our team

In addition to our authors, reviewers, and editors, our support team makes sure Drug Hunter runs smoothly on a day-to-day basis. They also work behind the scenes on great new site features and content for the drug discovery community. We appreciate their contributions and a few members who have been with us for some time are featured below. You may encounter some of them while giving feedback on the site or while participating in events.

We’re always looking for help with everything from graphic design to literature research – if you like the idea of helping drug discovery scientists and professionals and are interested in a paid position, reach out here!

Melissa  Client Services Leader

Melissa is the Client Services Leader for Drug Hunter, coordinating and managing work across client-centered departments including account management, customer success, and sales. She graduated from Northwestern University and earned her Bachelor’s degree in Communication as a Theatre Major, with a minor in Business Institutions and a Leadership Certificate.  While pursuing an acting career, she was introduced to Production Management, Stage Management, and House Management opportunities that propelled her into the world of business operations. After leaving the theatre, Melissa worked in Project Management, Household Management, and Direct Sales.  Melissa lives in New York City and enjoys running full and half marathons, reading, baking, and spending time with loved ones–especially the children in her life.

September  Operations Manager

September is an authentic, self-aware leader with over three decades of experience in a variety of industries including biotech, healthcare, the nonprofit sector, dental and chiropractic care, petroleum marketing, and biomedical research.

She spent over 15 years at Genentech partnering with scientists, executives, training & development colleagues, and the administrative community.

During her professional journey, she honed her expertise in a multitude of functional areas involving event, meeting, and project management; human resources and recruiting; finance, people management, and business operations.

September is intrinsically collaborative and inclusive, and she thrives in cultivating meaningful relationships. She’s an ace at connecting people and resources and provides masterful high-touch customer service. 

Raised in Oregon on a small farm, September lived in the San Francisco Bay Area for 35 years. She now calls Southern Oregon home and treasures the time spent with her parents.

She thrives on spending time with her daughter, exploring nature with her dog Ozzy, gardening, traveling, and listening to an eclectic genre of music, novels, and podcasts. She also has a love for crafting and dabbles in sewing, needlepoint, wood-burning projects, knitting, and jewelry making. Several years ago, she started making one-of-a-kind greeting cards to share with family and friends.

Erika – Principal Scientist and Associate Editor

Erika is a Principal Scientist and Associate Editor in Drug Discovery for Drug Hunter, helping with scientific research and editorial tasks. Prior to joining Drug Hunter, she spent 5 years working in the pharmaceutical industry at AbbVie as both a process and drug discovery chemist, gaining technical expertise spanning metric ton-scale API manufacturing to ng-scale on-DNA chemistry (for DELs). A drug discovery devotee, cross-functional collaboration enthusiast and passionate ED&I champion, she was trained as a synthetic chemist and dabbled in molecular biology. Prior to the start of her professional career, Erika was a Marie Curie IFF & NIBR Postdoctoral Research Fellow at the University of Basel (2013-2016), she earned her Ph.D. in Organic Chemistry from Northwestern University in 2012, and her B.S. in Biochemistry from Ohio Northern University in 2007. She currently lives in the Chicagoland area with her husband (also a chemist!) and three crazy boys. When not keeping up with them, she enjoys doing anything outdoors and baking.

Jason – Sr. Web Developer and Engineering Manager

Jason is a full-time web developer for Drug Hunter. He helps to manage web development at Drug Hunter and contributes to new features and improvements for the website. Jason previously was a Senior Web Developer at Walmart.com and managed a team, built applications and created customer experiences live on the Walmart homepage. He graduated with a B.A. in Economics from the University of Michigan. Jason currently lives in Michigan. When he is not digging deep into technical challenges, he loves the gym, sports, and playing fetch with a ball of terrier energy named Winston.

Jennie – Sr. Marketing and Communications Manager

Jennie is the Marketing and Communications Manager for Drug Hunter – developing and executing marketing campaigns and managing corporate communications. She graduated from Northwestern University with a degree in Biological Sciences. She previously worked with the Global Marketing Solutions team at Facebook and most recently worked at IDEAYA Biosciences in roles of increasing responsibility culminating in a position as Associate of Investor Relations.

Jennie enjoys hiking, gardening, and spending time with her kids.

Dani – Sr. Visual Designer

Dani is the Senior Visual Designer for Drug Hunter, helping with graphic design and art direction. She graduated from the University of Central Florida with a Bachelor’s in Spanish Literature and Art History and from Valencia College with an A.S. in Graphic Technology & Interactive Design. 

She is an uber-creative graphic & web designer with over 7 years of experience spanning the entire visual spectrum, delivering human-centered print and digital experiences that convey the brand’s story to connect with audiences in new meaningful ways. Throughout her career she’s worked with all types of visual design, partnering with companies in multiple industries like Disney, AdventHealth, and Fusion. In 2017, she co-founded an independent creative agency with the goal of building a lean, mean creativity machine. As lead designer, she gained valuable insight and experience into the full product life-cycle including project planning, brainstorming and conception, team management, and customer relations. 

Dani resides in Orlando, Florida and loves reading, thrifting, traveling and discovering new cultures, going to art museums, and hiking.

Jessa – Administrative Assistant 

Jessa is our team’s amazing administrative assistant, helping coordinate site operations, maintaining the website, and reaching out to community members. Jes graduated magna cum laude with a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology and is helping with Drug Hunter while working on her Master’s thesis. Jessa is also a senior recruitment specialist in an engineering company. We don’t know how she juggles everything, but she’s never let us down!

Dennis – CEO and Editor-in-Chief

Dennis is the CEO of Drug Hunter parent company Drug Hunter Inc., and Editor-in-Chief of Drug Hunter. Dennis started Drug Hunter because he felt science-focused drug discovery professionals were underserved by existing media outlets. He started his career as a drug discovery scientist at a now publicly-listed biotech startup (RAPT), where he contributed to the discovery of a phase II drug candidate for cancer immunotherapy. He later joined Genentech, a subsidiary of Roche, the largest pharmaceutical company in the world by revenue. He has been a chemistry and project team leader for several projects leading to patented and published chemical matter. He earned his PhD in Chemistry from Stanford University, MPhil by Research from the University of Cambridge on a Churchill Scholarship, and a dual BA/MS from Northwestern University as a Goldwater Scholar.

We thank all other contributors to Drug Hunter past and present.

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