The Sabin Vaccine Institute’s leadership team is comprised of a diverse group of global health, development and international relations experts.
Bruce Gellin, M.D., M.P.H.
Brian Davis, CPA
Janet Daniels, MBA
|Jennifer Fluder, MBA|
Director, Global Community Engagement
|Denise Garrett, M.D., M.Sc.|
Vice President, Typhoid Programs
Tara Hayward, M.A.
Stacey Knobler, M.Sc.
Roxana Rustomjee, M.B., Ch.B., FCPHM, MMed, Ph.D.
Aruna Sampath, Ph.D.
Vice President, Project Management
|Mary Beth Woodin, MBA, M.P.H.|
Vice President, Communications
Chief Executive Officer
Amy Finan was appointed as the chief executive officer of the Sabin Vaccine Institute on April 18, 2016. In her time as CEO, Amy has led the development and implementation of a strategic plan focusing Sabin on a mission to make vaccines more accessible, enable innovation and expand immunization across the globe.
Prior to joining Sabin, Amy served as senior vice president responsible for business development at the Biotechnology Innovation Organization (BIO), the world's largest membership organization representing biotechnology companies, academic institutions and state biotechnology centers.
During her 11-year tenure at BIO, Amy played a critical role in expanding the organization’s membership and revenue base and implementing innovative approaches to fundraising, branding, marketing and programming. In 2011 and simultaneous with her BIO responsibilities, she also served as president of the Biotechnology Institute, an organization founded by BIO in 1998 to promote life science education.
Prior to BIO, Amy led corporate communications and investor relations for the former clinical-stage biotechnology company EntreMed Inc. Between 1999 and 2001, she created and implemented the biotech initiative of Montgomery County, Maryland, which included economic development policies, incubator programs, legislative packages and communication plans. Amy began her life sciences career as a government relations director for the National Association of Biomedical Research.
Amy studied at the London School of Economics & Political Science and graduated with a bachelor’s degree in political science from Trinity College in Washington, D.C. A native of Columbus, Ohio, Amy has lived in the Washington, D.C., metropolitan area for more than 30 years and currently resides in Bethesda, Maryland, with her family.
Bruce Gellin, M.D., M.P.H.
President, Global Immunization
Dr. Bruce Gellin joined the Sabin Vaccine Institute as the inaugural president of Global Immunization in March 2017. Prior to joining Sabin, Bruce served as the Deputy Assistant Secretary for Health and Director of the National Vaccine Program Office at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), where he was the principle technical, strategic and policy advisor to the Assistant Secretary for Health on all aspects of the National Vaccine Program.
In this role, Bruce served as a technical and policy advisor to the World Health Organization, focusing on influenza vaccines and global issues of vaccine hesitancy. In addition, he represented the U.S. government on the research and development focus of the Decade of Vaccines Collaboration and led the pandemic influenza preparedness and response activities of the Global Health Security Initiative.
At HHS, Bruce was responsible for developing the National Vaccine Plan, our country's blueprint for all aspects of vaccines and immunization. He also coordinated government-wide efforts on seasonal influenza and the corresponding opportunity to strengthen the adult immunization system in the United States. In 2005, he led the creation of HHS’s first pandemic influenza preparedness and response plan. Later, during the 2009 influenza pandemic, he led the U.S. team that donated H1N1 vaccine to other countries, expanded the nation’s vaccine safety monitoring system, and coordinated interagency efforts on vaccine development, supply and distribution.
Prior to joining HHS, Bruce founded and served as executive director of the National Network for Immunization Information, worked as a medical officer at the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, served as Epidemic Intelligence Service officer at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and was a Luce Scholar in the Philippines. Bruce’s global health work includes consulting for Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance, chairing the World Health Organization’s Global Action Plan for Influenza Vaccines Advisory Group, working with the Children’s Vaccine Initiative, and serving as a Warren Weaver fellow at the Rockefeller Foundation. He is one of the nation’s principle spokespersons on vaccines and immunizations and has served as on the faculty at Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, Columbia University’s Mailman School of Public Health and Vanderbilt University Medical School. He recently was appointed to Georgetown University Medical Center’s Department of Medicine as an adjunct professor in the Division of Infectious Diseases.
In 1991, Bruce earned a master's degree in public health in epidemiology from the Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health. He is a graduate of Weill Cornell Medical College and was a Morehead Scholar at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He completed his internship and residency in internal medicine at Vanderbilt University and later was a preventive medicine resident at Cornell and at the CDC’s Arctic Investigations Program in Anchorage, Alaska. Bruce achieved board certification in internal medicine and infectious diseases, is an active member of numerous professional organizations, and serves as a peer reviewer for over a dozen medical journals.
In 2016, the Infectious Diseases Society of America awarded Bruce with the Society Citation in recognition of his work in the field of infectious diseases, and in 2015, he was bestowed the honor of the American Medical Association’s Nathan Davis Award for Outstanding Government Service for his leadership and vision while overseeing our nation’s vaccine and immunization initiatives.
