Meet our Champions

Society Champions help raise the profile of the Microbiology Society in their local area. They do this by initiating activities and events of their own, or participating in Society-led events.

Find out more about the Champion(s) in your local area:


Nicola Crewe (University of Lincoln, UK)

© Nicola Crewe

Nicola is a Senior Lecturer at Lincoln University and has been a Champion since day one. She is a strong advocate of promoting microbiology widely among undergraduates from all relevant disciplines. Currently she is based in the National Centre for Food Manufacturing on the Holbeach campus, and as such, works closely with a wide range of industrial partners within the food industry. The majority of students enrolled on courses within the school are apprentices working in the food industry and carrying out their studies as part-time distance learners. She is also involved in a number of research projects that involve both academic and industrial collaborators. Recently she was appointed to the Professional Development committee, and is involved in developing the “Teaching Microbiology in Higher Education” symposium that will be taking place at the Annual Conference in 2019.

“Microbiology is a critical part of the development and success of the food industry, not only to ensure that products are safe for the consumer, but also to limit the loss through spoilage. Our students are aware of microbiology within their workplace, but often to a limited extent. Being able to support them in their growing understanding of this field of science is a real joy, and many tell me that my teaching sessions provide them with a desire to find out more about the impact of microbiology within their discipline. Collaborating with industrial partners both in the context of supporting their staff and working to enhance their processes through research projects is an exciting opportunity”

Contact Nicola at

Lisa Crossman (University of East Anglia, UK)

© Lisa Crossman

Lisa is currently on the MinION access program (MAP), trialling the new Oxford Nanopore sequencer. Having undertaken an undergraduate degree in Microbiology at the University of Bristol, and a masters in Molecular Genetics at the University of Leicester, Lisa has a lot of microbiology experience. She has been working in genomics, computational biology and bioinformatics since 2002, and currently works as a consultant based in the Norwich Research Park.

"I love Bacteria, but also have a soft spot for Archaea, Viruses and Fungi!"

Contact Lisa at

Eyinmisan Nikatsekpe (John Leggott College, Lincolnshire, UK) 

Eyinmisan works at the John Leggott College in Scunthorpe. Contact Eyinmisan at

Alicia Russell (John Innes Centre, Norwich, UK)

Alicia is at the John Innes Centre, Norwich. Contact Alicia at

Danny Ward (John Innes Centre and University of East Anglia, UK)

© Danny Ward

Danny Ward is a PhD student at the John Innes Centre and the University of East Anglia in Norwich, England.

He is researching in the field of molecular microbiology where he is focusing on understanding how certain bacteria are able to infect their hosts. He aims to better understand the type III secretion system and a new regulatory mechanism associated with it. The type III secretion system is tiny biological machinery which looks and acts like a needle. It is what certain bacteria use to infect us humans as well as animals and plants.

Outside of the lab, Danny takes part in a variety of science communication and outreach events to help spread awareness and appreciation of science and his research.


Arikana Massiah (Barts Hospital, London, UK)

Arikana is also a member of the Professional Development Committee.

Contact Arikana at

Sreyashi Basu (University College London, UK) 

© Sreyashi Basu

Sreyashi is a third-year undergraduate student at UCL.

"I believe that the in-depth study of microbes will help us acquire more innovative techniques towards sustaining life on earth, and as a part of the microbiology society I am prepared to help educate the public of the opportunites that this field brings to modern science."

Contact Sreyashi at or

Winnie Lee (Imperial College London, UK)

© Winnie Lee

Winnie is an MRes student at Imperial College London.

"I am currently an MRes student enrolled on the MRes Biomedical Research course at Imperial College London. My current research focuses on generating pseudomonas knockouts in genes that are involved in glucose metabolism, a regulation that can be disrupted in bacterial lung infections. Understanding microbes and their behaviour enables the development of new technologies to treat disease and on behalf of the Microbiology Society, I am excited to network with scientists across different fields and adopt a multi-disciplinary approach to help raise awareness in order to improve public health."

Contact Winnie at


Anja Dokic (University of Birmingham, UK)

Anja is in the School of Biosciences at the University of Birmingham.

