CSR Announces 2nd Class of its Fellowship for Ending Bioweapons Programs

The Council on Strategic Risks (CSR) has accepted a diverse group of 5 professionals, servicepeople, and innovators into the 2021-22 class of its Fellowship for Ending Bioweapons Programs.

Together, through mentorship and exchanges of ideas with key leaders in the field, the CSR team will facilitate the Fellows in exploring wide-ranging ideas that governments, nonprofits, or other organizations could pursue for addressing the rapidly evolving space of bioweapons threats. The Fellows and CSR team will help deepen the biorisk community’s understanding of motivations for bioweapons programs, and foster creative ideas and options for the use of technologies, international cooperation, and engagement of non-traditional actors for the purpose of reducing biological weapons risks.

Given the success of the inaugural class of CSR Fellows in everything from producing thought pieces on biological weapons to applying knowledge they gained during the fellowship to public service, CSR is excited to welcome these five immensely talented people to form its 2021-22 class:

Lt Nicolette Chimato is an active duty Officer in the United States Marine Corps where she is trained in three different military occupational specialties to include Communications, Information Operations, and Psychological Operations. Prior to joining the service, she worked at Mayo Clinic in Jacksonville, Florida as a Statistical Programmer Analyst where she had the opportunity to work with and learn from not only some of the best in the field of medicine and its accompanying research, but also the intentional leadership present throughout the organization. Nicolette will be attending Georgetown University as part of the Fall 2021 cohort of students in pursuit of a Master of Science in Biohazardous Threat Agents and Emerging Infectious Diseases. Nicolette hopes that the fellowship will provide her with not only the ability to advise Commanders and policy makers in and out of the service, but also that she will be able to advocate for informed decision-making as our world becomes increasingly more complex.

Jonathan Frist is a Director of Business Development at Ginkgo Bioworks, where he focuses on Concentric by Ginkgo, a pandemic response and biosecurity business unit. Prior to that Jonathan spent 10 years in the U.S. Government, holding leadership positions in Washington DC, Africa and the Near East with the State Department and the Intelligence Community. He holds a Bachelor of Arts in International Relations and Middle Eastern Studies from Vanderbilt University and is completing an Executive Master of Business Administration (MBA) from Georgetown University, McDonough School of Business.

Daniel Gastfriend is currently the Director for Biodefense at the White House National Security Council. From March 2020 to April 2021, he served on the federal COVID-19 response, where he launched and co-led the Data Strategy and Execution Workgroup, an interagency team of more than 100 members from over a dozen federal agencies that coordinates data and analysis efforts across the whole-of-government COVID-19 response. He is on detail from the National Security Programs office at the U.S. Office of Management and Budget, where he covered a $6 billion portfolio including the State Department’s Global Health Programs and the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative. Prior to working in the federal government, Daniel was a visiting scholar at the Johns Hopkins Center for Health Security, where he researched strategies to accelerate medical countermeasure surge manufacturing to combat catastrophic pandemics. He previously worked as a management consultant with Bain & Company in South Africa and as a policy consultant with IDinsight in Uganda and India. He holds a Master in Public Administration in International Development from the Harvard Kennedy School and a Master of Business Administration from the Harvard Business School, where he was a Baker Scholar. He received his Bachelor of Arts from the Princeton School of Public and International Affairs. He is a Truman Scholar.​

Anjali Gopal is a Ph.D. candidate in the UC Berkeley – UCSF Graduate Program in Bioengineering. Her research interests are at the intersection of microfluidics, single-cell analysis, and computational biology. Previously, she worked as a bioinformatics technician in a yeast genomics laboratory at the University of Toronto, and as an Engineering Intern at Baylis Medical. Anjali is actively interested in emerging technology policy, and aims to leverage her scientific training for pandemic preparedness and bioweapons prevention initiatives. She has a Bachelor’s of Applied Sciences in Nanotechnology Engineering from the University of Waterloo.

Dr. Jaspreet Pannu is a resident physician at Stanford University where she treats patients and completes research with an infectious diseases & global health focus. She received her M.D. from Stanford School of Medicine and B.Sc. in Biology with first-class honours from McGill University. She previously worked on machine learning and artificial intelligence tools for healthcare at Google AI, and has worked on biosecurity policy at the Future of Humanity Institute, Oxford University. Most recently, she worked with the Bipartisan Commission on Biodefense to outline their recommendations in The Apollo Program for Biodefense – Winning the Race Against Biological Threats report.


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