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March Pub Talk

Science Pub: “Changing the Strategy for Treating Neurodegenerative Diseases” followed by a Special Interactive Session
March 3rd, 2020 | 6:00 – 7:00 p.m.
Paradise Creek Brewery’s Downtown Restaurant – 245 SE Paradise St
Free Admission – $5.00 suggested donation (all donations support the Palouse Discovery Science Center)

Sip your favorite brew, while you learn a thing or two! Science Pub is an opportunity to enjoy learning about science in an informal atmosphere; no scientific background necessary! Just bring your curiosity and a thirst to learn.

Topics and presenters are arranged by the Palouse Discovery Science Center (PDSC) and WSU’s Entrepreneurial Faculty Ambassador (EFA) Program. All Donations support PDSC. Click here for more information.

This month’s speakers:

Join Joe Harding on March 3rd at Paradise Creek Brewery for his pub talk “Changing the Strategy for Treating Neurodegenerative Diseases” followed by a special interactive research commercialization session with Grant Norton and Kimberly Christen.

By any measure, the efforts to develop an effective treatment for any of the major neurodegenerative diseases like Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease have been an abject failure. The pharmaceutical industry has spent over one trillion dollars trying to develop anything effective with zero to show for it. So why? Come listen to Joe break down the reasons and present the effective approaches that have been championed by his research group to combat neurodegenerative diseases.

The special interactive session will highlight current research developments and what it takes to move the results of research out into the communities.

Dr. Joe Harding is a professor of physiology and neuroscience at WSU, and Chief Scientific Officer, director, and co-founder of Athira Pharma, a Seattle based company which is developing novel treatments for neurodegenerative diseases based on technology developed at WSU.

Joe’s laboratory is focused on the development of small molecule therapeutics that target growth factors. These include both activators and antagonists. Most recently they have been developing activators of hepatocyte growth factor (HGF), which have powerful regenerative properties. Two of these molecule are poised to enter human clinical trials for the treatment of Alzheimer’s disease. In addition to their potential utility in treating multiple neurodegenerative diseases they are currently being considered in his laboratory and collaborator’s laboratories as treatments for traumatic brain and spinal cord injury, transplant reinnervation, hearing loss, general wound healing, fibrotic diseases, type II diabetes and congestive heart failure. Conversely they are actively developing and examining the utility of HGF and dual HGF/macrophage stimulating protein (MSP) antagonists as anti-cancer and anti-angiogenic therapeutics. Dual HGF/MSP antagonist have exhibited promising therapeutic activity in xenograph models of pancreatic cancer, which has up until now been untreatable. One of Athira Pharma’s drugs is poised to enter the final phase of human clinical trials.

Dr. Grant Norton is Dean of the Honors College and Professor in the School of Mechanical and Materials Engineering. In 2007, Professor Norton co-founded GoNano Technologies, a start-up company focused on applications of a unique nanomaterial platform. More recently, his research on next-generation battery materials was licensed to Seattle-based Intellectual Ventures. As an EFA, Norton shares his expertise with the National Science Foundation’s SBIR program, technology licensing, and developing business plans for early-stage funding.

Dr. Kim Christen a Professor in and the Director of the Digital Technology and Culture program and the Director of the Center for Digital Scholarship and Curation at Washington State University. Her work explores the intersections of cultural heritage, traditional knowledge, information ethics, and the use of digital technologies in and by Indigenous communities globally. She directs several projects including: the Plateau Peoples’ Web Portal, a collaboratively curated site of Plateau cultural materials; Mukurtu CMS, a free and open source content management system and community access platform designed to meet the curatorial needs of Indigenous communities; and the Sustainable Heritage Network, an online initiative dedicated to making the preservation and digitization of cultural heritage materials sustainable, simple, and secure.

February Pub Talk

Science Pub: Family, Community and Distance – Research in Bolivia and India
Feb 4th, 2020 | 6:00 – 7:00 p.m.
Paradise Creek Brewery’s Downtown Restaurant – 245 SE Paradise St
Free Admission – $5.00 suggested donation (all donations support the Palouse Discovery Science Center)

Sip your favorite brew, while you learn a thing or two! Science Pub is an opportunity to enjoy learning about science in an informal atmosphere; no scientific background necessary! Just bring your curiosity and a thirst to learn.

Topics and presenters are arranged by the Palouse Discovery Science Center (PDSC) and WSU’s Entrepreneurial Faculty Ambassador (EFA) Program. All Donations support PDSC. Click here for more information.

This month’s speakers:

Join Anne Pisor and Io Palmer on February 4th at Paradise Creek Brewery for their pub talk “Family, Community and Distance – Research in Bolivia and India” Pisor and Palmer’s research stems from a singular question- Why and how do people build community? Through the movement of goods-fabric, food or communication, materials are used to build and maintain community.