Contact Anja at

Magdalena Karlikowska (University of Warwick, UK)

Magdalena, a PhD student at the University of Warwick, is keen to raise the profile of the Society amongst other students. She is also involved in outreach activities as part of her STEM Ambassador role.

Contact Magdalena at

Alice Lanne (University of Birmingham, UK)

Alice is in the School of Biosciences at the University of Birmingham.

Contact Alice at

Ruth Nottingham (University of Nottingham, UK)

© Ruth Nottingham

Ruth is a fourth-year PhD student.

"Being part of the DTP PhD scheme at Nottingham has created lots of opportunities to be in contact with other microbiology PhD students. The DTP management promotes contact between over a hundred PhD students in different year groups within the whole of biological sciences. This new system provides peer support throughout the PhD process and gives me the opportunity to engage with PhD students with a microbiology backgroubnd, and promote the Society."

Contact Ruth at

Colman O'Cathail (University of Nottingham, UK)

© Colman O'Cathail

Colman graduated with a BSc in Biomedical Science from UCD in 2015 and an MRes from the University of Nottingham in 2016. He is currently enrolled as a BBSRC funded PhD student at the University of Nottingham working bovine tuberculosis surveillance and reporting.

"Reading about the role and responsibilities of a Society Champion, I found that it appealed to me immensely as a way to get involved in the Society."

Colman is also a member of the Early Career Microbiologist’s (ECM) Forum Executive Committee and a Finance & Operations Committee Representative.

Contact Colman at

© Vicky Smith

Vicky Smith (University of Nottingham, UK)

Vicky is a second year BBSRC-funded PhD student based at the University of Nottingham. Her research uses archaea to decipher the importance of replication origins in DNA replication in archaea.

“Being a Champion allows me to share my enthusiasm about microbiology with others. It is a great opportunity and it makes me feel really involved with the Society.”

Contact Vicky at

Marwa Hassan
© Marwa Hassan

Marwa Hassan (University of Warwick, UK)

Marwa is a Postdoctoral Researcher at University of Warwick, UK. She works on biofilms of polymicrobial communities in cystic fibrosis and studies antimicrobial resistance in bacterial populations in cystic fibrosis. Marwa received her PhD from the University of Queensland, Australia, where she worked on developing culture-independent bacterial detection methods for quick identification of bacterial sepsis and antibiotic persistence. She is passionate about microbes, science communication and teaching.

Contact Marwa at: @DrMarwa_Hassan or

Ethan Iles (Chesterfield Royal Hospital, UK)

Ethan works in the laboratories of the Chesterfield Royal Hospital. Contact Ethan at

Saba Amir (Nottingham Trent University, UK)

Saba is at the School of Animal, Rural and Environmental Sciences, Nottingham Trent University. Contact Saba at

Carl Aston (University of Nottingham, UK)

Carl is at the Centre for Biomolecular Sciences, University of Nottingham. Contact Carl at

Nathan Ashley (ALS Laboratories, UK)

Nathan works at ALS Laboratories, Shrewsbury. Contact Nathan at

Northern Ireland 

Linda Oyama (Queen's University Belfast, UK)

© Linda Oyama
Linda has a Microbiology degree, and a PhD in Molecular Microbiology. She is currently a research fellow at Queen's University Belfast and a member of Women in Science, with a passion for sharing and increasing science participation. She is also involved with the Widening Science Participation Unit (Spectroscopy in a Suitcase) at Aberystwyth University in Wales.


Contact Linda at

Chris Proctor (Ulster University, UK)

© Chris Proctor

Chris is currently a PhD student at the Centre for Molecular Bioscience at Ulster University, investigating new ways to inhibit biofilm formation. Chris has completed a Bachelor of Nursing degree (Cardiff University) a BSc in Biotechnology (Ulster University) and an MRes in Translational Medicine, focusing on infection and immunity (Queen’s University Belfast). Chris enjoys public engagement, especially communicating new scientific ideas to specialists and non-specialists alike. He is eager to help promote the Society through public event, as well as internal events within Ulster University and he would welcome collaboration with other members of the society. 

