in a Galaxy Far, Far Away
How can media encourage girls and women to pursue careers in science? One way is to feature exciting and dynamic portrayals of female scientists in movies and TV shows. Sounds easy enough, but the Institute’s 2012 research on the career occupations of female characters in family films, prime time and children’s television showed that there was a 15:1 ratio of male to female characters in science. Why is this so important? Because by 2018, there will be 1.2 million US job openings in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) fields, with a significant shortage of qualified applicants to fill them. This See Jane Salon will showcase real women pioneers in STEM along with entertainment industry leaders who are creating great female characters in Science.
Science and the Screen: Geena Davis
Institute Salon Event a Huge Success
Informative, inspiring, and innovative are the three key words that come to mind when I reflect upon the most recent salon event hosted by the Geena Davis Institute on June 10th at the Google LA offices. “Women Pioneers in a Galaxy Far, Far Away” aimed to unite the arenas of media and science highlighting the current reflection (or lack thereof) of women in each of these fields. The result was an eclectic and unique blend of panelist who represented real-life science, media creators, as well as those who blend both worlds both in front of, and behind, the camera.
Held at Google
Panelists: Andrea Fernandez, Dr. Kathy Magliato, Taryn O’Neill, Jaime Paglia, Christina Reynolds, Amanda Segel, Laura Faye Tenenbaum and Moderator, Megan Smith
Vincent Bruzzese, CEO, C4; Madeline Di Nonno, CEO, Geena Davis Institute on Gender in Media; and Geena Davis
Panelist Taryn O’Neill and Annie Tedesco
Andrea Fernandez, Dr. Kathy Magliato, Taryn O’Neill, Geena Davis, Jaime Paglia, Christina Reynolds, Amanda Segel, Madeline Di Nonno, Laura Faye Tenenbaum and Moderator, Megan Smith
Geena Davis, Crystal Kung and Rob Minkoff
Katherine Pieper, USC, Dr. Stacy Smith, USC, Madeline Di Nonno, CEO, Geena Davis Institute on Gender in Media and Kate Brandt, Warner Brothers
Creative Director for GoldieBlox, is passionate about kids’ content, and girl characters are her forté. Before joining GoldieBlox, she worked as a multi-disciplinary designer and art director in kids’ media. She has worked with a wide range of clients and collaborators including DisneyToon, Paramount Pictures, Simon & Schuster, and Disney Interactive. Andrea has a bit of “Peter Pan Complex,” creating an inevitable connection to the projects she’s most passionate about.
Kathy E. Magliato,
MD, MBA, FACS
Dr. Magliato is one of the few female cardiothoracic surgeons in the world. She is currently the Director of Women’s Cardiac Services at Saint John’s Medical Center in Santa Monica, California, where she is developing a Multidisciplinary Women’s Health Center to address the cardiac needs of female patients. Prior to joining Saint John’s Medical Center, Dr. Magliato was a heart/lung transplant surgeon and Director of the Mechanical Assist Device Program at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles.
Dr. Magliato received a Bachelor of Science degree in Biochemistry at Union College in Schenectady, New York where she graduated with Cum Laude honors. After earning her medical degree from Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, Ohio, Dr. Magliato completed an internship and residency in general surgery at Akron General Medical Center. Further postgraduate training included a research fellowship in thoracic organ transplantation at the University of Michigan Medical Center in Ann Arbor and a cardiothoracic surgery residency at Loyola University Medical Center in Chicago, Illinois. Dr Magliato also completed a fellowship in heart transplantation, lung transplantation, and ventricular assist devices at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center. In 2006, she earned an Executive MBA from the UCLA Anderson School of Management.
Dr. Magliato is a member of many professional societies, including the American Society for Artificial Internal Organs, the Association of Women Surgeons, the American College of Surgeons, the Society of Thoracic Surgeons and the International Society for Heart and Lung Transplantation. With the surgical treatment of congestive heart failure her primary focus, Dr Magliato has served as either principal investigator or co-investigator for many clinical trials and has contributed numerous articles and abstracts to the medical literature. Additionally, she has a keen interest in promoting cardiac health for women and was recently elected President of the Board of the Greater LA County American Heart Association. She is the first woman to ever hold this position in the history of this board.