Data from across the sciences suggest that humans are really flexible in our attitudes towards people from other places – these attitudes can range from aggressive to tolerant and everything in between. When and why do we build long-distance relationships? Pisor’s theoretical work suggests that long-distance family and friends can help when times get rough locally, or when something is only available where they live. Since 2010 she has collaborated with three populations of horticulturalists (slash-and-burn farmers) in the Bolivian Amazon. Though things are rough locally – their production is being negatively affected by floods, droughts, and windstorms, consequences of climate change – they are able to manage most of these effects in their communities. However, long-distance relationships are important for accessing things, both material and immaterial, from the city. During this talk Pisor will walk through who these long-distance relationships are with, how they are maintained, and why they matter in 2020.

Io Palmer’s research project titled Created Consumed and Scrubbed, addresses this question of community via the materiality of material. How do fabrics move through Indian societies. High end, finely woven and embedded silks and wool and cheap cotton tourist fabrics, move and create community and a language. Weddings are a multi million dollar business in India. Often lasting for days and planned to the smallest detail. Women come together to visit local fabric shops touching and desiring the abundance of hand and machine made material. Equally important to Palmer’s research are the tourist shops dotted along the western coast of southern India. Structures are built along the sea and display dresses, pants and shirts often made of fabrics woven and printed in India. Within these spaces tourists can purchase a memory. Another facet of Palmer’s research is in the space of the dhobi ghat- the open air laundries of India. A slowly disappearing part of this country, these dhobi ghats are entire communities of generational washer families who launder clothing from homes and industries throughout India. All these spaces weave together in a unique way to develop community through labor and commodity.

Dr. Ann Pisor is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Anthropology. Pisor is an evolutionary and cultural anthropologist interested in why people have such far-flung social relationships – relationships that cross community, ethnic, religious, and even national boundaries – and the role these relationships play in managing fisheries and coping with climate change. She collaborates with three populations of horticulturalists living in the Bolivian Amazon, where she’s been working since 2010.

Pisor directs the Human Sociality Lab at WSU, focused on the evolution, form, and function of human social organization. Her most recent papers are in Behavioral Ecology, Evolutionary Anthropology, Evolution & Human Behavior, and Psychological Science, and her most recent grant is from the National Socio-Environmental Synthesis Center (SESYNC). She came to WSU from the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology in 2018.

Io Palmer is an Associate Professor in the Department of Fine Arts at WSU. Palmer was born on Hydra – a motor-less Greek island off the coast of the Peleponesse. The first seven years of her life were spent amongst the donkeys, the fishes, the clear blue Mediterranean sea and the jazz music her parents listened to.

Through depictions of cleaning products, laborer’s garments and various other industrial and domestic forms, Palmer’s artworks explore the complex issues of class, capitalism and societal excess. Trained originally as a ceramicist, Io uses a variety of processes and materials including fabric, wood and sound.

Palmer has been featured in several national and international exhibitions of note. Some include the Dakar-International Arts Biennial, Dakar, Senegal; Working History, Reed College, Portland, OR; Hair Follies, Concordia University, Montreal and Rush Gallery, New York City, NY. Solo exhibitions include York College, CUNY, Jamaica, NY; Deluge Contemporary, Victoria, BC; The Art Gym at Marylhurst University, Marylhurst, OR and a two person exhibition at the Howard County Arts Council, Ellicott City, MD. She has participated in several artist residencies including the Sanskriti Foundation, New Delhi, India; the Santa Fe Art Institute, Santa Fe, NM and the Ucross Foundation, Clermont WY. Io received an Idaho Commission on the Arts grant, 2014. And most recently was awarded a Fulbright Nehru Research Grant to India, 2018-2019. Io holds and MFA from the University of Arizona, Tucson and a BFA from Tyler School of Art, Temple University, Philadelphia, PA.

November Pub Talk

Pub Talk Nov 5thScience Pub: Women’s Representation in Engineering: What are we Missing?
Nov 12th, 2019 | 6:00 – 7:00 p.m.
Paradise Creek Brewery’s Downtown Restaurant – 245 SE Paradise St
Free Admission – $5.00 suggested donation (all donations support the Palouse Discovery Science Center)

Sip your favorite brew, while you learn a thing or two! Science Pub is an opportunity to enjoy learning about science in an informal atmosphere; no scientific background necessary! Just bring your curiosity and a thirst to learn.

Topics and presenters are arranged by the Palouse Discovery Science Center (PDSC) and WSU’s Entrepreneurial Faculty Ambassador (EFA) Program. All Donations support PDSC. Click here for more information.

