Gordana Vunjak-Novakovic
Columbia University, USA

Gordana Vunjak-Novakovic is a bioengineer appointed University Professor, the highest academic rank at Columbia University reserved for only a few active professors out of 4,000, as the first engineer in the history of Columbia to receive this highest distinction. The focus of her lab is on engineering functional human tissues for use in regenerative medicine and patient-specific “organs-on-a-chip” for studies of disease. Their work is broadly published and highly cited. She has had over 150 trainees, many of which are now holding faculty and executive positions. With her students, she founded four biotech companies: epiBone (epibone.com), Tara (tarabiosystems.com), Xylyx (xylyxbio.com), and Immplacate (immplacatehealth.com).

Gordana is serving on the Council of the NIBIB, the HHMI Scientific Review Board, and on numerous editorial and scientific advisory boards. She was inducted into the Women in Technology International Hall of Fame, received the Clemson Award of the Biomaterials Society, Pritzker Award of the Biomedical Engineering Society, Shu Chien Award of the AIChE, Pierre Galletti award of the AIMBE, and was elected Fellow of several professional societies. She was decorated by the Order of Karadjordje Star – Serbia’s highest honor, and elected to the Academia Europaea, Serbian Academy of Arts and Sciences, the National Academy of Engineering, National Academy of Medicine, National Academy of Inventors, and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.