Diversity in Life Sciences

Initiatives to Enhance Diversity, Equity & Inclusion in Science


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Amanda Marie James, PhD
Chief Diversity Officer & Associate Dean
Emory University

Amanda Marie James received her BS in Biochemistry from Spelman College in Atlanta, GA, and her PhD in Clinical Pharmacology from the University of Alabama at Birmingham. She has been both formally and informally trained in diversity and inclusion work. As a mentor, a course facilitator, and diversity outreach advocate and coordinator, Dr. James has worked on developing an environment, which fosters advancements while providing the needed resources for ALL learners to be successful.


Her traditional scientific training is in clinical technology (pharmacological and application-based) and biomedical engineering, with specific training and expertise in the detection of clinical samples and method development. As a graduate trainee at UAB, she developed and validated mass spectrometry methods for the detection and quantification of two different antiretroviral drugs. Her current research interests focus on the identification of encapsulated and nonencapsulated circulating microRNAs as biomarkers for coronary atherosclerosis. She is specifically interested in the frequency/abundance of coronary atherosclerotic isomiRs, (isoforms of microRNA) and their correlation to clinically relevant outcomes based on race and co-morbidities of coronary atherosclerosis.


The skills she learned as a translational scientist have been applicable to her role as an administrator. Her familiarity with the journey has been priceless to help facilitate the acclimation of diverse scholars and their navigation of a large university and global city. Currently, Dr. James serves as the inaugural Chief Diversity Officer and Associate Dean for Diversity, Inclusion, and Community Engagement in the Laney Graduate School at Emory University.

Mentor: Lynda M.  Stuart, MD, PhD

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