Dr. Magliato’s areas of expertise include congestive heart failure, heart transplantation, lung transplantation, heart disease in women and artificial heart technology. She has served as a consultant to a wide array of biomedical technology companies including start-up ventures, privately held companies and mature public companies and holds a patent on a cardiac diagnostic medical device which is under development by her company, Cordex Systems LLC. Currently, she is overseeing the clinical trial of the Jarvik artificial heart for the United States.
Dr. Magliato is the recipient of many national and regional awards including the Women’s Leadership Exchange 2003 Compass Award and, in 2006, was initiated into the American College of Surgeons. In 2008, Dr. Magliato was honored at the American Red Cross gala, along with the cast of Grey’s Anatomy, and received their “Spirit of Humanitarianism” award. In 2010, she and Kate White, editor-in-chief of Cosmopolitan magazine, were awarded the Exceptional Women award in Boston. In 2012, Dr. Magliato was named “One of the Most Inspirational Alumni” of UCLA Anderson School of Management as part of their 75th anniversary celebration. In October, 2013, Dr. Magliato received The Distinguished Alumni Award from Case Western Reserve University. This, their highest award, was presented to her by the 16th Surgeon General of the United States.
She has been highlighted by the media as an expert in heart disease and has been seen on NBC’s iVillage and Home & Family, ABC News, CBS News and NBC News as well as being featured on WebMD and EverydayHealth.com. She has been featured in many magazines including Cosmopolitan, Reader’s Digest and SHAPE magazines. She also appeared on the Martha Stewart Show and was interviewed by Barbara Walters for a 20/20 segment about heart disease that included President Bill Clinton, David Letterman, Robin Williams, Charlie Rose and Regis Philbin. Additionally, she has appeared on OWN’s Oprah Winfrey show. She has worked on character development with actresses Brooke Smith, Mary McDonnell and Kim Raver, all of whom have played cardiac surgeons on Grey’s Anatomy. Dr. Magliato has been featured in several documentaries including Lifetime’s Everywoman and the National Geographic Explorer series “The Moment of Death” which aired September 23, 2008. Dr. Magliato’s memoir “HEART MATTERS” was published by Random House Publishing, Broadway Books Division in February 2010 and received a starred review by Publisher’s Weekly and a 4 out of 4 star review in People Magazine.
With hundreds of speaking engagements throughout the world, she is a sought after lecturer and has been an invited speaker on a multitude of topics to both professional and lay audiences. Her lecture on women’s leadership entitled “Leading with your Heart” was recently presented at the Maria Shriver Women’s Conference in Los Angeles, hosted by actresses Geena Davis, Reese Witherspoon and Mindy Kaling.
Dr. Magliato lives in Pacific Palisades, California, with her husband, a Liver Transplant Surgeon at Cedars Sinai Medical Center and their two sons, ages seven and nine.
Taryn O’Neill is an actress, writer, web series producer and co-founder of the Actresses for STEM group SCIRENS. Born in Vancouver Canada, she spent her childhood as a competitive figure skater and was a national medalist in Ice Dancing. She graduated from Duke University with a degree in Economics, Theater and Film, the latter bringing her to LA to spend a semester at The USC Film School. She spent her early years in Hollywood at the William Morris Agency and Alliance Atlantis Communications before transitioning into acting. She has worked on numerous commercials and such TV shows as NCIS, VEGAS and LIE TO ME before being cast as the recurring character ‘June Sanders’ on BYUTV’s 1960’s family drama GRANITE FLATS.
In the midst of pursuing her acting career, Taryn used her industry experience to become an early pioneer in New Media, producing the 2009 Streamy nominated scifi web series AFTER JUDGMENT and its follow up HURTLING THROUGH SPACE AT AN ALARMING RATE. She has also acted in over 20 web series including the award winning show COMPULSIONS, for which she won Best Supporting Actress at the Indie Soap Awards in 2010. Spearheading her shows’ social media campaigns inspired her to start a blog, which lead her to adding script writing to her repertoire. In 2010, her first comedy script, “The Very True Adventures of the Madoff Girls,” was a Finalist in the NYTVFest FOX Comedy Pilot Contest. She most recently wrote a full length digital series for STAN LEE and Michael Eisner’s VUGURU’S YouTube channel and has numerous web and tv projects in development, scifi being her genre of choice. Her love of scifi inspired her to study the science behind the fiction and it developed into a full passion for numerous STEM fields. This passion has culminated in the formation of SCIRENS, a group of four ‘sci-enthusiastic’ actresses dedicated to using their social media platforms for science outreach and advocacy, with the ultimate goal being to create mainstream content that is infuses with science storylines and accurate STEM characters. In her free time she geeks out over ‘Game of Thrones’, blogs for Women in Entertainment site MS. IN THE BIZ, and trains in Martial Arts.
