About Us

One of Philadelphia’s favorite sons, Ben Franklin, was an abolitionist, a scientist, a politician, a writer, an inventor, and an advocate for women’s education. It’s not hard to imagine what Ben Franklin might think about our current societal disregard for facts and evidence. Taking this as inspiration, we see it as our vision to promote a fact-based public dialogue, particularly focusing on issues such as climate change, environmental regulation, education, and civil rights. We believe that scientific thinking can lead us to a better society through evidence-based public policy.

We are grateful for the women in our lives who have paved the way for us, and we want to follow their example and give back to our community. We’re focused on outreach activities for young women and girls in our city, particularly those in communities that have been underrepresented in the scientific establishment.

We’re also providing a community for women scientists to support each other. Being a woman in science isn’t easy, and we find great solidarity in each other. We've formed a sisterhood of women scientists, not simply a group of colleagues with shared interests.

We have reached out to our networks, which include women scientists from diverse circumstances and backgrounds including academia, government, and industry. In addition, we have gone outside our own networks and specialties to recruit women scientists from a variety of scientific disciplines. We’re still working on making our pod more inclusive by expanding our membership to serve women of color and the LGBTQ community. We value a diversity of voices and we want to be sure that we address issues that are outside our own white cis-gendered experience.

Left to right: Jillian, Lexi, and Tanya

Pod Leaders:

Tanya Dapkey works in the field of entomology for Dr. Daniel Janzen at the University of Pennsylvania on The Barcode of Life Initiative. Her project focuses on the lepidoptera of the ACG (Area de Conservacion en Guanacaste) in Costa Rica.Tanya is a very active member of her community, participating in local STEM events as a women scientist spreading the knowledge of entomology to children. Her goal is to help raise awareness of the beauty, importance and joy of insects. She is a nerd, mother, entomologist, and a partly cloudy Gonzo Patriot. Tanya currently lives with her husband of 11 years, her 8 year old son and 6 year old daughter.

Lexi Moore Crisp is an adjunct professor of biology at Delaware County Community College and a PhD candidate in The School of Life Sciences at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas. Her research is on the biomechanics of burrowing rodents (cool videos here: www.biologyunderground.com) and her scientific interests include biomechanics, vertebrate anatomy and physiology, functional morphology, and digging animals. Outside of biology, Lexi has a broad background with degrees in philosophy, psychology, and history and philosophy of science. Lexi and her husband, Larry, moved to Philadelphia from Las Vegas, Nevada in 2015. Lexi enjoys listening to podcasts, playing video games, and all cat-related media.

Jillian Roamer works as an analytical chemist, specializing in characterization of biologic and biosimilar pharmaceuticals by chromatographic and mass spectrometric techniques. Her work focuses on peptide mapping and sequencing, characterization of glycans, and post-translational modifications. Jillian’s involvement with 500 Women Scientists grew from her desire to create career development tools to make science inclusive. Outside of the lab, Jillian enjoys playing chamber music, reading, and an occasional TV binge. She and her husband relocated to the Philadelphia area from Reno, NV in 2013.