Leadership Team

HudsonAlpha leadership works to make the vision of our co-founders come to life by promoting the development of research-driven discovery, enterprise and creating a genetically-literate society.

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Director, Greening the Southeast NSF Development Engine

Sam Jackson, PhD

Sam Jackson

Sam Jackson joined HudsonAlpha in April as Director of the Greening the Southeast (GSE) initiative, a National Science Foundation (NSF) Engines development award.

In this role Jackson leads efforts to build a coalition of research, development and commercialization partners across the region to secure NSF Regional Innovations Engines funding. Future funding through the NSF Engines program would support the advancement of the biobased economy in the region, specifically products derived from perennial grass crops for use in the automotive, building materials, and packaging industries.

Jackson joins HudsonAlpha with more than 20 years of experience in the production of sustainable biomass crops and the use of those materials in bioproducts. He spent the last 15 years at Genera, a Tennessee-based company focused on sustainable plant-based packaging and biobased products that regenerate the earth.

Jackson held various leadership positions at Genera, most recently serving as vice president of Feedstocks and Supply Chain. During his tenure there, he helped build the nation’s leading biomass feedstock supply chain to supply a variety of industries. Before Genera, Jackson held a research appointment at the University of Tennessee, and he still serves as an adjunct faculty member for UT’s Center for Renewable Carbon.

Originally from West Virginia, Jackson earned his PhD in Natural Resources from the University of Tennessee.

Chief Operating Officer

Danny Windham

Danny Windham is the chief operating officer at HudsonAlpha. He joined the Institute in 2019 and has more than 20 years of leadership experience, serving as president and COO at Adtran (2005 – 2007) as well as CEO at Digium (2007 – 2018). Windham is actively involved in the entrepreneurial community and has supported the development of multiple startups. He also has a strong commitment to giving back to his community and serves on multiple boards including the Huntsville/Madison County Chamber of Commerce, Biztech and Leadership Alabama. He was also chairman of the Madison YMCA fundraising committee and a volunteer pilot for Angel Flight, a nonprofit organization that provides free air transportation for individuals with any legitimate, charitable, medically related need. Windham earned his BS in Electrical Engineering from Mississippi State University, where he was named a Distinguished Engineering Fellow in 2001, and MBA from Florida Tech.

Vice President for Economic Development

Carter Wells

Carter Wells joined HudsonAlpha in 2009 and leads Economic Development at the Institute with the founders’ vision of innovation, collaboration and impact, at the forefront of mind.

HudsonAlpha’s Economic Development mission is driven by the overarching goals of growing the biotech presence on the Institute’s campus and throughout north Alabama; leveraging the HudsonAlpha ecosystem for entrepreneurs, start-up companies and small businesses; and generating economic impact to local, state and regional stakeholders.

Wells and the Economic Development team work to recruit companies for expansion and relocation; encourage and support entrepreneurs to start and grow biotech companies; connect talented and driven people for collaboration; and find proven and creative ways to overcome barriers to success for HudsonAlpha associate companies.

Wells and the Economic Development team build and strengthen relationships with various community and governmental stakeholders. In addition to these responsibilities, Wells directs the work of HudsonAlpha’s Operations team.

Today, over 1,000 people work on the HudsonAlpha campus, which is home to the Institute’s non-profit genomic research laboratories and over 45 biotech companies.

Wells brings to the role a diverse wealth of experience, having served as CEO of iCubate, a molecular diagnostics company from 2010 to 2020. Under his leadership, iCubate achieved FDA clearances and CE marks on comprehensive bloodstream infection diagnostic tests; entered into successful international licensing and joint venture agreements and made initial integration into the U.S. clinical microbiology market.

Wells serves as a District Chair and Board Member for the Business Council of Alabama and is a member of the Redstone Community Relations Committee. He is an executive committee and board member, and past chair of BioAlabama. He has served as a board member for the startup incubator BizTech and the Huntsville-Madison County Public Library. Prior to joining HudsonAlpha, Wells served as Chief of Staff for U.S. Representative Bud Cramer.

