- Category: Biosafety Heroes
- Published: 18 December 2015
The IFBA has created a Biosafety Heroes program to identify and celebrate extraordinary individuals who make significant contributions to help others in the field of biosafety and biosecurity. IFBA Biosafety Heroes are exceptional and inspiring individuals honored by the global biosafety community as having made a difference for the better. Biosafety Heroes serve as role models, showing others that each individual is important and can contribute to the global fight against infectious diseases.
Who are our Heroes?
Nominees are selected on their uniqueness, the specific accomplishments they achieved that are truly remarkable, and the impact their work has had on others. Preference is given to individuals who:
- operate in an environment where biosafety funds are limited, and/or where the importance of biosafety is not fully appreciated.
- have not yet been recognized with other biosafety awards.
Miguel Martin N. Moreno II
St. Luke’s Medical Center
Quezon City and Global City, Philippines
President, Biological Risk Association Philippines
Founding Secretary, Philippines Biosafety and Biosecurity Association
Dr. Miguel Martin N. Moreno II has been involved in strengthening biosafety and biosecurity in the Philippines for nearly a decade. He was a co-founder of the Philippine Biosafety and Biosecurity Association, and currently serves as president of the Biological Risk Association Philippines (BRAP). He contributed content to the Philippine Manual of Standards and Guidelines for Laboratory Biosafety and Biosecurity, and served as a core developer and faculty member for the Philippine Advanced Biosafety Officers Training course. He established the St. Luke’s Medical Center (SLMC) Biosafety Academy under Quality and Patient Safety, developed a full training course for it, and created and implemented a biosafety policy and an institutional biosafety committee for SLMC Quezon City and Global City. Working in cooperation with local and foreign organizations and governments he organized numerous workshops and seminars related to biosafety and biosecurity, biorisk management, emergency response, legislation, and other areas. He did these things despite often having very limited support and resources. Dr. Moreno has tirelessly traveled the Philippines, in collaboration with the Philippine Association of Medical Technologists, advocating for biosafety.
IFBA Certified Professional (Biorisk Management)
Ms. Doris Bota joined Management Sciences for Health – Kenya (MSH) under the Strengthening Public Health Laboratory Systems project (SPHLS) as a program associate-laboratory in 2011, and a year later became a Technical Advisor and was sponsored to receive biosafety and biosecurity training in South Africa. Since then, in partnership with the United States CDC and the Kenyan Ministry of Health, she has facilitated the training of over 1000 health workers across Kenya, resulting in measurable improvements in biosafety in their laboratories. She grew to become a highly effective facilitator and mentor for health care workers and other key personnel in the ministry, and served in a technical working group that produced a variety of Kenyan biosafety and biosecurity guidelines and curricula. Following the closure of the SPHLS project Doris continues to support partners and the MOH in strengthening biosafety and biosecurity. Prior to joining MSH Doris worked in South Sudan with a team of public health professionals to strengthen laboratory systems and services, with the aim of supporting and improving HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria programs. In 2016 she continued her professional development by achieving IFBA Certification as a Biorisk Management Professional. Using professionalism, energy, and tact Ms. Bota has been instrumental in documenting, disseminating and promoting best practices in biosafety and biosecurity throughout Kenya, and the region.
Harshad Vinayakrao Murugkar
Principal Scientist and Biosafety Officer
National Institute of High Security Animal Diseases
Dr. Harshad Murugkar was instrumental in founding the Society for Biosafety, India (SBS) in the late 2000s, and has been working across India and internationally to champion biosafety, biosecurity, and responsible conduct in research for over a decade. As the Founding Secretary for SBS, he teamed with leaders from the National Institute for High Security Animal Diseases and other veterinary scientists to develop a biosafety training platform and raise awareness of the importance of safe microbiological practice in India. Early SBS events he was involved in included joint WHO training programs on biosafety for scientists from across India. Since 2013, Dr. Murugkar has volunteered to lead efforts with the American Society for Microbiology (ASM) to teach fundamental topics in biosafety to Indian clinical and veterinary microbiologists. He has organized and led workshops across India, on topics including the culture of responsibility, pathogen inventory management, safe use of biosafety cabinets, and waste management. Locally led follow-up workshops subsequently took place in most Indian states, cumulatively leading to over one thousand Indian scientists being trained in biosafety. One recent role Dr. Murugkar has played was to chair SBS and ASM’s effort to create a scoreable BSL 2 checklist for biosafety and biosecurity, customized for laboratories in India, and to promote it to key Indian institutions. Dr. Murugkar has volunteered many hours of his time in these and other activities to promote biosafety across India.
• 2011 - Aamer Ikram (Pakistan), Indrawati Sendwo (Indonesia), Namazbek Abdikerimov (Kyrgyz Republic), Jean Gratz (Tanzania)
• 2012 - Siripan Wongwanich (Thailand), Edith Tria (Philippines), Dinara Turegeldieva (Kazakhstan)
• 2013 - Lela Bakanidze (Georgia), Mahama Touré (Ivory Coast)
• 2014 - José Alberto Díaz‐Quiñonez (Mexico), Atef ElGendy (Egypt)
• 2015 - T.S. Saraswathy (Malaysia), Albert Bunyasi (Kenya), Leila Macedo (Brazil)
- Nominations are welcome at any time. Once received they will be considered for at least one year.
- Winners are chosen by a selection committee (chaired by Michael Weaver, Kazakhstan) based on the criteria outlined above.
Download the IFBA Biosafety Heroes Nomination form here