Diversify your symposium or workshop! The ACS Committee on Minority Affairs Speakers Directory contains names, contact information, and expertise of chemists who are willing to give talks on a variety of topics. Click on the speaker’s name to see details about their expertise and background.
Dr. Crystal Edie ValdezBioinformatics Scientist MedivationEarly Development
Crystal E. Valdez was born and raised in Littlerock, California, a small town within Los Angeles County. In 2009, she earned her B.S. in Biochemistry at the California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo (Cal Poly). During her time at Cal Poly, she pursued a Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) program at the University of Oregon. Under the tutelage of Prof. Marina Guenza, she performed molecular dynamics simulations on biomolecules, namely HIV-1 protease. Crystal then went on to attend graduate school at the University of California, Los Angles (UCLA) and earned her Ph.D. in chemistry under the mentorship of Professor Anastassia N. Alexandrova. Her graduate research was on investigating metal-dependent functionalities of natural metalloproteins and utilizing and developing multiscale tools to design artificial metalloenzymes. She completed her postdoctoral work at Stanford University with Prof. Edward Solomon, where she learned spectroscopic and computational tools to explicate structure/function correlations in metalloenzymes. Crystal is now working as a Bioinformatics Scientist at Medivation, applying her skills to the growing field of translational bioinformatics within the oncology space.
Throughout her scientific career, Crystal has been dedicated to and passionate about outreach and promoting diversity and inclusion in STEM. During her time at Cal Poly, she was the Vice President of the professional chemistry fraternity, Alpha Chi Sigma (ΑΧΣ). During her tenure, she orchestrated the development of an interactive science demo booth for children during Cal Poly’s open house weekend. At UCLA, she was president of the Organization for Cultural Diversity in Science (OCDS), a graduate student led group that promoted diversity in STEM through an invited speaker seminar series, community outreach programs and mentoring programs. Upon the completion of her Ph.D., Crystal co-founded a 501(c)(3) non-profit corporation that advocates for inclusivity within the STEM community through a national network called the Alliance in Diversity in Science and Engineering (ADSE). She is also an Associate of the Committee on Minority Affairs (CMA) within ACS.