Wells is married to Juliet Hettinger Wells and together they have three wonderful children.

Senior Director of Operations

Gregg Tyree

Gregg Tyree is the senior director of operations at HudsonAlpha. He joined the Institute start-up team in October 2007. In his role, Tyree is responsible for all property management, including leasing, construction, cafe/vending, Environmental, Health and Safety (EHS), security, material/inventory management and furnishings. He earned his BS in business from Athens State University and his MBA from Florida Institute of Technology. Tyree is Certified in Production and Inventory Management (CPIM) and is also a Certified Facility Manager (CFM). Tyree is a member of The Building Owners and Managers Association (BOMA) and also serves on the board of directors for the North Alabama Chapter of the International Facility Management Association (IFMA) and on the board of directors for the Community Free Clinic of Huntsville.

Co-Director of the HudsonAlpha GSC

Jeremy Schmutz

Jeremy Schmutz co-directs the HudsonAlpha Genome Sequencing Center (HGSC) and also a faculty investigator. He joined the Institute in 2008. In 1996, he joined the Stanford Human Genome Center where he and his group finished and assembled the human sequence of chromosomes 5, 16 and 19 for the Human Genome Project. He also led the quality assessment of the human genome sequence that evaluated the accuracy and completeness of the final human genome sequence. He earned his BS in computer science and a BA in biology from North Central College in Naperville, IL. Click here to read Schmutz’s faculty profile.

Director of Information Technology

Scott Ross

Scott Ross is the Director of Information Technology at HudsonAlpha. He leads the operations and strategy of technology and cybersecurity to help further the missions of HudsonAlpha. Ross has over 15 years of technology experience across defense and commercial sectors He earned his B.S. in Information Systems Management from Auburn University, is an active member of the Alabama CIO Association and Certified Information Systems Security Professional (CISSP).

Director of Student Experiences

Dasi R. Price

Dasi R. Price joined HudsonAlpha in 2013. She develops and delivers genomics and biotechnology content to students, teachers, and the public at-large. Dasi has a particular passion and emphasis on increasing the learning experiences and opportunities through student-focused programs for the K-12 audience.

Before joining the Institute, Dasi served as an adjunct professor and a classroom teacher. As an educator and leader, she often mentors’ students pursuing science careers, previously serving as an advisor for students in the Alabama Junior Academy of Science Gorgas Scholarship program.

Dasi earned her Educational Specialist (Ed.S.) degree in Secondary Curriculum from the University of Alabama-Birmingham in 2009. Her thesis was on teacher professionalism. She holds a Class AA professional educator certification in secondary Biology.

Dasi has served on numerous state education committees, as well as, civic and community boards. Her interests lie in is addressing the critical issues in access and equity across the state.

Director of Human Resources

Catrina Paseur

Catrina Paseur serves as Director of Human Resources at the HudsonAlpha Institute for Biotechnology, where she’s worked in a variety of HR roles since 2016. Her duties include planning the Institute’s organization’s mission, values, talent acquisition and retention strategies, leading the Institute’s Human Resources department, and ensuring legal compliance. Catrina is an active member of the national and local chapters of the Society of Human Resource Management (SHRM and NASHRM) and a graduate of Athens State University with a bachelor’s degree in Business Management. She and her family live in Arab.

Director of Software Engineering

Scott Newberry

Scott Newberry is the Director of Software Engineering team at HudsonAlpha Institute for Biotechnology where he leads a team of software developers, informatics architects and health informaticists. Scott has been with HudsonAlpha for more than 11 years and his team has been instrumental in developing software to analyze genomic and clinical datasets to support the interpretation of genomic data. Scott is a graduate from Auburn University with degrees in Software Engineering and Applied Mathematics.

