WEST's 9th Annual "Giving Back" Awards Ceremony

Meet the extraordinary and inspiring women and men being honored and hear the stories of how they have made a profound impact on society. The honorees are role models who balance job and personal responsibilities while making a difference in their community. Join us to congratulate them, be inspired, network, and support the career advancement of women in the enterprise of science and technology! 

We received a large number of applications and will recognize many amazing women and men. We will also honor WEST volunteers and supporters whose dedication and outreach efforts have helped us reach our strategic goals.

Appetizers, wine, and dessert will be served.

Whether shopping for your family, friends, home, or office, there is something for everyone at this year's Silent Auction Fundraiser – a plethora of wonderful and interesting items and services for sale from generous donors around the region! Proceeds will benefit our WEST mission, programs, and operations – to provide high quality and affordable educational content and development opportunities (workshops/events) for all women in STEM careers.


Download the event flyer here



Unsung Heroines Doing Extraordinary Things

  Heather Multaupt, Senior Engineering Director at Brooks Automation

  Elaine Webb, Senior Materials Manager, Engineering Change at Applied Materials

Honorable Mentions:

  Lauren Laidlaw, Senior Director, Marketing and Communications at Safety Partners

  Jessica Pearlman, Project Manager, Engineering R&D at Teradyne


Making a Difference in Meaningful Ways

  Connie Jeffery, Associate Professor at University of Illinois

  Camara Samuel, Senior Engineer at Procter and Gamble


Guys Who Get It

  Terry McGuire, Founding Partner at Polaris Partners

  Richard Murray, CEO at Jounce Therapeutics


Making a Difference in the Community

  Lindsay Kuhn, PhD Candidate at Brown University

  Zoe Sobin, Senior Software Engineer at HubSpot


Volunteer Awardees

  Elise Huang  

  Anna Li

  Anne Thessen


For more details on the honorees and their volunteer contributions, please scroll down. 


Date and Time:

January 25, 2016
6:00 - 9:00 PM

Evening’s Schedule

6:00-7:00  Registration, Networking, Appetizers, Wine, Silent Auction

7:00-7:10  Welcome, Acknowledgement of Sponsors, Overview of the Evening

7:10-7:50  Award Presentation    

7:50-8:10  WEST’s 2016 Accomplishments and Plans for 2017

8:10-8:30  Awards Presentation for Volunteers

8:30-8:45  Dessert, Silent Auction Winners Announced

8:45-9:00  Networking


IBM, 75 Binney Street, 1st Floor Auditorium, Cambridge, MA

$55 for Members, $75 for non-members

$700 for 10 tickets, $1,000 for 15 tickets and $1,300 for 20 tickets

Cancellation Policy:
All programs are non-refundable.

Thank you for your interest.  This event has sold out as we have reached the maximum allowed for the venue.


To Register


Become a sponsor and contribute to a great cause.  For more information, email [email protected], or call 857-600-2598.   



Thank You to Our Event Sponsors


Diamond Level Sponsor



Silver Level Sponsors 









We invite you to patronize those businesses who have so graciously donated to our event.


  • Intro package including an evaluation and three training sessions from InnerCity Weightlifting
  • Two 5 class packs for spin and/or bootcamp classes from Turnstyle Cycle
  • Family Portrait by world renowned Bradford with stay at the 5 Diamond, 5 Star Eau Hotel & Resort (formerly the Ritz-Carlton) in Palm Beach, FL from Bradford Renaissance Portraits
  • $25 Gift certificate from Tasca Restaurant
  • $150 Gift certificate for food and beverages from Jules Catering
  • Regular membership from the Brattle Theatre
  • Weekend room night with two breakfasts from Crowne Plaza Newton
  • Gift card from Flatbread Company, Somerville 
  • Voucher redeemable for two tickets from Blue Man Group Boston
  • Two weeks of food from Blue Apron
  • Small ice cream cake from J.P. Licks
  • 5 passes for one session of Laser Tag or the Adrenaline Zone from LaserCraze 
  • 30 day membership from Community Boating
  • Two in person coaching meetings for Executive Communications, Presentation, Public Speaking, Media Skills from Tom Kennedy
  • Two tickets from STOMP in New York
  • 4 passes from Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum
  • Two $25 gift certificates from Redbones
  • $100 gift card from Tuscan Kitchen
  • 5 class pack from Pure Barre Wellesley