This month’s speakers:

Join Dr. Candis Claiborn and Dr. Julie Kmec on November 12th at Paradise Creek Brewery for their pub talk “Women’s Representation in Engineering: What are we Missing?”

Candis Claiborn will discuss her efforts to encourage more women students to pursue an engineering degree and why it is important to do so, both as a former engineering dean and in her current research. Julie Kmec will describe findings from a project exploring women’s engineering participation in Jordan, Malaysia, and Tunisia – – 3 countries where women have a much higher representation in engineering than in the US. She will also describe efforts to create a virtual reality experience to show how US-based engineers can learn from female engineers in these three countries.

Candis ClaibornDr. Candis Claiborn is a Professor in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering. She served as Dean of the Voiland College of Engineering and Architecture (VCEA) at Washington State University from 2006 to 2016. She led WSU’s NSF-funded ADVANCE program, which ran from 2008 to 2014. As Dean, she also oversaw numerous initiatives aimed at recruitment and retention of students, including women and underrepresented minorities, in engineering and computer science.

Candis currently serves on the Executive Advisory Board for the University of Houston Center for Advancing UH Faculty Success, as well as the advisory board for the University of Idaho Department of Chemical and Materials Engineering. She is a member of the University of Idaho Academy of Engineers. Fun fact: in 2018, she was featured in Pioneering Women, a special section of the Moscow Pullman Daily News.

Julie_KmecDr. Julie A. Kmec is a Professor of Sociology at WSU. Her research focuses on gender and race-based workplace inequality. She has published on topics including gender differences in work effort, work-family policy impacts, family caregiving penalties at work, the glass ceiling, and employment discrimination. She received the 2017 Sahlin Faculty Excellence Award for Instruction and teaches courses on social stratification, research methods, and the labor market. She is the Editor-in-Chief of the journal Sociology Compass.

October Pub Talk

Oct 8th Pub TalkScience Pub: Overlapping Spectra: Art and Science Collaboration on the Palouse.
Oct 8th, 2019 | 6:00 – 7:00 p.m.
Paradise Creek Brewery’s Downtown Restaurant – 245 SE Paradise St
Free Admission – $5.00 suggested donation (all donations support the Palouse Discovery Science Center)

Sip your favorite brew, while you learn a thing or two! Science Pub is an opportunity to enjoy learning about science in an informal atmosphere; no scientific background necessary! Just bring your curiosity and a thirst to learn.

Topics and presenters are arranged by the Palouse Discovery Science Center (PDSC) and WSU’s Entrepreneurial Faculty Ambassador (EFA) Program. All Donations support PDSC. Click here for more information.

This month’s speakers:

Join Dr. Amy Nielsen, Aaron Hendricksen, Joe Hedges, Jiemei Lin and Kelsey Baker as they discuss their own work as it relates to intersections between art and science, as well as their recent collaboration working with thermochromic paints on a large public mural at the new Kamiak Elementary School in Pullman, WA.

Joe Kelsey Amy Aaron
(From left)  Joe Hedges, Kelsey Baker, Amy Nielsen, Aaron Hendricksen, Jiemei Lin(taking photo)

Amy Nielsen is a Clinical Assistant Professor in the Department of Chemistry and serves as Executive Secretary of the Faculty Senate. She grew up in Rockford Illinois, home to Cheap Trick and the Rockford Peaches. (She was not a part of either group) She received a double B.S. in Chemistry and Botany from Iowa State University, where she performed research in carbohydrate chemistry with Nikki Pohl. Following her childhood dream of learning to surf, she went to California where she received her Ph.D. in Organic Chemistry, researching solid-state photochemistry with Miguel Garcia-Garibay at UCLA. She discovered her love of teaching organic chemistry as a Visiting Assistant Professor at Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles and joined the faculty of Washington State University in 2015. Her research interests include the synthesis of “smart” small molecule immunostimulants (in collaboration with Rock Mancini) and stimuli-responsive pigments and dyes for use in sensing and fine arts applications.

Joe Hedges is an Intermedia artist who developed an expansive practice that weaves together oil painting, new media, music and installation. Hedges recent works explore conventional approaches to rendering with oil painting that can literally and conceptually interface with new media elements, analog devices and objects to create works that are part-painting, part-installation, or sculpture. These “hypercombines” present still digital images or videos and sound juxtaposed with highly rendered paintings of landscapes and figures. Exhibitions provide opportunities for viewers to reflect on the evolution of media technologies, history of painting, and screen-based, algorithmically mediated experience of daily life in the 21st century. Hedges is currently an Assistant Professor of Painting/Intermedia at Washington State University.

