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The Graduate School of the Stowers Institute for Medical Research
1000 East 50th Street
Kansas City, Missouri 64110
Phone 816-926-4400

William B. Neaves, Ph.D.
President Emeritus, Stowers Institute for Medical Research

Dr. William Neaves serves as President of the Graduate School of the Stowers Institute for Medical Research. Bill has extensive experience in higher education and served more than 20 years in leadership positions at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas. Bill attended Harvard where he earned degrees in biology and anatomy. Following a brief stint as lecturer at Harvard, he became an assistant professor of cell biology at UT Southwestern, where he undertook endocrinology research and directed the anatomy teaching program from 1975 to 1978, attaining full professorship in 1977. In 1983, Bill received the Young Andrologist Award of the American Society of Andrology and in 1991 was elected a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, in recognition of his work on steroid hormones. In 1980, he was named Dean of Southwestern Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences followed by appointment as Dean of the Medical School in 1986 and Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs in 1998. In addition, he held the Doris and Bryan Wildenthal Distinguished Chair in Biomedical Science during his last decade at UT Southwestern and by then was recognized for his role in building a stellar research program. During his time in administration at UT Southwestern, Bill demonstrated his commitment to faculty development, education of students and rigorous scientific and ethical standards. Bill served as President and Chief Executive Officer of the Stowers Institute for Medical Research from 2000 through 2009. He was named President Emeritus in 2010 and currently serves on the Cerner Corporation Board of Directors and on the Board of Trustees of Washington University in St. Louis.


R. Scott Hawley, Ph.D.
American Cancer Society Research Professor
Investigator, Stowers Institute for Medical Research

Dr. R. Scott Hawley is widely recognized as an expert in Drosophila genetics, chromosome biology, and meiosis. He has authored over 150 articles and seven books. Scott was elected to the National Academy of Sciences in 2011, inducted into the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 2006, and appointed as an American Cancer Society Research Professor in 2005. He has won numerous awards for his teaching, including the Genetics Society of America's award for Excellence in Education in 2008. Scott received a B.S. in Biology from the University of California at Riverside in 1975 and his Ph.D. in Genetics from the University of Washington in 1979 under the supervision of Laurence Sandler. This was followed by a Helen Hay Whitney Postdoctoral Fellowship at the Institute for Cancer Research in Philadelphia. In 1982 he joined the faculty of the Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York City and then, in 1991, he moved to the University of California at Davis as a Professor of Genetics. In 2001 he was recruited to the faculty of the Stowers Institute for Medical Research in Kansas City. Scott believes that there are three functions of a scholar: to learn, to write, and to teach. He is committed to excellence in all three pursuits.

Ana J. Pedraza, Ph.D.
Associate Dean for Academic Affairs

Ana J. Pedraza received her Ph.D. in Cell Biology from Yale University in 2007 in the laboratory of Dr. Graham Warren. She has a master's degree in Biochemistry from the Albert Einstein College of Medicine and a bachelor's degree in Biochemistry from Swarthmore College in Swarthmore, Pennsylvania. After receiving her Ph.D., Ana moved to Kansas City to pursue a postdoctoral research position in the laboratory of Drs. Joan and Ron Conaway at the Stowers Institute for Medical Research. In 2010, Ana accepted her current position. Although she has given up the bench, she has a strong commitment to fostering science through the next generation. She hopes that her broad experience in an array of research positions and institutions will be a valuable tool to help future scientists navigate their way through graduate school and the next steps of their careers.


Susan Weigel
Associate Dean for Administration & Registrar

Susan Weigel joined the Stowers Institute for Medical Research in 2000 and managed the executive office until 2010 when she was named to her current position. Prior to joining the Stowers Institute, Susan worked with the executive office and the foundation of Aventis Pharmaceuticals and its predecessor companies in Kansas City for eleven years. Susan holds a B.A. in education from the University of Nebraska at Kearney. She enjoys combining her background in education with her experience in administration to support the predoctoral researchers. 









Lori Vitale
Director of Accreditation and Compliance

Lori Vitale joined The Graduate School in 2014. It is her responsibility to serve as liaison with the state of Missouri as well as coordinate accreditation efforts. Lori holds a Bachelor’s of Journalism and a Bachelor’s of Art in History from the University of Missouri-Columbia. She has a master’s degree and an education specialist in higher education administration. Previously, she worked in higher education for 14 years at the University of Missouri-Kansas City and Research College of Nursing.








Kim Dziedzic
Administrative Coordinator

Kim Dziedzic joined the executive office of the Stowers Institute for Medical Research in 2007 and moved to her current position in 2010. Her previous experience includes four years at the Lee's Summit, Missouri School District and 17 years at Pfizer Animal Health. Kim received a B.S. in education with a concentration in Biology from the University of Central Missouri. The combination of Kim's educational and work experiences makes her a valuable resource for the predoctoral researchers.