Clinical Lab Director

Ghunwa Nakouzi, PhD, FACMG

Ghunwa Nakouzi joined the HudsonAlpha Clinical Services Lab as remote associate director in 2018. Nakouzi received her PhD in Genetics from Case Western Reserve University in 2009. She completed her clinical fellowship training at University Hospitals-Cleveland Medical Center and is board certified in clinical molecular genetics and clinical biochemical genetics. Until recently, Nakouzi maintained her biochemical genetics experience by serving as assistant medical director of the Biochemical Genetics Lab at the Cleveland Clinic. Nakouzi has experience in both molecular and biochemical genetic clinical assay development and validation. Her dual-specialty empowers her with knowledge in a wide array of genetic disorders and with the ability to correlate results from molecular and biochemical tests to reach more accurate diagnoses for patients.

Chief Scientific Officer, President Emeritus and Faculty Investigator

Richard M. Myers, PhD

Richard M. Myers, PhD, is Chief Scientific Officer, President Emeritus, M. A. Loya Chair in Genomics, and Faculty Investigator at the HudsonAlpha Institute for Biotechnology. In addition to providing strategic oversight for the research enterprise at HudsonAlpha, Myers continues to conduct research using genomics tools and genetics to understand how changes in gene expression contribute to human health and disease, as well as to basic biological processes. Myers is a native of Selma, Ala., and joined the Institute in 2008. He brings 35 years’ experience in genetics and genomics to the position. Myers previously directed the Stanford Human Genome Center, one of the first U.S. human genome centers, pioneering the next generation sequencing techniques that are elemental to the field today. Under Myers’ direction, the Stanford Human Genome Center contributed more than 10% of the data in the public Human Genome Project’s efforts to sequence the human genome. Myers earned his BS in biochemistry from The University of Alabama and PhD in biochemistry from the University of California at Berkeley. Click here to view Myers’s faculty website.

Director of Workforce Development

Michele Morris

Ms. Morris serves as the Director of Workforce Development for Educational Outreach at HudsonAlpha Institute. She joined the Institute in 2009. Ms. Morris is responsible for building a pipeline of activities and learning opportunities to support workforce needs in genetics, genomics, and biotechnology. She directs the BioTrain Summer Internship program, multi-week programs for high school students, and a bioinformatics research program for undergraduates, Characterizing Our DNA Exceptions (CODE). These programs are designed to inspire and motivate students to pursue careers in science and persist in achieving that goal. She earned a BA in Communications from Winthrop University, a BS in Biological Sciences from the University of Alabama in Huntsville (UAH) and is a doctoral candidate in Biotechnology Science and Engineering at UAH.

Director of Planned Giving and Major Gifts Officer

Jeff Moore

Jeff Moore joined the Institute in 2020. As a member of the advancement team, he leads annual and planned giving programs at HudsonAlpha. Jeff works with both individual and corporate donors in order to understand their philanthropic goals, while connecting them to HudsonAlpha’s mission. He is also responsible for employee giving. Moore has over 30 years of experience in both the for-profit and nonprofit sectors. He holds a B.S. in Human Resources Management from Ball State University.

Director of HudsonAlpha Wiregrass

Dean M. Mitchell

Dean M. Mitchell is the past Executive Director of the Dothan Area Chamber of Commerce. In this position he was responsible for the overall operations of the chamber and supported the President on projects related to economic and community development and workforce development. Prior to joining the chamber, Dean served as Chief of Staff and Communications Director for two U.S. Congressmen where he lead in the fields of management, strategic planning, communications, and problem solving.

Dean is a graduate of the Institute of Organizational Management, Dothan 101, Leadership Dothan, Leadership Alabama, has received his Alabama Accredited Chamber Executive certification, and was named the 2022 Chamber Professional of the Year for Alabama. He is past Chairman of the Board of the Chamber of Commerce Association of Alabama, past Chairman of the Board at Visit Dothan, Chairman of the Board of the Local Workforce Council, on the board of the Business Council of Alabama and has served as Chairman of the Board of Southeast AlabamaWorks. Dean is a graduate of the University of Georgia. He and his wife, Maggie, have three sons.

