Dr. Bonnie Bertolaet, Executive Director
Prior to her role as Executive Director, Dr. Bertolaet served on the Board of Science Club for Girls from 2017 and served as its Chair in 2018. In that role, she was the major force behind the current strategic plan, the operational restructuring of SCFG, and a reinvigorated focus on development.
Bonnie has worked in biotech and with educational organizations in public and private schools in a variety of roles, including working in STEM education and supporting an equity-based educational program focused on raising awareness of physical and intellectual disabilities for children in K-6th grade.
Dr. Bertolaet received her B.A. from Amherst College and her Ph.D. from Harvard University and trained as an NIH post-doctoral fellow at the University of California San Diego and The Scripps Research Institute.
Cristina Ullmann, Program Director
Cristina has worked for both environmental non profits and science education organizations and is passionate about getting young girls interested in STEM. As the Program Director, Cristina is responsible for coordinating the clubs and managing the 35+ volunteers who teach our curriculum to the girls. Cristina has an M.S. in Conservation Biology and Sustainable Development.
Leadership and Staff
Hannah Weinstock, Program Manager
Hannah will be managing our program expansion to Boston and Somerville.
She has worked as a middle school STEM educator in Chelsea, MA where she created and taught classes in Computer Science, Technology and Engineering, 8th grade Physical Science, 5th grade General Science, and 6th grade Earth Science. Hannah received her B.A. in Psychology from Columbia University where she worked in a Social Psychology laboratory focused on identifying and mitigating stereotype threats among students of color.
Board of Directors
Tracy has held executive positions with Johnson and Johnson, Covidien, GE, Philips, Hologic, and Medtronic. She is presently on the board of Maxim Integrated (MXIM), volunteers at the Pine Street Inn for people experiencing homelessness in Boston and has served on the board of Newton Wellesley Hospital (Partners Healthcare). Tracy earned her dual BS in Mechanical Engineering and Engineering and Public Policy from Carnegie-Mellon University and a MS in Mechanical Engineering from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute.
Alejandra V. is the Chief Legal Officer and General Counsel to Momenta Pharmaceuticals, Inc., a public company focused on immune mediated rare disease drug development. Before Momenta, she was Vice President and General Counsel of Cerulean Pharma Inc. Prior to that, Ms. Carvajal worked at Millennium: The Takeda Oncology Company. Ms. Carvajal received a B.A. cum laude from Harvard University and a J.D. cum laude from The Georgetown University Law Center.
Karen has taken on the role of our new President and Board Chair. Karen is Senior Director of Clinical Biomarker Sciences at Pfizer where she has worked for over 25 years. Her parallel volunteer career demonstrates a passion for programs that promote the positive development of women and girls. Karen has served as President and Chairman of the Board for both the Massachusetts Chapter of the Association for Women in Science (2012-13) and the Junior League of Boston (2017-18). She is the recipient of JL Boston’s 2005 Active Volunteer Award, the 2006 Outstanding Manager Award, and the 2015 Sarah Lawrence Award for community service beyond the Junior League. Karen earned her PhD in Pharmacology at Boston University School of Medicine.
Sonal Patel — a former SCFG volunteer — is a dentist and practiced in the UK. She became involved with SCFG through her daughter who is a junior mentor. Sonal saw firsthand how the experience of volunteering at the clubs, sharing the love of science with younger students, and being around other girls, young women, and adult mentors who love STEM too, builds confidence in all involved. Sonal holds degrees from The University of Sheffield and is a Member of the Royal College of Surgeons of Glasgow.
Gretchen is passionate about energizing students to explore the awesome potential of the STEM/STEAM disciplines to transform their lives. She was senior leader at Engineering is Elementary at the Museum of Science and a K-12 educator. Gretchen was Associate Dean, College of Engineering, Boston University and founded three STEM educational programs, annually training and deploying 60 engineers to 3,400 secondary students nationwide. Prior experience includes roles at Duracell, Motorola and Pratt & Whitney Aircraft. She received a Ph.D. in Materials Engineering from Northwestern University.
Sharon is a Patent Attorney at Translate Bio, Inc., a clinical-stage mRNA therapeutics company in Lexington, Massachusetts. Prior to joining Translate Bio, Dr. Walker worked at Partners HealthCare Innovation, in private legal practice, and as a research scientist in the US and in Switzerland. Dr. Walker received a B.A. in Chemistry from Bowdoin College, a Ph.D. in Pharmaceutical Chemistry from The University of California, San Francisco, and a J.D. from Suffolk University Law School. Dr. Walker was born and raised in the South End of Boston. She is committed to championing for girls and women from underrepresented communities for inclusion in the STEM professions.
KAREN SONDERGELD WHITNEY
Karen Whitney is President of The Sonder Group and builds teams for life science companies developing breakthrough technologies such as Next Generation Sequencing and Synthetic Biology. Previously, she was VP, Business Development at the NewcoGen Group a Flagship Pioneering Fund and was part of the founding business development team at Celera Genomics, the first company to sequence the human genome. For over a decade, she held commercial leadership roles at PE Applied Biosystems (Now Thermo) and Pharmacia (Danaher). She earned a BA in Biology from Colby College.