Bruce and his family have lived in Washington, D.C., for the past 15 years.
Brian Davis, CPA
Chief Operating Officer
Brian Davis has worked with the Sabin Vaccine Institute since 2005 and has served as its chief operating officer since 2008. Prior to joining Sabin, Brian owned an established accounting practice in Washington, D.C. that served the non-profit sector in areas of life science, education, economic development and low-income housing. Brian holds CPA certificates in Maryland and the District of Columbia as well as a bachelor's degree in business administration with a major in finance from Michigan State University, and is a member of the American Institute of CPAs.
Maria Bianchi is the director of Administration at the Sabin Vaccine Institute where she manages office operations. After traveling to Niger, Maria joined Sabin based on its mission to make a difference in the lives of the world’s children regardless of who they are or where they live.
Prior to joining Sabin in 2009, Maria worked as the Operations Manager for RegNet Environmental Services for 13 years. Since 2005, she has served the Girl Scouts as a Service Unit Manager, Encampment Chair, Money Manager and Recognitions Chair in addition to being a scout leader for over a decade. Maria graduated from the State University of New York at New Paltz with a bachelor’s degree in Elementary Education with a major in English and a minor in art.
Janet Daniels is the director of Accounting at the Sabin Vaccine Institute, where she is responsible for managing all accounting activities, preparing monthly and annual financial statements, managing actual versus budgeted spending, and providing financial information to management and program directors.
Janet has more than 25 years of experience in the field of accounting. Prior to joining Sabin in 2009, Janet was the controller at MENTOR/The National Mentoring Partnership, where she was responsible for managing all accounting functions. Janet has a master’s degree in business administration from St. Louis University and a bachelor’s degree in business administration with an emphasis in finance from the University of Missouri, Columbia.
Director, Global Community Engagement
Jennifer Fluder currently serves as the director of Global Community Engagement of the International Association of Immunization Managers at Sabin. Before Sabin, Jennifer served as the Innovation Team lead and senior partnership advisor in the Global Health Bureau at the United States Agency for International Development (USAID). She led USAID's innovation investments in the Ebola and Zika crises, launched one-of-a-kind partnerships with Facebook, GlaxoSmithKline and DuPont, and developed multi-donor strategy and community of practice for unmanned aerial systems in global health.
Jennifer has also worked at two national healthcare nonprofits in development and strategy, focusing on program development for patients and donors, as well at Edelman PR in brand experience and corporate social responsibility for private sector companies. She has pursued several global health fellowships in Kenya, South Africa and India with Innovations in Healthcare, OperationASHA, Jacaranda Maternal Health and Ubuntu. Jennifer has a master’s degree in business administration from Duke University’s Fuqua School of Business specializing in social entrepreneurship in global health.
Denise Garrett, M.D., M.Sc.
Vice President, Typhoid Programs
Dr. Denise Garrett joined the Sabin Vaccine Institute in August 2015 to lead Sabin's work on typhoid. She serves as Director of the Coalition against Typhoid Secretariat and leads a large surveillance project to help determine the burden of typhoid in Asia. Denise received her medical training in Brazil with special focus on infectious diseases, including typhoid fever.
Before joining Sabin, Denise worked at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) for 23 years, where she focused on international health and epidemiologic research, leading several multicenter research studies. During her tenure with CDC, Denise led several multicenter infectious disease studies in developing and developed countries. Denise brings extensive experience collaborating with international governments, multilateral agencies, universities, private sector, non-governmental, and global health organizations to expand infectious disease control and prevention, and outbreak response programs around the world.
Vice President, Resource Development & Policy
Tara Hayward is vice president of Resource Development and Policy at the Sabin Vaccine Institute. She oversees fundraising and public policy activities supporting Sabin’s work to improve lives through immunization. With more than a decade of experience in non-profit fundraising, she has led Sabin’s efforts to secure funding from governments, foundations, corporations and high net worth individuals since 2010.
Prior to joining Sabin, Tara served as the manager of development for the International Women's Media Foundation, where she was responsible for creating and managing the infrastructure and operations of annual giving, foundation and corporate fundraising, and special events. Her prior experience also includes working for the United Nations Population Fund in Bosnia and Herzegovina and serving in the Peace Corps in Romania.
Tara holds a master’s degree in international development from the University of Denver in the Josef Korbel School of International Studies and a bachelor’s degree from DePauw University, where she majored in English writing.
Director, Influenza Vaccine Innovation
Stacey Knobler joined Sabin in 2018 to lead an initiative dedicated to accelerating the development of a universal influenza vaccine. Stacey has more than 20 years of experience as a global health and development professional, with expertise in research, program design and implementation, and strategic planning. She previously served as a Senior Adviser and Scientific Program Director for multiple large-scale initiatives for the Division of International Epidemiology and Population Studies at the Fogarty International Center (FIC), within the U.S. National Institutes of Health (NIH).
