Dr. Joan D. Barber
Joan D. Barber, Ph.D., retired as Vice Chancellor for Student Life from the North Carolina School of Science and Mathematics in 2014, having served 28 years at the school. She holds a doctorate in zoology/renal physiology from Howard University and completed her postdoctoral training in the Department of Nephrology at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, where she was the first Black postdoctoral fellow in the UNC School of Medicine. Her work contributed to the treatment of diseases of the kidney and kidney transplantation. In addition to research and teaching, she is an advocate for underrepresented minority students’ access to STEM-related fields and has built programs – both within and outside NCSSM – to enhance opportunities for students in STEM.
Dr. Christy L. Shaffer
Christy L. Shaffer, Ph.D., is a general partner at Hatteras Venture Partners with 30 years of experience in the life science industry. She joined Hatteras following a career as a clinical scientist, international project leader, Associate Director of Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine at Burroughs Wellcome Co., and President/CEO of Inspire Pharmaceuticals. She holds a doctorate in pharmacology from the University of Tennessee Health Science Center and completed her postdoctoral training at the Chicago Medical School and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. She has served on numerous nonprofit boards, including as chair of the NCSSM Foundation Board of Directors and Morehead Planetarium and Science Center Advisory Board.
Christina Hammock Koch ’97
Christina Hammock Koch ’97 is a NASA astronaut and served as flight engineer on the International Space Station from March 2019 to February 2020, setting a record for the longest single spaceflight by a woman with a total of 328 days in space, during which she conducted six spacewalks, including the first three all-women spacewalks. She graduated from the North Carolina School of Science and Mathematics and holds bachelor’s degrees in electrical engineering and physics and a master’s degree in electrical engineering from North Carolina State University. She serves on the NCSSM Board of Trustees.