Jaime Paglia is a television and film writer/producer/director who has developed projects with Fox Broadcasting Company, ABC Studios, TNT, Universal Cable Productions, MGM Television, New Line Cinema, MTV Films, The Canton Company, and Akiva Goldsman’s Weed Road Pictures, among others. He is currently developing Stephen King’s The Shop pilot for TNT and writing/producing The Flash for the CW. He is also the co-creator of the record-setting Syfy Channel television series, Eureka. His mom enjoyed the show very much.
Christina Reynolds is an executive in the children’s programming department at Amazon Studios, where she is developing live-action original series for the streaming network, including Annedroids and Gortimer Gibbon’s Life on Normal Street.
Christina joined Amazon Studios after seven years at Cartoon Network, where she was a development and production executive on the Scooby Doo and Ben 10 live-action television movies and worked in current programming on the animated series Teen Titans, Go!, Annoying Orange and Beware the Batman. Prior to that, she worked in feature development at DreamWorks, where she contributed to the development of the romantic comedy Just Like Heaven and the musical Dreamgirls.
Originally from Connecticut, Christina earned her degree in Film & Photography at Ithaca College. She resides in Los Angeles with her husband Matthew and has her own preschool focus group at home with her daughter, Dylan Lucille
After graduating early from the University of Michigan, Amanda Segel moved to Los Angeles to follow her dream of writing series television. She wrote in the evenings while paying her bills by working as an assistant to various entertainment executives, including award-winning producer, Arnon Milchan.
A veteran writer / producer of ‘Without a Trace,’ ‘The Good Wife’ and ‘Nikita,’ Segel is now in her fourth season on ‘Person of Interest.’
Megan is Chief Technology Officer of the United States of America. She has been an entrepreneur, tech evangelist, engineer, catalyst and connector. At Google[x], Megan worked on a range of projects including co-creating/hosting SolveForX to encourage and amplify technology-based moonshot thinking and collaboration. For nine years prior she led Google’s New Business Development team managing early-stage partnerships, pilot explorations, and technology licensing for Google’s global engineering and product teams. She led the acquisitions of Keyhole (Google Earth), Where2Tech (Google Maps) and Picasa, and also led the Google.org team transition to add more engineering with Google Crisis Response, GoogleforNonprofits, Earth Outreach/Engine and increased employee engagement. Prior to joining Google, Megan was CEO and earlier, COO of PlanetOut, the leading LGBT online community, where the team broke through many barriers and partnered closely with AOL, Yahoo!, MSN and other major web players, and was early at General Magic and Apple Japan. Over the years, Megan has contributed to a wide range of engineering projects, including an award-winning bicycle lock, space station construction program, solar cookstoves and was a member of the MIT student team who designed, built and raced a solar car 2000 miles across the Australian outback. She holds a bachelor’s and master’s degrees in mechanical engineering from MIT, where she now serves on the board. She completed her master’s thesis work at the MIT Media Lab.
Laura Faye Tenenbaum
Laura Faye Tenenbaum is an Innovator in Science Communication and a member of the Earth Science Communications Team at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL), where she is responsible for creating content for the climate website “Global Climate Change: Vital Signs of the Planet ” climate.nasa.gov and the “Earth Right Now” blog climate.nasa.gov/blog.
She develops interactive new media products to engage and educate students, teachers, and professionals in climate and environmental science. Her team won two Webby Awards, the Internet industry’s highest honor, for Best Science Website. She also holds a faculty position in the Physical Science Department at Glendale Community College for the last 13 years.
Ms. Tenenbaum studied Marine Science at the University of California, Santa Cruz as both an undergraduate and graduate student. She lived in Southeast Asia during the 90’s and travelled extensively. She worked as an Underwater Researcher on the Kelp Forest Project at the Monterey Bay Aquarium, as a Senior Marine Consultant for Santa Monica Baykeepers, as an Underwater Scientist for the World Wildlife Fund in Thailand, and taught SCUBA in Thailand, Sri Lanka and Hong Kong.
Her goal is to bring science, multimedia and education together to attract a highly motivated and enthusiastic new generation that will be ready to take on the huge environmental challenges we face.
With your help, if she can see it, she can be it.
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