Stacey has been recognized for her leadership of research and outreach activities that have effectively engaged stakeholders from multiple sectors, integrated numerous academic disciplines and translated scientific findings for application within a broad range of communities. Stacey has received numerous awards for outstanding achievement and distinguished service to the U.S. Institute of Medicine and the National Academy of Sciences, as well as the FIC Director’s Outstanding Service Award and the FIC Director’s Special Award for Mentorship. She has over 40 professional publications and has served on the editorial review committees of several public health and infectious disease journals. Stacey is currently the President of the Board for the American Friends of the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine. She received bachelor’s degrees in molecular genetics and political science from the University of Rochester in New York, and master’s degrees in epidemiology and public health from the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine.
Senior Vice President, Research & Development
Roxana Rustomjee joined the Sabin Vaccine Institute as the senior vice president of research & development as of November 2019. She is a leader in the global health community and is committed to ensuring that people in low- and middle-income countries have access to vaccines. Throughout her impressive 20-year career as an infectious disease physician and clinical epidemiologist, Roxana has led teams of researchers, governments, private sector and non-governmental organizations worldwide to develop vaccines, drugs and diagnostics and move them closer to patients. She has served as the principal investigator of multiple research grants and led strategic product development partnerships with the private sector and government funding agencies.
Roxana has extensive experience effectively managing large, multi-country teams to accelerate biopharmaceutical product development and licensure. She has led global clinical trial networks across five continents, conducting trials in most countries with a high burden of infectious diseases as senior scientist at the Tuberculosis Clinical Research Branch within the Division of AIDS at the U.S. National Institutes of Health. Roxana has supported the development and introduction of new vaccines, therapeutics and diagnostics for infectious diseases as head of the Office of HIV and Tuberculosis Research at the South African Medical Research Council, and she has delivered innovative trial designs for a novel tuberculosis vaccine in her role as senior director of clinical strategy in the BioSciences Division of Emergent Biosolutions UK/USA.
Using her experience addressing the needs and challenges of low- and middle-income countries, Roxana has taken a prominent role in defining health policy and translating research to advocate for change. She has served on a number of expert working groups with the World Health Organization, USAID and others, and on boards including that of The Biologicals and Vaccines (Biovac) Institute of Southern Africa (Proprietary Limited), where Roxana helped steer this relatively new public-private partnership to build a portfolio of more than 10 different vaccines and ultimately to supply South Africa with more than 25 million doses of vaccines annually.
Partnerships have been foundational to Roxana’s success. She has successfully organized, won and managed large multi-centered international grants with collaborators from governments, universities, private sector, non-governmental, and global health organizations.
Roxana is an infectious disease physician with a degree from the Nelson R. Mandela School of Medicine at the University of KwaZulu-Natal South Africa. She received her doctorate in epidemiology from Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health in New York. Roxana has published more than 60 peer-reviewed publications.
Vice President, Project Management
Aruna Sampath leads the project management of Sabin’s vaccine development programs. Aruna comes to Sabin with more than 20 years of experience in product development of vaccines and therapeutics. Prior to joining Sabin, Aruna held various leadership positions at Emergent BioSolutions Inc., Unither Virology, LLC, Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority, Walter Reed Army Institute of Research, and Novartis Institute for Tropical diseases (Singapore). Aruna’s expertise lies in oversight of programs from discovery through preclinical, Phase 1 through Phase 3 clinical programs, as well as manufacturing of vaccines and therapeutics. Aruna received her bachelor’s degree in biochemistry at the University of Delhi in India, her master’s degree in biotechnology at Madurai Kamaraj University in India and earned her doctorate in biochemistry from University of Delhi.
Vice President, Communications
Mary Beth Woodin joined Sabin in 2018 to lead communications for the organization, with a focus on advocacy for a universal influenza vaccine. Mary Beth is a scientist, communications professional and public health advocate with more than 20 years of targeted communications experience in the life sciences, including global health. Most recently, she was a Principal Associate at Abt Associates, where she was the global project director of HealthRise, a project designed to expand access to care for non-communicable diseases among underserved populations in Brazil, India, South Africa and the United States. Prior to that, she was the External Relations and Communications Director for the Global HIV Vaccine Enterprise, where she created and led a comprehensive communications program for the Enterprise’s scientists, funders, and potential partners. Mary Beth also ran her own health communications agency, MBK Associates, for more than 17 years, specializing in strategic communications services for a portfolio of global clients, from nonprofits to pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies.
Mary Beth has expertise in basic science, diagnostics, and drug development. She has been responsible for phase I through phase III clinical trials, including pharmaceutical regulatory submissions. Mary Beth began her career as a bench scientist, using her bachelor’s degree in microbiology from University of Massachusetts at Amherst. She also earned a master’s degree in business administration in international business from Bentley University and in 2014, she earned her master’s degree in public health from New York University.