Pay for a silent auction item here


More details on honorees:


Elise Huang is a process development engineer cross-trained in both small molecule and biologics in pharmaceutical industry. She previously worked at Alcon by Novartis, Bristol Myers Squibb, and  Merrimack Pharmaceuticals. Outside of WEST, she is also an active volunteer in Healthcare Business Women Association, MGH Post-doc Association, Monte-Jade Science & Technology Association, and Boston Taiwanese Biotechnology Association. She enjoys exchanging ideas with others, and has helped organize symposiums and mentoring programs to connect like-minded people. She obtained her PhD in chemical engineering from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and her Bachelor's degrees in chemical engineering and molecular cell biology from the University of California-Berkeley.


Constance (Connie) Jeffery, Ph.D. is Associate Professor, Dept. Biological Sciences, University of Illinois at Chicago. Connie studied at MIT (B.S.), the University of California at Berkeley (Ph.D.), and Brandeis University (postdoc). Her lab’s research on protein structure and function combines methods from X-ray crystallography, biochemistry, and bioinformatics. She is best known for coining the term "moonlighting proteins". Current research topics include moonlighting proteins, the design of novel biosensors, genetic mutations that cause disease, and proteins involved in cancer and tuberculosis. Her contributions outside the lab include serving as a co-founder and co-organizer of the first ten Midwest Conferences on Protein Folding, Assembly and Molecular Motions (MWFold) and as a Member of the Biophysical Society CPOW national committee. She is an active member of organizations supporting women in STEM careers. She served as a mentor for the AWIS mentoring circle program and was one of the inaugural 24 mentors for the NeXXt Scholars Program, a national program of the New York Academy of Sciences, the U.S. Department of State, and participating women’s colleges to mentor undergraduate women in STEM disciplines from countries with Muslim-majority populations. She is continuing her volunteer efforts with the NYAS as a Master Mentor for the 1000 Girls/1000 Futures Initiative for high school girls from around the world who are interested in STEM.  


Lindsay Kuhn has a passion for learning and helping others, and it shows in her latest project, Inventing Heron, an online community of people sharing stories about what they call work. She created Inventing Heron as a PhD student in materials science at Brown University, so young people could learn about different careers firsthand and be inspired. So far, over 500 people in careers ranging from mushroom farmers to astrophysicists have shared their stories on the site, in written narratives and videos. She’s also developed outreach programs in local schools, including an Inventing Heron inspired career fair in North Smithfield High School in Rhode Island. One of Inventing Heron’s main objectives is to encourage young people, especially women, to go into STEM, and to celebrate the everyday, hardworking person. Lindsay is the ideal STEM advocate. Before returning to graduate school she worked as an engineer at Boeing, first on the C-17 Globemaster III and then in the Thermophysics group at the Satellite Development Center. She’s grateful for the recognition from WEST and hopes you sign up as a mentor and become part of the Inventing Heron community! www.inventingheron.com


Lauren Laidlaw is Senior Director of Marketing and Communications at Safety Partners. She leads the organization’s strategic marketing efforts as they continues to grow. Previously, Lauren was Director of Innovation Services at MassBio, the nation’s oldest biotechnology trade association. She most recently served as Director of Membership and Institutional Support at T1D Exchange, a non-profit organization focused on type 1 diabetes research. Lauren remains dedicated to the City of Revere, MA, where she grew up, and volunteers with several organizations. She is the current president of the board of directors of the Revere Beach Partnership, which is dedicated to continuing the heritage of Revere Beach as a nearby retreat for New England families. She also serves on the board of directors for the Revere Chamber of Commerce, and is also a volunteer instructor for St. Mary’s of the Assumption Parish.