Contact Chris at

Lindsay Broadbent (Queen's University Belfast, UK)

"In my research centre there is a large number of researchers working with bacteria and viruses. I think I am well placed to encourage people to join the Society and engage with Society events."

Contact Lindsay at

Yinka Somorin (Queen's University Belfast, UK)

© Yinka Somorin

Yinka is a young motivated early career scientist with a strong passion for public engagement and policy activities to promote microbiology.  His research interests include molecular diagnostics development, understanding the molecular mechnanism of bacterial survival and persistence in different ecological niches and food safety.  He currently works as a Research Fellow in the Halo Research Group within the School of Pharmacy at Queen's University Belfast.

Contact Yinka at

Daniel Storey (Queen's University Belfast, UK)

Daniel is at the Wellcome Wolfsen Institute for Experimental Medicine, QUB. Contact Daniel at

Georgiana Parau (Queen's University Belfast, UK)

Georgiana is at the Wellcome Wolfsen Institute for Experimental Medicine, QUB. Contact Georgiana at

Sara Pidcock (Queen's University Belfast, UK)

Sara is at the School of Biological Sciences , QUB. Contact Sara at

Mairead Connor (Queen's University Belfast, UK)

© Mairead Connor

Mairead has a degree in Biological Sciences and a PhD in Microbiology. She is currently a Research Fellow at Queen's University Belfast with researching the pathogenesis of human and animal pathogen Clostridium difficile, investigating the genetically diverse strains found causing infection globally.

Republic of Ireland 

Nathaniel Cole (Maynooth University, Ireland)

Nate is a third-year Biological and Biomedical Sciences undergraduate in Maynooth University. He joined the Microbiology Society to develop his professional skills and help promote student engagement in his university. He has a keen interest in biology and hopes to continue an academic career in environmental microbiology.

Contact Nate at

Sinead Corr (Trinity College Dublin, Ireland)

Sinead is actively engaged with both undergraduates and postgraduates, helping to promote microbiology within the college and further afield too.

Contact Sinead at

Gerard Sheehan (Maynooth University, Ireland)

© Gerard Sheehan

Gerard is in his final year PhD in the Medical Mycology Laboratory at Maynooth University in Ireland. His research examines the interactions between fungal pathogen and their host and how they respond to each other. He dabbles in broad areas of microbiology from biofims in beer lines to viral infections of honey bees. He particularly loves sharing his research and can't wait to move from PhD to postdoc and get immersed in a new project.

Contact Gerard at


North West

Maria Afonso (University of Liverpool, UK)

© Maria Afonso

Maria is based at the Institute of Infection and Global Health at the University of Liverpool. She is busy preparing a series of talks to staff and students, as well as organising a panel discussion on microbiology careers.

Contact Maria at

Kate Baker (University of Liverpool, UK)

Kate is a Wellcome Trust Clinical Research Career Development Fellow.

Contact Kate at

Angharad Green (University of Liverpool)

© Angharad Green

Angharad is a postdoctoral research associate at the University of Liverpool, and is another enthusiastic science communicator.

"I believe becoming a Microbiology Society Champion would be a fantastic opportunity for my career development and I would be able to use my enthusiasm for microbiology to raise the profile of the Society."

Contact Angharad at

Chloe James (University of Salford, UK)

Chloe is a Champion based at the School of Environment and Life Sciences at the University of Salford.

Contact Chloe at

Hannah Gibson (Newcastle University, UK)

I studied Cellular and Molecular Biology BSc (Hons) at Newcastle University from 2015 to 2018. I am currently a PhD student at Newcastle University. I am keen to use my role as Champion as an opportunity to share my passion for microbiology.


Katherine Duncan (University of Strathclyde, UK)

© Katherine Duncan

Katherine is a Chancellor’s Fellow and Lecturer in Marine Natural Products Drug Discovery and started her own research group in Glasgow in 2016. Her group uses comparative omics methods to discover antibiotics from marine microorganisms. As a Microbiology Society champion, Katherine is keen advocate for early career researchers and women in science leadership.

