Career Development

 The mission of the Career Development Committee (CDC) is to promote and develop career assistance for ABRF members through job fairs, counseling, workshops and a mentoring program.

ABRF launched an upgraded Mentoring platform early in 2021 to help new and experienced members connect to share information and ideas to support their professional development.

The new Mentoring system allows users to identify their interests, needs, and mentoring preferences and suggest potential ABRF Mentors. The Career Development Committee oversees the system to provide opportunities for participants to connect at ABRF national and regional meetings.

To stay informed about the new ABRF Mentoring Platform, contact the Career Development Committee.

Questions or interest in joining an ABRF committee? Contact us

Highlights of the Satellite Workshop on Mentoring at ABRF 2019:
This year’s Satellite Workshop on Mentoring, hosted by the ABRF Career Development Committee, aimed for a deep-dive into tactical skill development.   Bob Garvey, an internationally-recognized leader in the field from the UK, generously opened up key discussions about mentoring, stressing core values of humanism, taking people seriously, supporting and challenging, and mutual respect.  He stimulated the group throughout the day, with listening sessions requiring participants to listen and not talk for a full 5 minutes, and questioning-- not “leading”—having participants pose open-ended queries and truly wait for responses.  Bob demonstrated structured ways to do quick-focused-mentoring.  He illustrated through videos, and live with a participant partner, how to set ground rules for a mentoring partnership, have each party restate these ground rules verbally, and review these ground rules regularly throughout the partnership.  Bob stressed that no one should feel helpless in the world, either in one’s personal path or career, when there are bountiful ways to reach out and learn from others.  We had wonderful feedback from attendees. 

From Claudia Bispo (UCSF): "During this meeting I also had the opportunity to join the Satellite Workshop #2 (the Mentoring Way), which I found tremendously helpful, not only in learning about methods and skills on how to mentor, but particular interesting to me was learning how to be a good mentee and fully understand the benefits of a valuable mentoring partnership. I’m really hoping that next year I’ll have another opportunity to continue building-on these principles as well."

Questions? [email protected]

Core-Specific Job Families

Many U.S. Institutions have created job families specifically for directors, managers and staff working in core facilities. The rationale for specific job families is that these positions require advanced training and expertise in research technologies, above average interpersonal skills, business acumen and training, and are typically not soft-money positions. These job families have names like core scientist, core technician, core staff scientist, core research assistant, or core facility research professional. The following institutions have provided information with core-specific job families. If you would like to add your institution to the list, please send your information in a .pdf file to Phil Hockberger

    - Jackson Laboratories (86K)
    - Moffitt Cancer Center (12K)
    - Northwestern University (24K)
    - UCSF Gladstone Institute (33K)
    - University of Iowa (1,668K)
    - University of Kansas Medical Center (457K)
    - University of North Carolina Chapel Hill (161K)
    - University of Pennsylvania (172K)
    - Vanderbilt University Medical Center


1. Leadership and Management in Core Facilities

 Seventh Annual Course Offered by Northwestern University Kellogg School of Management

June 14-17, 2021 (To be virtually delivered)

Registration is NOW OPEN!

This executive education program is designed specifically for directors, managers and business administrators overseeing core facilities. The program was developed to enhance participants' ability to think strategically and address the unique challenges of operating a small business within a non-profit environment. Topics to be covered include defining your value proposition, pricing strategies, managerial accounting, marketing, team building & leadership, growth & sustainability, and innovation. In addition, participants work in teams to develop "applied learning projects" that enable them to implement something new into their core facility that they learned about in the course. Course registration is limited to the first 30 applicants, and registration is online. 

This usually 4-day course will be delivered by the same esteemed faculty from the Kellogg School who have made the course an exceptional experience for scientists and research administrators in previous years. This year the course will be delivered virtually and will include 8 half-day classes spread over three weeks. 

For more information about the course and to register, please go to:

2. Stowers Institute will be home to the first open registration EMBO "Laboratory Leadership for Group Leaders" course in North America, April 9-12, 2019.  Registration fee: $3200  (covers training and all course material, as well as breakfast, lunch, dinner and coffee breaks. Accommodations are not included.)
EMBO usually offers this course in Heidelberg, Germany, but beginning in 2019 group leaders from around the world will convene at the Stowers Institute to receive world-class EMBO leadership training.  EMBO, in partnership with consultancy teams, has designed this training specifically to meet the needs of researchers and others in academia. The course is intended for Group Leaders and is also open to Postdoctoral Associates who have secured faculty positions and are transitioning to independence.  Spanning 4 days, this course introduces key, yet simple, leadership concepts and provides hands-on experience in the form of role-play and discussion groups.
For more information, contact Karen Staehling ([email protected]) or Michelle Lewallen ([email protected]) or visit


As an ABRF member, you can use the FASEB Career resources: 
    - View Document 

ABRF Recommended Guidelines for Authorship on Manuscripts
    - View Document 

 ABRF Response to NAS Letter on "Next Generation of Researchers Initiative" (Sept. 6, 2017)

  - View Document

 NAS recommendations for biomedical workforce (2018)

  - View Document

Committee Membership

Laura Lewis-Tuffin - Mayo Clinic, Jacksonville, FL (Chair)
Heather Olson - Pacific Northwest National Laboratory
Anitha Chennat - U. Michigan Medical School
Luellen Fletcher - U. Pennsylvania
Kevin Gerrish - National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences
Lisa Macdowell - Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia
Sheenah Mische - NYU Langone School of Medicine
Claudius Mundoma - U. of Colorado at Boulder (EB Liaison)
Christine O'Connell - Moffitt Cancer Center
Shekhar Patil - Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai
Jianjun (J-J) Shen - MD Anderson Cancer Center
Sherry Thornton - Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center
Sequen Wang - Northwestern University 

Membership History

Jim G. Farmar ~ Merck ~ Member: 03/10 - 03/12
Gabriela Grigorean ~ ThermoFisher  ~ Chair: 03/10 - 05/15
Philip Hockberger ~ Northwestern University ~ Member: 01/12 - 5/19
Jack Simpson ~ US Pharmacopeia  ~ Ad hoc: 03/10 - 05/15
Paula B Turpen ~ University of Nebraska Medical Center  ~ Member & EB Liaison: 05/13 - 03/17