Jiemei Lin is an artist, designer, and curator born in Hangzhou, China. Lin is currently living and working in the Inland Northwest of Washington. Lin works with digital and traditional media such as painting, drawing, ceramics and embroidery. Lin’s works frequently take on themes of individual and cultural identity with attention to design and color. She is committed to combating social injustice through themes explored in her work and by promoting the fine arts. As a curator, she has helped to organize a variety of exhibitions from Cincinnati, Ohio to Beijing, China.

Kelsey Baker is an interdisciplinary artist working with painting, video, and installation to harness the power of light and color to contemplate and create dreamlike spaces. She is currently living in eastern Washington and earning her master’s in fine arts from Washington State University. Her work has been featured in group and solo exhibitions throughout Texas, such as the New Texas Talent exhibition in Dallas, People’s Gallery in Austin City Hall, Woodlands High School Art Trust in the Woodlands, and Austin Art Boards Project.

Aaron Hendricksen was born and raised in Melbourne, Florida on the Space Coast. He graduated from the University of South Florida with a B.S. in Chemistry where he conducted research with Dr. Bill J. Baker in marine natural products chemistry. In 2018, he joined Dr. Rock Mancini’s Lab at Washington State University and is currently researching α,ω-Heterotelechelic polymers. His interests include music, nature, and composition.

May Pub Talk

Science Pub: The Language of Water: How It Supports Us And What It’s Telling Us
May 7th, 2019 | 6:00 – 7:00 p.m.
Paradise Creek Brewery’s Downtown Restaurant – 245 SE Paradise St
Free Admission – $5.00 suggested donation (all donations support the Palouse Discovery Science Center)

Sip your favorite brew, while you learn a thing or two! Science Pub is an opportunity to enjoy learning about science in an informal atmosphere; no scientific background necessary! Just bring your curiosity and a thirst to learn.

Topics and presenters are arranged by the Palouse Discovery Science Center (PDSC) and WSU’s Entrepreneurial Faculty Ambassador (EFA) Program. All Donations support PDSC. Click here for more information.

This month’s speakers:

Do you know where your water comes from? Water is essential to human life, but ensuring we have it when and where we need it is a difficult task. Over millennia, humans have responded to this challenge by developing increasingly efficient ways to collect, store, and access water. Now, however, we’re realizing that while we’ve made water available anytime we desire at the turn of a tap, this convenience leaves us disconnected from the environment and from each other. People who spend a lot of time living near wild rivers and lakes have a different connection to water than those of us who access it through our kitchen faucets. They understand that water is capable of agency and action, that it has the ability to deeply influence human connection and human storytelling, that it has a language that can be heard and interpreted.

Join Julie Padowski and Debbie Lee to learn more about how to reconnect with water by better understanding how we use it and what it is saying to us.

Julie Padowski is the Assistant Director of the Center for Environmental Research, Education, and Outreach (CEREO) at Washington State University, and a Clinical Assistant Professor with the State of Washington Water Research Center.  She was a NSF-IGERT graduate fellow, receiving her PhD in Soil and Water Science from the University of Florida, and was a post-doctoral scholar with the Woods Institute for the Environment at Stanford University.  Her interdisciplinary training allows her to integrate hydrological and human dimensions to understand patterns in and consequences of human development of water sources, including the physical, social, economic, and institutional drivers.  Padowski’s current research interests span a spectrum of water management issues, ranging from the food-energy-water nexus, to green stormwater infrastructure, and municipal water systems.  Her work has been funded by the NSF, USDA, NASA, and USAID as well as by the WA Department of Ecology and she has published more than 20 scientific publications in journals such as Global Environmental Change and the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences as well as in other academic journals and books or as reports.

Debbie Lee is Regents Professor of English at Washington State University where she teaches literature and writing and directs the Visiting Writers Program. She holds an MFA in creative nonfiction and fiction, and a PhD in 19th-century literature. She is author/editor of eight books on the environment, oral history, poetry, and travel literature, most recently The Land Speaks: New Voices at the Intersection of Oral and Environmental History (Oxford University Press, 2017). Her literary nonfiction book Remote: Fifteen Years through the Wilderness is forthcoming in 2020. She is director of the Selway-Bitterroot Wilderness History Project for which she received a four-year National Endowment for the Humanities Collaborative Research Grant and an Idaho Humanities Grant. She’s also recipient of the Charles A. Ryskamp Fellowship from the American Council of Learned Societies, the Susanne M. Glasscock Humanities Book Prize for Interdisciplinary Scholarship, and the Arctic Circle Artists Residency. In addition, she has published over 25 creative nonfiction essays in the Los Angeles Review of Books, Terrain, Narrative, and Vela among other journals and anthologies, where they have been contest finalists and received a Pushcart Prize special mention, is a fellow at the Black Earth Institute, an environmental think-tank, and a board member at-large for the Selway-Bitterroot Frank Church Wilderness Foundation.