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Portrait of Sarah Smith

Sarah E. Smith

Project Manager, Office of Scientific Leadership

Stowers Institute for Medical Research

B.S., Physics, Truman State University
Ph.D., Molecular and Integrative Physiology, University of Kansas Medical Center

Courses Taught

Science Communications


Sarah E. Smith, Ph.D., serves as the Project Manager for the Office of Scientific Leadership at the Stowers Institute. Collaborating closely with the President, Scientific Director, and Chief of Staff, she plays a key role in the implementation of programs that advance the Institute's overarching mission.

A native of Kansas City, Smith joined the Stowers Institute after completing her Bachelor of Science in Physics at Truman State University in Kirksville, Missouri, in 2005. She conducted her graduate research under the mentorship of Dr. Rong Li, focusing on the biophysics of cell polarization, and earned her Ph.D. in Molecular and Integrative Physiology in 2013. Following her doctoral studies, Smith assumed the role of Scientist in the Microscopy Technology Center, where she developed a deep knowledge of Stowers Institute research through extensive collaboration with Institute scientists. 

An expert in cell biology, biophysics, advanced imaging, and computational analysis, she has coauthored 18 peer-reviewed research publications on topics ranging from the molecular structure of the microtubule organizing center in yeast to the interaction of the immune system with cancer stem cells. She transitioned to her current role in April 2022.

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