Contact Katherine at

Zoe Leckie (University of Glasgow, UK)

Zoe is a Society Champion based in Glasgow.

Contact Zoe at

Elizabeth Wignall-Fleming (MRC-University of Glasgow Centre for Virus Research)

Elizabeth is a Society Champion in Glasgow.

Contact Elizabeth at

Sara Clohisey (The Roslin Institute, UK)

Sara is with the Roslin Institute , University of Edinburgh. Contact Sara at

Kirsty Robb (University of Strathclyde, UK)

Kirsty is at the Strathclyde Institute of Pharmacy & Biomedical Sciences. Contact Kirsty at

South East 

© Laura Petch

Laura Petch (University of Kent) 

Laura is a current PhD student and Graduate Teaching Assistant in Kent Fungal Group at the University of Kent, under the supervision of Mick Tuite. Her research project explores extrachromosomal regulators of phenotypic heterogeneity in Saccharomyces sensu stricto. Laura also has a passion for outreach, and as a Champion of the Microbiology Society sees great potential in promoting the world of microbiology, research and the Society as a whole – not only to undergraduates, but to younger students in relevant disciplines.

Contact Laura at  

Louisa Wallace (University of Surrey, UK)

Louisa is in the Department of Microbial Sciences at the University of Surrey.

Contact Louisa at

Matthew Herdman, (University of Oxford, UK)

Matthew is a DPhil Student reading Interdisciplinary Biosciences at the University of Oxford. Contact Matthew at

Chinyere Okoro (University of Surrey, UK) 

Chinyere is at the School of Biosciences and Medicine, University of Surrey. Contact Chinyere at

Robert Will (University of Cambridge, UK) 

Robert is a PhD student in the University of Cambridge Department of Medicine, supervised by Professor Gordon Dougan and Dr Ankur Mutreja. He is part of the MRC DTP, after graduating with a BSc (Hons) in Biology from Swansea University in 2018. He is researching the genomic variations and epidemiology of Corynebacterium diphtheriae, and is really interested in science communication and how science impacts policy. Contact Robert at

Michael Macey (The Open University, UK)

Michael is at the Faculty of Science, The Open University. Contact Michael at

South West 

Nigel Brown (retired, previously University of Edinburgh)

Nigel is in “active retirement” having worked in several universities and at BBSRC. He lives in west Wiltshire and brings microbiology (and other science) to public attention through a monthly article on science in his village magazine, talks to local groups and occasional national press interviews for the Society. He was the press contact for the Antibiotics Unearthed project.

Nigel is also past President of the Society and a member of the Professional Development Committee.

Contact Nigel at 

© Tina Joshi

Tina Joshi (University of Plymouth, UK)

Tina is a Lecturer in Molecular Microbiology who specialises in development of novel rapid point of care detection systems for antibiotic resistant bacteria and in infection control.

Tina has become a Microbiology Society Champion to promote public understanding of important microbiological issues.

Contact Tina at

© Ruth Maclaren

Ruth Maclaren (Sciencedipity, UK)

Ruth is a Biomedical Scientist and teacher who founded the Community Interest Company (CIC), Sciencedipity, based in Devon. Sciencedipity is dedicated to bringing fun and hands-on science to  children, families and educators. Ruth is passionate about creating unique hands-on workshops and lessons in all areas of science for schools, groups as well as organising her own events locally. She has run her own workshops in microbiology and was delighted to work for The Eden Project on the launch week of their Invisible Worlds Exhibit, facilitating hands on microbiology for their thousands of visitors. 

                                            Contact Ruth at


Ed Cunningham-Oakes (Cardiff University, UK)

Ed is part of the Microbiomes, Microbes and Informatics (MMI) Group at Cardiff University.

