Directors


President
Peyton Bohnsack
Department of Psychiatry

Peyton is a NRSA (F32) Postdoctoral Research Fellow in the Department of Psychiatry and Center for Alcohol Research on Epigenetics studying the epigenetic underpinnings of adolescent and adult alcohol dependence. He graduated from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill with a PhD in Pharmacology. Previous to serving as a President of the UIC PDA, he served as Vice President and as a member of the Career Development Symposium Committee.  He is excited to serve this year as the 2018-2019 UIC PDA President and looks forward to meeting and interacting with the greater UIC postdoctoral community.

Vice President
Eleonora Gatta
Department of Psychiatry
egatta@uic.edu

Eleonora joined UIC about three years ago as a postdoc in the Psychiatry Department and has been actively involved in the PDA for the last year as Director of Communications. She also was Chair of the Fundraising committee for the second annual career development symposium in 2018. She is very enthusiastic to serve as Vice President of the PDA for the next academic year. She has seen first-hand the collaborative nature of the association, and is very happy to be an active member to voice postdocs needs at UIC and put her efforts in making UIC a better place for postdocs.

Director of Communications
Anabel Miguelez Fernandez
Department of Anatomy and Cell Biology
anabelmf@uic.edu

Anabel is a Research Biologist who obtained a M.Sc. and a Ph.D. in Biological Sciences from the University of Buenos Aires and has been involved in basic neuroscience research for the past ten years. She is currently a postdoc in UIC's Department of Anatomy and Cell Biology investigating how specific neuronal circuits in the brain contribute to the maturation of the prefrontal cortex during adolescence.  Since joining UIC last year, she has been an executive member of the PDA and – more recently – she participated as Director of the Communications Committee of the 2018 Career Development Symposium.

Director of Programming
Christopher Solis-Ocampo
Department ofPhysiology and Biophysics
csolisoc@uic.edu

Chris is the Director of Event Programming at the UIC Postdoctoral association. He worked as the chair of the 2018 UIC Career Development Symposium. His postdoctoral research focuses on understating how cardiac muscle cells sense mechanical cues and how aberrant signaling leads to diseases like hypertrophy cardiomyopathies and atrophy. He also organizes the Heart Research Journal Club as part of the UIC Center for Cardiovascular Research. He completed his PhD in biochemistry at South Dakota State University in 2016 where his work focused on understating the mechanisms of activation of cardiac thin filaments. During his tenure at SDSU he actively participated in student organizations like the International Relations Council and the Latin American Student Association. He completed his bachelor’s degree in industrial chemistry at the National University of Costa Rica. 

Newsletter Editor
Matt Wood
Department of Microbiology and Immunology
mattwood@uic.edu

Matt joined UIC during summer 2018 in the department of microbiology and immunology. This is his first postdoctoral research associate position after studying for his PhD at Newcastle University. His main research interest is cellular immunology during inflammation and he aims to develop his research career in immunology by gaining further experience and broadening his academic network. He is excited to be in the position of newsletter editor to help achieve the goals of the PDA.

Director of External Relations
Sobhika Agarwala
Department of Pharmacology
sobhikaa@uic.edu

Sobhika has been a Postdoctoral researcher at UIC since February 2017. She completed her graduate studies at the University of Freiburg in Germany. Prior to that, she received her master’s and bachelor’s degrees from UK and India, respectively. She is currently working on hematopoietic stem cells and how they interact with the surrounding niche cells so that they can be maintained lifelong.   She became involved with PDA when she volunteered for the Career Development Symposium in 2017. She has been an active member of the PDA Executive Board since last year and helped in putting together the last PDA newsletter. She was also a member of the committee that organized this year’s CDS (2018). Her involvement with the PDA has been very valuable for her personal development and this year she wants to take up a bigger challenge by running for the position of Director of External Relations. Although she is relatively new to this, she is confident that she will be able to represent UIC PDA at events organized by Chicago-area Postdoc offices/associations to further expand our network.