Dr. Woodruff is the Thomas J. Watkins Professor of Obstetrics & Gynecology and serves as Vice Chair of Research (OB/GYN) and Chief of the Division of Reproductive Research, Feinberg School of Medicine. She is also the Professor of Molecular Biosciences at the Weinberg College of Arts and Sciences at Northwestern University. She is an internationally recognized expert in ovarian biology and, in 2006, coined the term “oncofertility”— to describe the merging of two fields: oncology and fertility. Breakthroughs in ovarian tissue cryopreservation and in vitro follicle maturation are brightening the outlook for preserving fertility in young women with cancer and other diseases that are treated with life-saving but potent therapies. Based on promising science being done in her lab, Woodruff was awarded a prestigious Roadmap Grant from the NIH to advance her work in 2007. She now heads the Oncofertility Consortium, an interdisciplinary team of biomedical and social scientist experts across the country and serves as the Director of the Women's Health Research Institute.
Dr. Woodruff also is a skilled and committed educator, encouraging young women to pursue careers in the sciences, and has developed the Women's Health Science Program housed in the Institute. Her many awards include the U.S. Presidential Award for Excellence in Science Teaching (2011), Distinguised Woman in Medicine and Science from Northwestern (2009), Feinberg School's Faculty Mentor of the Year (2009), and Northwestern Distinguished Alumnae (2008). She was also honored nationally with awards from the American Women in Science (Innovator Award), and American Medical Womens Association (Gender Equity Award) in 2009. She is unwavering in her encouragement of students’ and colleagues’ professional growth, and she harnesses this same passion as she nurtures the growth of the Women’s Health Research Institute.
Sharon started her career as a medical technologist working in the special hematology departments at the University of Illinois and at the University of Chicago. After several years in the laboratory, her career shifted toward new program development. Her former positions include serving as the first executive director of the Y-ME National Breast Cancer Organization, the first deputy director of the Office of Women’s Health at the Illinois Department of Public Health, and one of seven co-founders of the National Breast Cancer Coalition in Washington, DC.
She established the Office of Special Population Initiatives at the Robert H. Lurie Comprehensive Cancer Center at Northwestern where she was responsible for getting the Center named as a Fertile Hope Center of Excellence. She currently serves at the Executive Director of the Women's Health Research Institute at the Feinberg School of Medicine where she is responsible for strategic planning and community engagement. She has received many awards for her women's advocacy work including the 2012 Medical Activist of the Year from the Women's Health Foundation. Ms. Green has an undergraduate degree in medical technology and a master’s degree in health administration.
Nadia manages the Illinois Women's Health Registry for the Institute. She has degrees in Biology, Kinesiology, and Psychology from the University of Colorado at Boulder, and a masters degree in Medical Science from Loyola University Chicago. She has worked with large epidemiological databases at DePaul University and at Children's Memorial Hospital. She has worked with the Oncofertility Consortium's educational programs at Northwestern University since 2009, and is part of the Women's Health Science Program (WHSP) education leadership team.
Lauren joined the team in 2011 and is Dr. Teresa Woodruff's assistant. She helps maintain the daily operations and schedules of her entire enterprise across the University including her research lab, departmental duties, faculty affairs and the Women's Health Research Institute and all its programs. Lauren works closely with Institute staff on educational and special event logistics, as well as the promotion and marketing of the Institute. She holds her BA from the University of Southern California, and an MPPA from Northwestern University.
Joseph is the Manager of Research Administrator for the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology as well as the Women’s Health Research Institute. He leads the overall finance, research, and administrative operations for both units including comprehensive pre- and post-award support, strategic planning, staff management, and facilitation of collaborations. Joseph holds a B.A. from the University of Iowa and an M.A. from the University of Chicago where he was exposed to the academic research environment. Diverting his career path from pursuing a faculty position, but maintaining an interest in the academic mission and pursuit of knowledge, Joseph began his career in research administration with the Division of Organ Transplantation. Through his experience at Northwestern, Joseph has managed awards and submitted applications for a variety of funding mechanisms (including federal series P, R, U, N, K, F, and T mechanisms as well as industry sponsored clinical trials and foundation support) and has been an active NURAP member since its conception.
Cathryn Smeyers, MAT, is the program manager for the Center for Reproductive Research at Northwestern. She works with the Women’s Health Research Institute as part of the Women's Health Science Program's leadership team. She graduated from the University of Michigan, before continuing on to earn her Master of Arts in Teaching from National-Louis University. In 2005, she taught an Ethical Issues in Science and Literature course at Highland Park High School and accepted a full time teaching position in 2006 at Riverside Brookfield High School, where she taught on an interdisciplinary team, with a focus on environmental science. In 2008, she made the move to Northwestern University, where she worked for two years in Life Sciences Financial Services and eventually moved to her current position and became a part of the Women's Health Science Program team. Cathryn possesses a passion for education and works hard to positively impact the lives of her students.
Kate is the Program Director of the Oncofertility Consortium based at Northwestern University's Feinberg School of Medicine. She integrates the research and clinical components of a national network of professionals dedicated to developing new fertility preservation options and reducing cancer patients’ barriers to care. Kate earned her BA in Neuroscience from Oberlin College (2001) and her Neuroscience PhD from the University of California, Davis (2009). During this time, she performed research and simultaneously developed a passion for communicating scientific advances to the public. Kate now manages the day-to-day operations of the Consortium including writing and facilitating grant proposals, administering external facing outreach, assisting internal researchers, and implementing special programs including the annual Oncofertility Conference. In these ways, Kate synergizes the aims of the Oncofertility Consortium with the Women’s Health Research Institute.