High-Content Screening (HCS) at Thermo Fisher Scientific.  Nick holds a Ph.D. in Pharmacology-Toxicology and an MBA with focus in Strategic Management.  He has authored over 25 publications, including two invited book chapters on utilizing HCS for the study of neurotoxicity.  Nick has over 15 years of industry experience in HCS across roles in research and development, field applications, and technical product specialties.

Richard Kasprowicz

Richard is a Scientific Investigator in Imaging at GSK Stevenage UK, where he leads advanced analytic capabilities and development of high-content imaging screens for small molecules. He obtained his PhD in Immunology and Cell Biology at the University of York in 2014, going on to work as a Senior Applications Scientist at Phasefocus to explore the use of phase measurements derived from a novel label-free imaging technology. In 2018, he joined GSK and has developed numerous high-content assays across the drug discovery portfolio, focusing particularly on imaging assays that are now embedded within routine early safety screening. He has initiated application of AI/ML techniques across target identification and hit confirmation imaging programs and pursues further advancement of internal resources in the field with AI specialists. As a founding member of the GSK Imaging Hub, Richard continues to provide training in image analysis and assay design to scientists across the organization and champions inter-sector mobility via multiple academic collaborations.

Marguerite Vantangoli Policelli
Araceli Biosciences

Marguerite is an experienced research scientist, with a background in toxicity testing, model development and fluorescent imaging. She earned her PhD from Brown University, where she worked to develop and validate 3D culture models for phenotypic toxicity testing. She then moved into industry, supporting scientists across North America in high-content imaging and advanced fluorescent microscopy with a focus on the drug discovery space. In her current role as Director of Marketing at Araceli Biosciences, she is responsible for heading up the product, marketing, and scientific applications teams to drive the development and commercialization of new technologies to revolutionize drug discovery.

Jo Francis

Jo is a director in the Mechanistic Biology team at AstraZeneca, with over 25 years of pharmaceutical industry experience in small molecule and biologics research. She has expertise in the application of high-content biology to support early-stage drug discovery, implementing new innovations in advanced analytics and screening technologies through collaboration. Her previous roles included head of high-content imaging teams at GSK and Charles River.

Greg Way
University of Colorado

Greg is an assistant professor in the Center for Health Artificial Intelligence at the University of Colorado Anschutz medical campus. His lab studies cell morphology and is developing infrastructure, software, and approaches for the next generation of cell biology. His team develops approaches to extracting and benchmarking improved high-dimensional readouts of cell morphology that describe cell states. He serves on the board of the CytoData Society and on the Scientific Advisory Board of Infixion Biosciences. While on these boards, he founded the awesome-cytodata github page, has helped  execute two virtual international conferences, and is advising a startup company on effective machine learning strategies. He received his PhD in Genomics and Computational Biology from the University of Pennsylvania for his work studying applied machine learning in various genomic data, and performed a postdoc in Anne Carpenter's lab at the Broad Institute where he developed Python frameworks for analyzing fluorescent microscopy data and developed approaches to predicting cell health phenotypes. With Peter Horvath and Neil Carragher, he co-organized a session on single cells and high-content imaging at SBI2's 8th annual conference, High Content 2021.

Katherine Hales

Katherine is the group leader of the Cellular & High-Content Technology Center, a state-of-the art optical microscopy center within Pfizer WRDM at Cambridge, MA. In this role, she provides leadership and strategic oversight on the application of advanced optical microscopy and high-content imaging platforms in collaboration with researchers across therapeutic areas and computational scientists to address biological questions in pre-clinical studies. She received her PhD from the University of Central Florida and post-doctoral training at Emory University’s Winship Cancer Institute. She joined Carl Zeiss Microscopy, LLC as a 3D application specialist for 6 years prior to joining Pfizer in 2014.