Chief Financial Officer

Chris Matl

Chris Matl joined HudsonAlpha in 2024 and has more than 30 years of financial experience. He spent the last 25 years at Medtronic, with his last nine years there serving as the global medical device company’s CFO initially in their Coronay/ Renal Denervation Operating Unit and during the past four years for its Aortic Business Unit. Matl is a former U.S. Marine with multiple achievements, including the Navy Achievement Medal with Combat “V” for his performance during Operation Desert Storm. A native of Fort Worth, Texas, he earned his Bachelor’s degree from Marquette University and a Master’s in Finance from Southern Methodist University.

Director of Educator Professional Learning

Madelene Loftin

Madelene Loftin is a veteran of 14 years in the classroom as a Biology teacher in Jackson, Mississippi, where she received several teaching awards including the Milken Educator Award (2007) and Outstanding Biology Teacher Award for Mississippi (2008). Mrs. Loftin also served as a teacher/coach, working with other educators to improve the quality of science instruction for all students. Moving to Huntsville in 2009, she joined the Educational Outreach team for the HudsonAlpha Institute for Biotechnology where she currently serves as the Director of Educator Professional Learning. Loftin has also served in multiple leadership roles in science education. Most recently she served as the Region VI Coordinator for the National Association of Biology Teachers (NABT) and as the Membership chair the Alabama Science Teachers Association (ASTA).

Director of Communications

Adam Kelley

Adam Kelley serves as HudsonAlpha’s Director of Communications where he provides leadership for the Institute’s communication strategy including public affairs, media relations and integrated marketing communication services.

Kelley joined HudsonAlpha in 2022 from Children’s of Alabama and has more than two decades of strategic communication specialization with broad experience in a variety of fields including healthcare, education and private business. He earned degrees at the University of Alabama and Auburn University and is a member of the Public Relations Society of America (PRSA) and the Southern Public Relations Federation (SPRF).

Senior Director of Advancement

Elizabeth Herrin

Elizabeth Herrin serves as the Senior Director of Advancement at HudsonAlpha. She joined the Institute in 2007 and is a member of the advancement team for the HudsonAlpha Foundation. Herrin works with individual and corporate donors to achieve their philanthropic goals and connect them with HudsonAlpha’s mission of improving health and well-being. In addition, she manages two of HudsonAlpha’s annual fundraising events, the Spring Benefit and the Tie the Ribbons luncheon, and leads the Ambassador program. Herrin worked in the for-profit sector prior to coming to HudsonAlpha. Her experience includes working for Nortel Networks as a senior manager in Organizational Development, as well as the Walt Disney Company where she worked in marketing and promotions. Herrin earned her MBA from Vanderbilt University.

Co-director of the HudsonAlpha GSC, Faculty Liaison and Loretta Purdy Spencer Chair in Genomics

Jane Grimwood, PhD

Jane Grimwood, PhD, serves as the faculty liaison at HudsonAlpha and co-directs the HudsonAlpha Genome Sequencing Center (HGSC). Grimwood was named Loretta Purdy Spencer Chair in Genomics in 2022. She joined HudsonAlpha in 2008. In 2000, Grimwood was a senior scientist at the Stanford Human Genome Center where she and her group were responsible for finishing and performing quality analysis on the 320 million base pairs of human chromosomes 5, 16 and 19, comprising more than 10 percent of the human genome. Grimwood earned her PhD in microbiology from the University of Leeds in the United Kingdom. Click here to view Grimwood’s faculty website. Click here to view Grimwood’s faculty website.

Vice President for Educational Outreach

Kelly East, MS, CGC

Kelly East, MS, CGC, is the Vice President for Educational Outreach. She supports multiple mission areas throughout the institute to expand the application of genomics through research, education and patient care. East joined HudsonAlpha in 2008. Prior to joining the Institute, she gained clinical experience as a genetic counselor in an oncology setting. East is a member of the genomic health leadership team and helps to drive strategy, direction and ultimately lay the groundwork for successful collaborations. She received a Bachelor of Science in Microbiology from Auburn University and a Master of Science in Genetic Counseling from the University of North Carolina – Greensboro.