Contact Ed at

Benjamin Johns (University Hospital of Wales)

© Ben Johns

Ben is currently a Trainee Clinical Scientist (Infection Science) at the Microbiology Department of the University Hospital of Wales. Ben is also awaiting his PhD viva examination on the topic of small colony variants of Pseudomonas aeruginosa, having completed both a B.Sc. and M.Sc. in Biomedical Science (specialising in Medical Microbiology). He is passionate about science communication and raising the aspirations of young people to pursue their interests in science. As a Champion, he has set up the Microbiology Wales/Microbioleg Cymru Facebook group as a platform for young scientists through to leaders in the field in Wales to network with one another.

He is always looking for new networking and outreach opportunities, so why not get in touch? Contact Ben at

Lauren Kerr (Cardiff Institute of Infection and Immunity)

Contact Lauren at

Daniel Morse (Cardiff University, UK)

© Daniel Morse

Daniel is a PhD student in Oral and Biomedical Sciences at Cardiff University."I'm keen to promote the Society and microbiology in general through public engagement, speaker events within the university and collaborations with other universities in the local area."

Contact Daniel at

© Michael Pascoe

Michael Pascoe (Cardiff University, UK)

Mike is a final-year PhD student at Cardiff University, developing an alternative disinfection technology for medical devices. He's passionate about science outreach and is looking forward to explaining to other early career scientists the ways in which the Society can help support them in their own engagement activities.

Contact Mike at

Eleanor Furness (University of Aberystwyth, UK)

Eleanor is with the Institute of Biological, Environmental and Rural Sciences (IBERS), Aberystwyth University. Contact Eleanor at


Omololu Fagunwa (University of Huddersfield)

© Omololu Fagunwa

Omololu has a degree in Microbiology, masters in Biotechnology and is a PhD student at the University of Huddersfield. His research focuses on isolation and characterization of potential probiotics. As a theology doctoral holder, he is passionate about science communication in religious/faith setting. As a champion, he is keen about internationalisation of the society.

Contact Omololu at 

Alex Remmington (University of Sheffield, UK)

© Alex Remmington

Alex is in the Department of Molecular Biology and Biotechnology, The Florey Institute for Host-Pathogen Interactions, at the University of Sheffield. 

"I am a doctoral researcher at the Florey Institute for Host-Pathogen Interactions at the University of Sheffield, investigating the contribution of lysogenic bacteriophage to the pathogenesis of Group A streptococcal infections in the laboratory of Dr Claire Turner. I obtained a BSc (Hons) in Biological Sciences at the University of Brighton, before completing an MSc in Medical Microbiology at the University of Manchester. I am passionate about diversity and equality in science and education, science policy, raising the status of microbiology and infectious diseases in the public mind and red pandas. In my spare time, I enjoy reading about true crime, listening to Stevie Nicks, and catching up on other areas of microbiology."

Contact Alex at

Lee Sherry (University of Leeds, UK)

"I am keen to increase the awareness and opportunities presented by the Microbiology Society."

Contact Lee at


Ikbal Agah Ince (Acıbadem University, Turkey)

© Ikbal Agah Ince

Agah is an Associate Professor and Principal Investigator at the university, in Istanbul. In addition to his R&D activities, he enjoys organising itnernational training courses, entrepreneurial/partnership meeting organisations and symposia on special topics of interest to medical microbiologists. He focuses on understanding of the complexity of microbe–host interactions, applying systems biology approaches to provide the scientific basis for the development of novel biostrategies and designing of bioprocesses of products of a wide spectrum of interest in bioindustry.

Contact Agah at or

Ayman Ahmed (Sudan)

Contact Ayman at 

Sagar Aryal (St Xavier's College, Nepal and Kathmandu Center for Genomics and Research Laboratory (KCGRL), Nepal)

Sagar is a keen educator.

"I want to tell people that we can do a lot in Microbiology which will make an impact on society, the community and the nation."

Contact Sagar at

Marilia Costa (Paraiba State University, Brazil)

© Marilia Costa

Marilia is Lecturer at Paraiba State University. She became a Champion in her second year at the University of Dundee, where she undertook her PhD, because she could see new students coming into the university who knew nothing about the Society, and wanted to do something about it.

"We need more interaction with the Society to help spread the word."


