Below are just a few of the "stories" from the people who make up the SomaLogic community.
Originally from New York, Jennifer relocated to Colorado in 1996 to work in the biopharma industry after attending the State University of New York-College at Geneseo. Early in her career, she worked with Nebojsa Janjic (SomaLogic’s Chief Science Officer) and grew interested in the technology SomaLogic was developing, subsequently joining the company in 2009.
As an Alliance Manager, Jennifer works closely with SomaLogic’s partner Quest Diagnostics to help bring new diagnostic products to market. She is also responsible for portfolio management of the discovery product development pipeline, i.e., the new diagnostics emerging out of SomaLogic’s proteomics research.
Jennifer takes advantage of the Colorado outdoors, enjoying its opportunities for hiking, biking and skiing with her family. She also confesses an honest appreciation of Dr. Seuss: “The books have great messages in them. For example, ‘You have brains in your head. You have feet in your shoes. You can steer yourself in any direction you choose.’ This quote is one of my favorites because it tells our children that they can do anything they set their minds to, and has a great timeless message”
Originally from Minnesota, Chris and his family relocated to Colorado when he was in the 5th grade and he has lived here ever since. Chris graduated from the University of Colorado with a degree in Biochemistry. When he heard about the technology SomaLogic was developing he was instantly drawn to the company and he began his career here in May of 2001, where he now runs the assay execution group.
Chris recalls when he first interviewed at SomaLogic: “I was in the middle of my interview with Dan Schneider and Sheela Waugh when Larry Gold (the CEO) walked into the room and said “Excuse me,” walked over to Dan, kissed him on the forehead, said ‘thank you’ and turned around and walked out. They laughed and I laughed. I will never forget that interview for the rest of my life!”
Outside of SomaLogic Chris enjoys spending time with his wife, Ashley, and their two dogs. He enjoys being outdoors, skiing, backpacking and playing softball. He is an avid runner (despite his efforts not to be called a “runner”) and has participated in many marathons. In fact his entire family runs, calling themselves “Team Bock.”
Dakota began his career at SomaLogic in 2008, and is responsible for receiving and logging all shipments that arrive at SomaLogic, ensuring they are delivered and stored appropriately, and making sure that the company follows strict medical waste disposal guidelines.
Dakota was excited to work here: "After talking with an employee of SomaLogic and learning what the company was doing, I knew I wanted to join," he says, "It is a great feeling working for a company that is actually doing something for the better of mankind: I come to work every day ready to give it a 110% of my energy."
Outside of the office Dakota enjoys hunting, fishing and video games. A newlywed, Dakota and his wife just purchased their first home and welcomed the arrival of their first child January 7, 2013.
Born in Canada, Stu pursued his degree in Disease Ecology at the University of Munster in Germany. Subsequently, as a faculty member at Colorado State University, he found himself looking for a more challenging position, when heard about the biotech industry in Boulder and found SomaLogic. "After interviewing, I was intrigued in what SomaLogic was doing," he says. Today Stu works within the SomaLogic’s bioinformatics group, where his responsibilities include the analysis of assay and clinical data. "I absolutely love what I do, I am constantly being pressed and challenged to learn new thing and welcome the challenges," he says, "It’s fun, and the people I work with are fantastic. It’s not even like a real job to me: it’s more like a family."
Outside of work, Stu is an avid cyclist who enjoys the outdoors and likes to people watch. Stu is in a committed relationship with a woman who is a reproductive physiologist at CSU, whose career has her working with all different breads of animals. They have adopted quite a few of these animals. Currently they have 2 cats, 2 dogs and a chicken named Sir. Alfred Wallis.
Amy began her career in 2010 as an intern at SomaLogic, and soon became an employee with multiple responsibilities, mainly identifying lead SOMAmers to a specific targets. "I love working with really smart people and having the support to do different types of experiments," she says. "If you have a good idea you get to pursue it. I get to try my hand at a lot of different things, but I think that is what I love most about SomaLogic is all the support you get for management."
Outside of the office Amy enjoy chasing after her two year old child, biking and hiking. She has been married for three years and her husband is a sales representative in the bicycle industry.
Amy obtained her Bachelor’s degree in biosciences from The George Washington University and her PhD. in biochemistry from the University of Colorado.
As the Canadian-born daughter of a lieutenant commander in the US Navy, Rachel’s early childhood involved constant relocation. The family finally settled in Maryland, where she pursued studies in microbiology at the University of Maryland. “College life was like an extension of my childhood; It was freedom without rules,” she says. “I grew a great deal in college; learning to make my own decisions and live with the consequence of the decisions I made.”