Anna Li was initially encouraged to attend one of the WEST panel discussions by Laurence Reid, CEO of Warp Drive along with some of her colleagues. She was thrilled to get to know so many amazingly kind, down to earth, intelligent and determined women in science and many other fields. She learned a lot from WEST and eventually decided to contribute as a volunteer. Anna volunteered for most of the events and book clubs of 2016. She met her mentor and has made many friends through the WEST events. WEST feels like a large, caring family for Anna and all of the continuous women’s success stories will keep her inspired far into her future. Dr. Anna Li received her Ph.D. in Plant Pathology in 2007 and went on to become an associate professor of Shandong agricultural University in China. Due to her academic achievements in extreme environments fungi she was offered a visiting scholar position with Harvard University where she spent eighteen months conducting research with the Organismal and Evolutionary Biology Department. Currently, Anna is a microbiologist at Warp Drive Bio where she is a key player in the genome mining of novel antibiotics which has a major therapeutic potential for human medicine. She is proud and passionate about her career which can bring hope, cures and new life to patients and their families all over the globe.  


Terry McGuire brings 30 years of successful early stage investing experience to the healthcare industry.  He has invested in more than 50 companies, co-founding MicroCHIPS, Inspire Pharmaceuticals and Advanced Inhalation Research.  Mr. McGuire serves on the boards of  480 Biomedical, Adimab, Alector, Iora Health, MicroCHIPS, Arivale, Pulmatrix (PULM); Acceleron (XLRN); and Ironwood (IRWD). Mr. McGuire chairs the Board of Overseers of the Thayer School of Engineering, Dartmouth College; and serves on the boards of MIT’s Koch Institute for Integrative Cancer Research, the Rock Center for Entrepreneurship, Harvard Business School; and the Scientific Advisory Board at Brigham & Women’s Hospital. He is Chairman of the Global Venture Capital Congress and Chairman Emeritus of the National Venture Capital Association.  He has been named to Forbes Midas list multiple times, and was listed as one of Scientific American’s Worldview 100. He was awarded honorary Doctorate degrees from Ohio Wesleyan University and Canisius College for his work in translational science. Mr. McGuire holds a MBA from Harvard Business School, a MS in engineering from The Thayer School, Dartmouth College, and a BS in physics and economics from Hobart.


Heather Multhaupt is a Senior Director at Brooks Automation where she has worked for 21 years in the engineering organization. She currently is responsible for Engineering Operations at Brooks ensuring the product development processes and systems are effective and efficient. Heather received her Bachelor’s of Science degree in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Michigan, a Master’s of Science in Engineering Management from Tufts and an M.BA. from Boston University. Several years ago, Heather began volunteering with the Gift of Life organization to register possible bone marrow donors. That work evolved into partnering with a community-based 5K charity event, The Resolution Run to Kick Cancer and signing up over 300 possible donors (with one match) in the last 5 years. In 2014, Heather’s husband lost his battle with cancer. When friends wanted to raise college funds for their children, Heather turned that energy into the Kent J Riley Charitable Fund to distribute college scholarships to young people who participated in youth athletics and are pursuing a career in STEM or health science. Through grass roots fundraising efforts and a team of talented and dedicated friends, the fund has distributed 15 scholarships in the last two years and is on a path to sustain support for many years. Heather lives in Lexington with her children Galen and Erica. 


Richard Murray brings to Jounce more than two decades of experience building biologics R&D capabilities and moving exciting science through development for both startup biotechnology and large pharmaceutical companies. Dr. Murray joined Jounce from Merck, where he most recently served as senior vice president, biologics & vaccines research, and was a member of the Merck Research Laboratories (MRL) leadership team. There, he was responsible for the advancement of protein therapeutics and vaccines across a breadth of therapeutic areas, from discovery through development and manufacturing, including Merck’s immunotherapy programs. Prior to joining Merck, Dr. Murray provided strategic and operational guidance to protein therapeutic biotech companies and served as an advisor to venture capital and life science investors. He was the executive vice president and chief scientific officer at PDL BioPharma, and previously, he was co-founder and vice president of research at EOS Biotechnology, which was acquired in 2003 by Protein Design Labs. Prior to these executive level roles, he spent more than 10 years on the staff at DNAX Research Institute, which later became Schering Plough Biopharma, and now represents the main site for Merck’s Biologics discovery efforts. Dr. Murray holds a Ph.D. in microbiology and immunology from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and a B.S. in microbiology from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst.