Director of Clinical Education / Director of The Smith Family Clinic

Meagan Cochran, MS, CGC

Meagan Cochran, MS, CGC, is the Director of Clinical Education for HudsonAlpha and the Director of The Smith Family Clinic for Genomic Medicine. She leads a team of genetic counselors that supports multiple mission areas throughout the institute to expand the application of genomics through research, education and patient care. Cochran joined HudsonAlpha in 2015. Prior to joining the Institute, she practiced clinical genetic counseling in a variety of specialties including pediatrics, prenatal, adult medicine, and genomics. She received a Bachelor of Science in Zoology from Auburn University and a Master of Science in Genetic Counseling from the University of Alabama at Birmingham.

Director of Entrepreneurship Programs

Alex Cate

Alex Cate is the Director of Entrepreneurship Programs at HudsonAlpha where he supports tenant company business growth, technology commercialization and the development of the Institute’s entrepreneurial ecosystem. Cate works with both HudsonAlpha faculty entrepreneurs and associate companies located on campus to help and identify resources for venture growth.

HudsonAlpha’s Economic Development mission is driven by the overarching goals of growing the biotech presence on the Institute’s campus and throughout north Alabama; leveraging the HudsonAlpha ecosystem for entrepreneurs, start-up companies and small businesses; creating opportunities for collaboration and for genomic services; and generating economic impact to local, state and regional stakeholders.

Legal Affairs & Compliance Officer

Michael Bryan

Michael Bryan is the legal affairs and compliance officer at HudsonAlpha. He joined HudsonAlpha in 2014 and provides counsel and guidance on all legal and risk matters and advice to the Institute on ethics and compliance-related issues, requirements, and best practices. Bryan is a member of the Alabama bar and a Certified Compliance and Ethics Professional. Prior to joining HudsonAlpha, he was the research affairs compliance officer at the University of Alabama in Huntsville, served 11 years as general counsel to an Alabama telecommunications company and Family Office of associated companies, and worked in private practice. While in private practice, he also served as a deputy attorney general under Alabama Attorneys General Sessions and Evans. Bryan is a graduate of the University of Alabama School of Law.

Chief of Staff

Stacey Brewer, CAP

Stacey Brewer, CAP serves as Chief of Staff at HudsonAlpha and is responsible for the day-to-day operations of the Office of the President as well as providing leadership support to the Institute’s Steering Team.

Brewer joined HudsonAlpha’s Educational Outreach team in 2013 after working in the banking industry for nearly a decade. As Executive Coordinator for Dr. Neil Lamb and Administrative Team Lead for the Educational Outreach team, he oversaw all the support functions for a dynamic team of educators and science communicators.

Brewer holds a Bachelor’s Degree in business administration from the University of North Alabama and is a Certified Administrative Professional®. He is an active member of the International Association of Administrative Professionals (IAAP) and has served in numerous volunteer leadership capacities including a term as Board Chair of the IAAP Foundation.

Senior Director of Research Affairs

Flo Behn, PhD

Flo Behn, PhD, is the Senior Director of Research Affairs at HudsonAlpha. She joined the Institute in 2009. In her role, Behn leads HudsonAlpha’s sponsored projects administration office and supports activities that help secure grant funding for existing and emerging research programs. Behn also held previous positions at the Institute as the research affairs coordinator and a research scientist in the Myers Lab. She earned her BS in biology from the University of Toledo and PhD in genetics from Stanford University.


Neil Lamb, PhD

Neil Lamb, PhD, came to HudsonAlpha in 2006 with a calling to share his passion for human genetics and biotechnology with others through education. He has led HudsonAlpha’s educational outreach team from conception, creating innovative teacher training and toolkits, student experiences, public enrichment, and digital resources that have reshaped how science education is now delivered. Throughout his tenure as Vice President for Educational Outreach, Lamb has been a public ambassador for HudsonAlpha and a strategic internal advisor helping guide the Institute’s growth. In 2022, he was named President of HudsonAlpha. As President, he will now drive the strategic vision and lead day-to-day operations for the entire organization. Lamb earned his PhD from Emory University in Atlanta.