After yet another move in 1984, this time to Colorado, Rachel subsequently joined SomaLogic in October of 2001. As the Clinical Research Director, Rachel is responsible for the research SomaLogic is doing in cancer diagnostics, designing studies and working closely with the company’s bioinformatics analysis experts. “The vision of improving health care for everyone with measures of wellness and early diagnosis of disease really spoke volumes to me and I knew I wanted to be a part of this technology,” she says.
Away from her SomaLogic duties, Rachel enjoys reading, outdoor activities along the Front Range, and competitive agility with her dog Evie, who is an enthusiastic teammate and national award winner.
Darryl Perry, a native Coloradan, returned to his home state following graduation from University of California, Davis to begin a career in biostatistics and data management for clinical trials. He soon decided that including research and science in his work would be more rewarding. Darryl found what he was looking for at SomaLogic, joining the team in September of 2011. “It was new and exciting to me: What I do now much more fulfilling than just running clinical trials.”
At SomaLogic, Darryl works with the assay group in several capacities, working with SomaLogic collaborators, designing studies and determining what portion of the massive data (he calls it the “firehose”) produced by SomaLogic’s technology to use in further analysis.
Darryl’s wife Claudia, whom he admires and is very proud of, is a published author (she writes two ongoing series, Alex the Fey and The Denver Cereal, and is working on a third). Together they enjoy gardening (including keeping bees), and are perpetual beginners in learning both ballroom dancing and the Spanish language.
Originally from California, Alex moved to Colorado in 1987 and joined SomaLogic in April of 2012 following several years at Allos Therapeutics. Alex is the first employee visitors have contact with when they arrive at SomaLogic, as her responsibilities include Font Desk management, as well as Office Facilities and support of several SomaLogic managers.
"Working at SomaLogic is been a great opportunity for me. When I first started at SomaLogic I was walking through the office and noticed that there were no employee titles on the office name plates. When I asked why employees had no titles on their name plates. I was told that it was because we are all one team no matter your station in the company. That is when I knew that SomaLogic really does believe that it takes a whole company to be successfully not just a small group of employees." She says. "I am a Receptionist among all of these highly educated people and never once have I ever felt like a lesser member of the company."
Alex comes from a big family. She has four sisters, one brother, fifteen nieces and nephews, three children, one grandson, two dogs and a cat. Needless to say Alex’s family life is fairly busy on the weekends. "I am very close with my siblings. We have breakfast once a month and a weekly conference call to keep up with each other." Whenever she can slip away from her family, her and her husband of 13 years enjoy going to the casinos in Blackhawk, CO.
Originally from New York, Sheela relocated to Colorado in 1990, and was first introduced to SomaLogic’s CEO Larry Gold while she was interviewing for an RA position with post-doc Craig Tuerk in Larry’s MCDB lab at CU. Sheela has been working with Larry for more than 22 years, [aside from a year with Gilead (1999-2000) and short stint at Amgen in the summer of 2000]. "I love working for Larry, and all my friends work here," she says. "This company is like my second family. The encouragement and support I get from my manager to conduct different kinds of experiments is great."
Outside of work, Sheela enjoys scuba diving in Honduras, and spends her summer weekends camping, boating, gardening and watercolor painting. Her winters consist of skiing trips with her girls and spending time with her family. Sheela attended the State University of New York at Stony Brook and graduated from the University of North Carolina with her Master’s degree in microbiology.
Sheri Wilcox and her family were interested in relocating to Colorado. Her opportunity to do so came in 2001, when she talked with SomaLogic’s CEO Larry Gold about the then-new company’s focus on proteomics, and together they decided she would be a great addition to the SomaLogic team. Looking back on the early days of SomaLogic, she remembers “It was harder than we thought it would be. We’ve made a lot of changes to how things are done; but those changes have enabled the technology we have today, and I am very proud of the growth of the company.”
Today, as Director of Discovery Sciences, Sheri’s responsibilities include generating and characterizing the SOMAmer reagents used for biomarker discovery.
Sheri says that working for SomaLogic is not just a job: She wants to give doctors new tools to detect the early stages of cancer. “I think that if SOMAscan was available when my parents got sick, they would have detected the lung cancer a lot sooner and it would have made a difference.”
Even as a child growing up in Stone Mountain, Georgia, Sheri recalls that she was fascinated by science. In high school she was a Science Olympian and made it all the way to the State Championship. She also thinks that her younger sister’s childhood fight with Wilms tumor kidney cancer had a big impact on her choice to become a scientist.