Teresa Norberg-King, SETAC North America Vice President
When you know and recognize your current leaders, it is easier to reach out to them and unlock future leadership opportunities for yourself. Four members were elected to the SETAC North America Board of Directors, with terms from November 2017 through November 2020. Our tripartite balance was facilitated with adding one member from academia, Markus Hecker (Canada), and three members from the business sector, Lisa Ortego (North Carolina), Sue Robinson (Washington) and Eric Van Genderen (California). All board members are volunteers, and they are working hard for you to make SETAC the place you aspire it to be as a member.
Lisa Ortego is a Senior Principal Scientist in Bayer’s Environmental Toxicology and Risk Assessment Team in Research Triangle Park, North Carolina. Lisa received her B.S. from Louisiana State University in environmental health and her Ph.D. in pharmacology and toxicology from the University of Mississippi. She has been a diplomat of the American Board of Toxicology since 2001. Lisa has more than 20 years of experience as an ecotoxicologist in the private sector, starting with Rhone-Poulenc. She left the pesticide/chemicals sector to work for the Nickel Producers Environmental Research Association (NiPERA) before joining Bayer in 2003. Lisa is very active outside of Bayer, serving as Technical Chair of the Endocrine Policy Forum (industry task force) for four years. Currently, she is the co-chair of CropLife America’s Environmental Science and Policy Steering Group and serves on CropLife International’s Endocrine Issue Team.
Lisa has been a member of SETAC since the late 1980s, and during this time she has served SETAC in various capacities. Lisa participates in student development and early career mentoring activities via SETAC. She has previously served on the SETAC World Council Finance Committee and as president of the Carolinas Regional Chapter, and she is chairing a chapter committee. More recently, Lisa has served on the organizing committees of the SETAC North America Focused Topic Meeting as well as Pellston Workshop® on endocrine disrupting chemicals. In addition to the Board of Directors, she also serves on the SETAC Scientific Integrity Subcommittee and the SETAC North America Certification ad hoc Committee.
Weekends, you’ll find Lisa and her husband, Blake, either on their bicycles or with their family. They both enjoy road cycling and mountain biking, and they like to travel with their bikes. They love spending time with their two young granddaughters, Sophie and Addy, and their new grandson, Jamie. Feel free to reach out to Lisa. She’d be happy to brainstorm with you!
Markus Hecker is a professor and Canada Research Chair at the University of Saskatchewan where he studies the impacts of chemicals released into the environment and the risks they pose to aquatic ecosystems and human health. He is considered an expert in ecotoxicogenomics, hazard characterization of contaminants in native fishes and amphibians, and development of alternatives to live animal testing. Markus’ passion for ecotoxicology stems from his first-hand experiences of environmental pollution in Cold War-era Germany, when he grew up on the banks of the river Rhine in the early 1970s, which at the time was little more than an open sewer system. Markus always had a fascination for water, and one of his child-time heroes was Jacques Cousteau, who explored the uncharted depths of the ocean—discovering a new world. These mystical images of pristine and diverse ecosystems and the stark contrast to the harsh reality that our water is very susceptible to human abuses piqued his curiosity to understand the delicate balance between our modern chemical society and its impacts on the environment.
Markus has been an active member of SETAC starting with his time as a Ph.D. student in Germany. His participation at the SETAC Europe meeting in Leipzig in 1999 was the first step in a successful global career as an environmental scientist. SETAC has played a vital role for Markus, especially as a student and young researcher, and equally important, as a professional networking and outreach platform throughout his career. Since his initial involvement in SETAC, he has actively engaged in or lead several science initiatives through the Society and served in many functions, including as member and chair of the SETAC North America Science Committee and, most recently, by joining the Board of Directors. When not in the office, at meetings or in the field, Markus enjoys spending his time in, on or around water and, more recently, on its frozen form when he picked up hockey after his move to Canada. You can reach out to Markus with your volunteering questions and suggestions.
Sue Robinson is an Environmental Toxicologist with 34 years of experience, specializing in evaluating the fate, effects and impact of chemicals and physical stressors on ecological and human health. Since joining INTERA Incorporated, Sue has continued her work on the fate and effects of metals associated with mining and refining operation impacts (sediment, surface water, soil, biota) has been a focus of hers over the past 22 years. Her work includes legacy and operating site impacts to the environment (predominantly private industry clients), regulatory compliance strategies, ecological and human health toxicology and conducting environmental risk assessments. Sue’s technical expertise includes designing, managing and participating in field and laboratory studies designed to assess chemical- and site-specific toxicity, mobility and bioavailability, given the key roles of these factors in the assessment of risk and in developing site-specific remediation levels. Over the course of her career, Sue has managed high-profile risk and impact-based investigations and assessments in both upland and aquatic environments to support regulatory compliance and remedial strategy development.
Sue is an active member of SETAC, the Society of Toxicology and the American Mining Association. She has served on the SETAC North America Science Committee, the Orlando and Minneapolis Program Committees, and now the Board of Directors. Sue is an avid naturalist, chef and foodie, and she loves to hike and read in her spare time. Reach out to Sue to relay your ideas and find out how you can volunteer.
Eric Van Genderen is the Associate Director of Environment & Sustainability for the International Zinc Association and provides oversight of their environmental research portfolio, global regulatory affairs and sustainable development programs. His role includes oversight of the global environmental research portfolio, regulatory affairs and sustainability programs related to recycling and life cycle assessment. His graduate work at Clemson University focused on assessing the fate and effects of metals in natural waters, which dove-tailed into his early risk assessment work in consultancy. Eric’s international opportunities have exposed him to cultures, traditions and values in more than 20 countries, contributing to a connected world for identifying social and environmental solutions.
Eric joined SETAC as a student member in 1999, and since then, he has been a member and served on the board of three regional chapters – the Pacific Northwest Chapter, Carolinas Regional Chapter and Northern California Regional Chapter. Eric most recently co-chaired the SETAC North America 2018 Program Committee and has been a volunteer member of the SETAC North America Development Committee, a steering committee member for Focus Topic Meetings and technical workshops. Eric supports the broader SETAC mission through Global Affiliate representation and serving on the steering committee of the Global Metals Interest Group. Feel free to email Eric if you have any needs or concerns.
The SETAC North America Board of Directors is very pleased with the talents and energy that these three individuals bring to SETAC, and we are very excited for their ideas to help continue to grow and foster SETAC on behalf of our members.
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