Nivatha Balendra started the research at the heart of Dispersa at the age of 17 after being motivated to find an enviromentally-friendly solution to oil contamination. She was inspired to start this work after the Lac-Megantic train crash in which millions of gallons of oil were spilled into the rural town. Nivatha collected soil samples across Montreal and began developing her research at L'Institut national de la recherche scientifique. Her work has garnered numerous scientific awards internationally and she is recognized as a sustainable leader for her work. She has also shared her work and passion for science as a keynote speaker on various stages, such as TEDx and MUSE.
Nivatha has always had one goal with her research: to develop it into a solution that can benefit society. With this in mind, she founded Dispersa in November 2018.
Sarah Martinez has completed graduate studies in biotechnology and bioprocesses engineering. She is currently pursuing her PhD in applied microbiology focusing on biosurfactant production at l'Institut national de la recherche scientifique (INRS). Sarah has over 5 years of industry experience, having worked at various biotech companies such as Sanofi and Soufflet Biotechnologies. She has always been passionate about the environment, specifically CleanTech products that can be created to deliver a solution. As such, her personal values align with Dispersa's mission and she is motivated to make a difference.
Hajar Jamshidian obtained her Ph.D. and Master degrees in Biotechnology Engineering and her Bachelor in Chemical Engineering. Her education has allowed her to develop an interdisciplinary knowledge base in bioprocess development, product recovery, optimization and economic analysis of process as well as strain improvement. Having a background in oil and gas industry, she is aware of the fossil fuel’s impact on the environment and from the beginning of her academic life, her passion has been to combine engineering concepts with biological science to find sustainable and green solutions to alleviate challenges arising from imprudent reliance on fossil fuels. Throughout her scientific journey, she has acquired valuable experiences from different research collaborations within academia and industry. These include experiences from KTH University as a visiting researcher, Concordia University as a postdoctoral fellow, and Pars Special Economic Energy Zone (PSEEZ) as an industrial consultant.
Passionate about bringing positive impact on environment and people's everyday life, Juliana has over 20 years of professional experience in startup and multinational ecosystems. She has spent her career in bringing sustainable innovations in various industries including biotechnology, clean technologies, telecommunications and semiconductors. She thrives in bringing people together, maintaining long term relationships and developing business partnerships. Work ethics, diversity, inclusion and integrity are some of her values.
Eisha Ahmed is a PhD candidate at McGill University in experimental medicine. She is passionate about both scientific research and design, and has previous experience as a freelance graphic designer, in web development, and in data analytics. Eisha believes that strong science should be accompanied with strong communication, and is working to ensure Dispersa’s message is as impactful as its technology.
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