This March 2022, while we celebrate Women’s History Month, we pay tribute to women whose incredible achievements have advanced science, medicine, and technology.

The National Women’s History Alliance’s theme for this year’s Women’s History Month is “Providing Healing, Promoting Hope,” emphasizing the critical role of women in public health, healthcare, and medicine during the last few years of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Discovery applauds the courageous women in history who broke through glass ceilings, thrived in the fields of science and medicine with their groundbreaking research, and continue to inspire a younger generation of girls to pursue careers in STEM industries. Our mission at Discovery is to help women succeed in the life sciences industry and support them in their professional careers.

We value our female professionals and strive to provide an environment of equal opportunity. Discovery has several specific initiatives to help our female hires grow and develop their careers with us in life sciences and are excited to unveil some of our newest initiatives for the women’s leadership program in the coming months. As of this year, females make up 50% of Discovery’s total workforce. Out of the 200+ global new hires, 71% are female.

Discovery Life Sciences celebrates with those around the world in recognition of women’s achievements and contributions throughout history to our societies, families, workplaces, and industries, especially in the areas of science and medicine. We asked some of our female leaders at Discovery who inspired them to be the women they are today.

Here’s what Rebecca Ford, Dr. Tiffany Murphy, Gudrun Bänfer, Ellen Karges, Liana Harris, and Meredith Osborn had to say…

I’ve struggled to find successful female role models in my field for most of my life. That is why it’s important to me to create a culture and business environment that promotes the advancement of women. As a mother myself, I know the challenges that women and particularly mothers / caregivers, can find themselves in as they try to balance career demands with the demands they see in their personal lives. I hope to inspire other women to follow their passion and quickly accentuate their strengths and minimize weaknesses. I’m also grateful for supportive husbands and fathers who’ve enabled and encouraged me to be my best.

Rebecca Ford
Vice President, Biospecimens

Rosalind Franklin has always inspired me for her revolutionary work that helped discover the double-helical structure of DNA. Although her work was a major contribution, Franklin’s male colleagues received most of the acclaim and were awarded the Nobel Prize in 1962. Her life was tragically cut short by Ovarian cancer at 37. Franklin’s legacy continues to inspire me and other researchers today, especially in our collective efforts toward cancer research.

Dr. Tiffany Murphy
Vice President, Global Tissue Biomarker Services

It was my mother who gave me the feeling that anything is possible and the freedom to find my own way. She also taught me to question things and analyze them to get to the root of the issues by myself. Then, in my early years at the university Prof. Friederike König, a very passionate female scientist, said “One has to learn 1000% to give 100%.” Since then, I’ve followed her advice.

Gudrun Bänfer
Head of Advance, Training & Consulting

I met Dezna Sheeshan, an acclaimed female Histology Author, early on in my career. Throughout my histology training, she always had the ability to draw a crowd with both her confidence and kindness. She always taught me to go with confidence in what you know, learn what you don’t, and share what you learn with others. It’s about the value that you bring to the table because everyone has a place. Sheeshan had a way of making you see and believe in your value in addition to the contributions you could achieve to really make a difference. I have held this “life lesson” very close to me and am very grateful for the opportunities it has given me.

Ellen Karges
Senior Vice President, Global Quality and Regulatory Affairs

My grandmother was my biggest inspiration when growing up because she inspired me to be the best version of myself, to find what ignites passion in me, and go after it wholeheartedly. She taught me in life that I never lose but always learn.

Liana Harris
Director, Global Human Resources Operations

My mom was a cardiac care specialist and instructor prior to staying home with me and my siblings. So anytime I looked above me and saw mostly men, either professionally or academically, I knew that there was a place for me because there had been a place for my mom.

Meredith Osborn
Product Manager, Biospecimens