We Speak Science Judges

We Speak Science Judges

Below are key information what judges are looking for:

  • Creative approach– A novel strategy, perspective, or interpretation of the topic at hand
  • Content – Informed, well-written, and concise content on a SPACE and STEM topic
  • Effective communication – effectively presented and communicated

The Judges for the We Speak Science Space and STEM competitions are shown below.

Mani Thirru

Aerospace & Satellite Solutions, Amazon Web Services

Biography

Mani leads the APJ Aerospace & Satellite Solutions team at Amazon Web Services. She works to enable the space industry to achieve its most ambitious goals through the power of AWS cloud. She is passionate about deploying transformative services like machine learning, high-performance computing, satcomms & data analytics to improve every aspect of the space enterprise and mission. Today she is responsible for building innovative partnerships and vibrant connections across private enterprises, public agencies, R&D institutions and start-ups both locally and internationally to deliver outcomes in a range of areas from space enabled agriculture and emergency & disaster management through to space exploration and small sat research.

Mani currently serves on SmartSat CRC’s Artificial Intelligence for Space in Australia, advises the Queensland Government’s Space Industry Reference Group on matters pertaining to the growth of the state’s growth industry and is a member of the American Chamber of Commerce Space Committee. Mani is outspoken on the power of technology innovation as a societal game changer and the significance of space industry to the nation’s social well being and economic prosperity. She is strong advocate of women and minorities in technology, dedicated to empowering and uplifting young women. And can also be often found, passing on that sense of adventure to the next generation of students to pursue STEM careers.

Willian DAS, Ph.D.

Academic experience: NASA and Staffordshire University

Biography
I am Dr. Willian DAS, and I am currently a Lecturer in Molecular Genetics and Genomics at Staffordshire University, where I am lecturing biological and biomedical students, supervising graduate students in Omics, Ageing, and Space Biology projects, and coordinating efforts with NHS Genomics services. I am part of Class 2 of NASA’s STAR (Spaceflight Technology, Applications, and Research) training program. I co-lead the Level 07 module of Space Omics at the International Space University (ISU) and am a guest lecturer at University College London. I co-founded and I am now the head of multi-omics and systems biology of the Space Omics Topical Team funded by the European Space Agency—a group with members from Belgium, France, Germany, Sweden, Spain, and the United Kingdom. I also joined the International Standards for Space Omics Processing (ISSOP), a consortium formed by scientists linked to the European, American, and Japanese Space Agencies (ESA, NASA, and JAXA) to define the future of space omics procedures.

My main aligned interests with the UK Space Life and Biomedical Sciences Association include, but are not limited to: fostering and developing mutually beneficial relationships at national and international levels between academic, scientific, healthcare, and industrial sector bodies conducting activities that pertain to human spaceflight (Objective); and independent living-ageing, lifestyle, and nutrition (Strategy R & D Theme).

Joseph Borg

Associate Professor

Biography

Professor Joseph Borg is an academic, molecular geneticist and principal investigator at the University of Malta. His primary interest is the understanding of development globin gene switching, regulation and control of erythropoiesis and the use of next generation sequencing tools to uncover locked secrets of life. He leads the Borg Group at the University of Malta – with most of his students reading for M.Sc and PhD degree focusing on life sciences.

In November 2020 – I started my country’s’ first ever biomedical science mission to the International Space Station on board a SpaceX CRS23 vehicle – transporting human skin samples with microbiomes from Type 2 Diabetic Patients’ foot ulcers. The SpaceOMIX mission was the first under the Maleth Program – with subsequent ones planned – all related to promote and understand life in space. A full multi-omic (DNA, RNA and protein) analysis are presently being carried out after their return to Earth.

Future missions will conduct on site genetic and genomic testing under Low Earth Orbit, Moon and Mars missions. These will assist greatly in the planning and design of future manned missions to space, ensure longer and better stays and mitigating the ill-effects that are known to inflict life.

Jackie Carpenter

Consultant Of We Speak Science

Biography

Jackie has a diverse and long-standing background in education. Her passion for STEM and STEAM is embedded into the broader goals of her company – One Giant Leap Australia; working with industry, academia, governments, and the community to increase pathways and access to employment. Jackie links industry and education through innovation. Her vision is to create an organisation that drives the transformation of Australian Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Mathematics education, preparing young Australians for the opportunities of the future.

  • Founder and Director One Giant Leap Australia
  • Managing Director of the Not for Profit – One Giant Leap Australia Foundation
  • Destination Imagination Australia Affiliate Director
  • Australian Representative of the Global Friendship through Education Organisation
  • International and National STEM/STEAM education consultant
  • Education representative Space Industry Association of Australia
  • Coordinator of International Seeds in Space with 11 Space Agencies on behalf of JAXA

Nate Taylor

Biography

Nate is a graduate in Applied Physics and Mathematics from the University of South Australia where he will commence an Honours program in 2022. Nate is also an International Space University (ISU) alumni having completed the Southern Hemisphere Space Studies Program (SHSSP) in 2020.

Nate works as a Space Communicator at the Australian Space Discovery Centre aiming to inspire Australians in taking up the challenge and opportunity of a career in the Australian space industry. Additionally, Nate works with the University Space Engineering Consortium (UNISEC-Global) where he develops content to make space education accessible to all people around the world.

Philip Carvil

Biography

A background in Human Spaceflight Physiology, Phil undertook his PhD for the European Space Agency evaluating a proposed astronaut countermeasure that flew in orbit on two occasions. He has worked in the Health & Life Science and Space Sectors for >10 years, where he currently leads the North West of England’s HealthTech Cluster and is co-leading strategic development of a North West Space Cluster.

Holding appointments nationally/internationally, he is the elected coordinator of the UK Space Life and Biomedical Science Association – UKSpaceLABS and President of the European Low Gravity Research Association – ELGRA.

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