Arindam Mitra (Adamas University, India)

© Arindam Mitra

Arindam Mitra is currently Associate Professor and Head in the Department of Microbiology at Adamas University. He earned his Ph.D. from University of Maryland, USA and a former post-doctoral researcher at Arizona State University, USA. He works with students to help raise awareness of Microbiology across the schools within the university. Dr. Mitra’s research interest is focused on a) development and regulation of natural, industrial and clinical biofilms b) development and evaluation of veterinary vaccines & c) isolation and characterization of novel enzymes from environment.

Contact Arindam at

Manoj Pradhan (Nepalese Army Institute of Health Sciences, Nepal)

© Manoj Pradhan

Manoj is a Medical Laboratory Technologist for the Department of Microbiology at the Nepalese Army Institute of Health Sciences. His job requires him to instruct and conduct various laboratory practical classes and sessions of MBBS and Nursing students about clinical microbiology.

Contact Manoj at

Alya Redhwan (Princess Nourah University, Saudi Arabia)

© Alya Redhwan

“I am an Assistant Professor in the College of Health and Rehabilitation, Department of Health at Princess Nourah University (PNU) in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. I am also a founder and the coordinator of the Microbiology and Immunology Unit at the Health Sciences Research Centre (HSRC), PNU. As a young scientist, I am passionate about research, and its related aspects; I dream of establishing my own pipeline in research and having my own research team. As such, I am very much interested in creating strong links of international scientific cooperation”.

Contact Alya at

Bauyrzhan Tashmukhambetov (Kazakh National Medical University, Kazakhstan)

Bauyrzhan works with medical staff and students across the university.

Contact Bauyrzhan at

Nilay Joshi (Unique Pharmaceutical Laboratories, India)

Nilay is proactive and resourceful professional with significant experience in managing a range of quality assurance procedures and ensuring adherence to cGMP standards. He is currently serving as team leader - Microbiology for finished product release. He works with the industry, regulatory agencies and other external science based organizations. He is member of PDA and ISPE.

“I am an industrial microbiologist, I spend most of my days trying to understand - microorganisms and product quality. As a group leader of sterility assurance department I am passionate about microbiology. For me it fun to coordinate the impact of the microorganism on sterile or non sterile products, patients and even the inanimate environments.

For any opportunities or networking purpose, feel free to connect with me through LinkedIn or mail me at I would welcome the opportunity to explore the possibility of our association."

Jinxin Zhao (Monash University, Australia)

Jinxin is at the Department of Microbiology, Monash University. Contact Jinxin at

Maria Davis (University of Regina, Canada) 

Maria is at the University of Regina, Saskatchewan. Contact Maria at

Gayetri Ramachandran (Institut Imagine, Paris, France)

© Gayetri Ramachandran

Gayetri is a postdoctoral researcher at Institut Imagine, Paris, where she works as a microbiologist in an immunology lab with Dr. Pamela Schnupf and Dr. Nadine Cerf-Bensussan since last October. Here she is trying to understand the methylation pattern of a gut-inhabiting bacterium with the purpose of modifying it to ultimately produce vaccines with it. Contact Gayetri at



Ofonime Ogba (University of Calabar, Nigeria)

Ofonime is a Medical Laboratory Scientist with a PhD in Medical Microbiology/Parasitology. She is a faculty member in the Department of Medical Laboratory Science, Faculty of Allied Health Sciences, University of Calabar. Her research interest is in medical microbiology, specifically respiratory fungal infections among HIV/AIDS and other Immunosuppressed patients and human mycoses.

Thiru Vanniasinkam (Charles Sturt University, NSW, Australia)

Thiru is a Senior Lecturer and leads the Medical Science Discipline Group in the School of Biomedical Sciences, Charles Sturt University, NSW, Australia. Thiru teaches microbiology and immunology courses to undergraduates in a range of programs such as B. Med Science, B. Food and Nutrition, B. Pharmacy and B. Animal Science, and mentors Masters and PhD students in microbiology related research projects. Thiru has a keen interest in microbiology education and is involved in a range of outreach and mentoring activities promoting microbiology in the local community.

Interested in becoming a Champion for the Microbiology Society? Find out more today.