Tonya Blowers is responsible for the overall management of the fellowships, awards and networking programmes as well as working with the OWSD executive board to develop strategic plans, fundraise and provide reports for OWSD members, donors and partners. Tonya has a PhD in Women and Gender from the University of Warwick, UK (one of only 30 students to receive a full scholarship from the university). She has a Masters in World Literatures in English from Marlboro College in the USA and a BSocSc in Sociology and Social Administration from Warwick. She has over twenty years experience as a teacher and writer, including as Lecturer in English Literature at Oxford Brookes University and at Royal Holloway College, UK, before running her own creative writing business in London. In Trieste since 2009, Tonya has developed science communication courses for PhD students in neuroscience, biology, physics and mathematics. Before joining OWSD in 2013, Tonya was staff writer at TWAS, editing the newsletter and website and contributing many articles on science in developing countries.
Leena Mungapen works on Administration, Membership, and Awards. In particular, Leena organizes all meetings and workshops related to the executive board and coordinates arrangements for the General Assembly and International Conference with the local organisers. Leena has worked at OWSD since it was founded in 1989 and has participated in the establishment, official inauguration and growth of OWSD for over twenty five years. She has seen OWSD grow from an organization with 400 members to a current membership of over 4000. Together with the first OWSD President, Lydia Makhubu, Leena developed and submitted the first postgraduate fellowship project proposal to Sida in 1997. She has a BA (Hons) in history and sociology from the University of Northampton, UK, as well as a postgraduate diploma in teaching English. From 1983 she taught at Brunel University in the UK and various international schools in Italy. In 1987 she moved into computer related business and international sales, travelling to several European countries.
Fellowships / Secretariat
Tanja Bole works on the postgraduate fellowship programme as well as on Administration, Membership, and Awards. Tanja has been with OWSD since May 2014 and has a degree in the economics of tourism. From 1992 to 1999 she worked in the international air transport sector as well as tourism. In 1999 she joined the International Centre for Science and High Technology in Trieste, Italy, where her duties included administration related to international fellowships and conference organization. Thirteen years of experience in the field have prepared Tanja very well for her work on fellowships for OWSD.
GenderInSITE Communications Officer
Erin Johnson joined OWSD in January 2015 and works on the GenderInSITE programme. Erin is a recent graduate of the Master's programme in international affairs at the New School in New York City, specialising in development, and has a degree in microbiology from the University of California, Los Angeles, USA. She has long been interested in the intersection of science and policy, particularly in the context of the developing world, and in the role of women in science and technology. She has written about these subjects as editor and community manager of ScienceBlogs.com and more recently has worked on international science policy and science diplomacy as a Foreign Affairs Officer in the Office of Science & Technology Cooperation at the U.S. Department of State.