Jessica Pearlman knew she was going to be an engineer since elementary school. While her friends’ “What I Want To Be When I Grow Up” collages read “Cosmetologist”, “Veterinarian”, and “Ballerina”, hers read “Engineer”. She accomplished that goal earning her BS in Computer Systems Engineering from Boston University. She then began her career as an applications engineer at Teradyne where she concentrated in mixed signal testing for the Semi Conductor Test Division. After a four year hiatus as an innovations engineer in the hospitality industry, she returned to Teradyne as a project manager in engineering R&D. Outside the office Jessica is mother to a nine-year-old third-grade girl. Jessica believes in instilling a love of math and science in her daughter as well as a desire to make the world a better place. Together they can often be found organizing toy drives, delivering food distributions, or volunteering with school supply and clothing collections. In the past, Jessica has fostered rabbits and dogs as they awaited their forever homes. Most recently she decided to act on her passion for children as she and her daughter opened their home as an unrestricted foster home supporting reunification. Over the last year they have shared their lives with five children ranging in age from five days to three years old. Children come into care for a variety of reasons, but they all need a safe place to stay with a warm bed, good food, and love. Jessica and her daughter are grateful for what they have and are happy to share.


Zoe Sobin is a Senior Software engineer at HubSpot, where she works on the Reporting and Analytics Team. She currently works on developing reporting tools and dashboards for businesses running on HubSpot's Sales and Marketing platforms. Though only 2 years out of college, Zoe is incredibly passionate about helping women early in their software engineering careers. This passion is what inspired her to design and run technical workshops that teach women studying computer science how to build their first web application -- a skill that often isn't taught in college studies, but is crucial when applying to software engineering jobs. So far Zoe has held these workshops in Boston and in Dublin and has taught over 150 women not only how to build their first web application, but also the importance of work outside of the classroom as they're applying for their first job or internship. Before working at HubSpot, Zoe graduated from Tufts University with a B.S in Computer Science and Entrepreneurial Leadership. 


Anne Thessen joined WEST after attending a networking event in 2011. She had just moved to the Boston area from Cape Cod and was looking to transition from academia to industry. After a WEST workshop about value propositions, she decided to start her own company. In 2013, Anne started The Data Detektiv, a data science company. The shift from academia to industry was difficult, but the programming at WEST helped her to gain the knowledge and confidence she needed to move forward. Anne began volunteering at WEST events in order to contribute to an organization that had helped her career through a difficult transition and to develop a network of intelligent and driven women dedicated to STEM. Anne has a BS in Biology and a PhD in oceanography from the University of Maryland. She worked on biodiversity informatics and data sharing at the Marine Biological Laboratory in Woods Hole. Anne made the shift from academia to industry in 2013 and is pioneering an alternative career as an independent scientist through her company and her affiliation with the Ronin Institute for Independent Scholarship. She is passionate about science, helping other academics transition into industry, and animal rescue.


Elaine Webb re-launched her engineering career in 2010 leveraging a previous 13-year career in telecommunications manufacturing at AT&T and Lucent. In six short years at Applied Material–Varian Semiconductor in Gloucester she moved from quality engineer to Senior Manager and along the way created a spirit for outreach. She credits the 12 years focused on her sons, her marriage, and her community with shaping and catalyzing the breadth, tenacity, and perspective of her public service. Her commitment to education and STEM outreach are threaded though all phases and aspects of her work and life. At Applied Materials, Elaine established outreach programs with the Gloucester Schools and Gloucester Education Foundation (GEF) to inspire and prepare students toward STEM careers. On the Board of LEAP for Education, a non-profit providing career, college readiness, and advising for low-income first-generation students, she helped to establish and support the Gloucester programs. In Reading, she has served on the School Committee for 9 years and is a founding member and current Vice President of the Reading Coalition Against Substance Abuse (RCASA). Elaine has been married for 30 years to her high school sweetheart and has 4 sons in college who are studying engineering. She holds a B.S in Industrial Engineering from Northeastern, an M.S. in Manufacturing Systems from Clarkson University, and an MBA from Boston University.