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Scientific Advisory Council

Dr. Jodi A. Flaws

Jodi A. Flaws is a Professor in Comparative Biosciences at the University of Illinois-Urbana/Champaign. She received a B.S. in Biology from St. Xavier University, a M.S. in Biology from Loyola University of Chicago, and a Ph.D. in Physiology from the University of Arizona. Following completion of the Ph.D. degree, Dr. Flaws performed postdoctoral research at Johns Hopkins University and the University of Maryland. Following postdoctoral training, Dr. Flaws accepted an Assistant Professor position at the University of Maryland, where she subsequently was promoted to Associate Professor. In 2006, Dr. Flaws accepted a position as Professor of Comparative Biosciences at the University of Illinois-Urbana/Champaign. Dr. Flaws’ research program is mainly focused on determining the mechanisms by which environmental chemicals affect the development and function of the ovary. Her research is funded by grants from the National Institutes of Health. She has published over 250 peer-reviewed papers that have involved extensive participation and authorship by graduate students, postdoctoral fellows, veterinary medical students, and undergraduate students. She is the recipient of the Department of Epidemiology and Preventive Medicine, University of Maryland Student Mentoring Award, the Patricia Sokolove Outstanding Mentor Award, the Dr. Gordon and Mrs. Helen Kruger Research Excellence Award, the Pfizer Animal Health Award for Research Excellence, the University Scholar Award, the Women in Toxicology Mentoring Award from the Society of Toxicology, and the Society for the Study of Reproduction Trainee Mentor Award.



Dr. Joseph Laakso

Joe Laakso is the Director, Science Policy at the Endocrine Society, a professional scientific and medical specialty association representing over 18,000 endocrinologists and endocrine scientists worldwide. Through his work with the Society, he helps the world’s leading experts in the field of endocrinology to advance policies that accelerate scientific discovery and ensure that endocrine science is reflected in legislation and regulatory decision making.

Dr. Laakso is passionate about the promise of research and the ability of governments to use scientific knowledge to advance effective science-based policies. He uses his blend of scientific and policy expertise to distill and communicate complicated scientific issues to policymakers and other audiences. His experience includes driving advocacy campaigns, facilitating and leading meetings with Members of Congress and their staff, drafting position statements and policy letters, producing congressional briefings, and working with the National Institutes of Health and other Federal Agencies on issues affection the biomedical research community. Recently, he has expanded the Endocrine Society’s advocacy footprint, driving efforts to influence regulatory policies in the European Union. He is a recognized leader among advocacy coalitions, serving as a Co-Chair of the Friends of the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences, and previously on the Executive Committee of the Friends of the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development. His background includes a B.S. in Biochemistry from the State University of New York, College at Geneseo, and a Ph.D. in Biochemistry and Molecular Biophysics from the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine. He completed a postdoctoral fellowship at the National Institutes of Health, and has volunteer experience focused on federal technology transfer policies.



Dr. Leonardo Trasande, MD, MPP

Dr. Leonardo Trasande, MD, MPP is an internationally renowned leader in children’s environmental health. His research focuses on identifying the role of environmental exposures in childhood obesity and cardiovascular risks, and documenting the economic costs for policy makers of failing to prevent diseases of environmental origin in children proactively. He is perhaps best known for a series of studies published in Lancet Diabetes and Endocrinology and the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism that document disease costs due to endocrine disrupting chemicals in the US and Europe of $340 billion and €163 billion annually, respectively.

He is a Jim G. Hendrick MD Professor, Director of the Division of Environmental Pediatrics and Vice Chair for Research in the Department of Pediatrics at NYU School of Medicine. He also serves on the faculty of the NYU Wagner School of Public Service and the NYU College of Global Public Health. He has served as a member of numerous scientific committees and expert panels, including: the American Academy of Pediatrics’ Executive Committee of the Council for Environmental Health; the Science and Technical Advisory Committee for the World Trade Center Health Program; the National Children’s Study Methodological Review Panel of the National Academy of Sciences; the United Nations Environment Programme Steering Committee on a Global Outlook for Chemicals; and the Board of Scientific Counselors for the National Center for Environmental Health at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).