Joan Saluzzi-Oefner, Managing Director, International Cytokine & Interferon Society (ICIS)
Joan Oefner is honored with the 2020 ICIS Distinguished Service award in recognition for her extraordinary contributions and service to the ICIS and to the cytokine research community at large. Since she joined our Society as Managing Director in 2016, she has reached far beyond expectations to ensure the administrative, conference, and financial success of ICIS and has devoted significant time and energy to further the goals of the Society.
Joan founded her association management company in San Francisco in 1993 to support international scientific and medical societies. After moving to Germany in 2005, she found it surprisingly difficult to convince prospective new clients that a virtual business model is the most efficient and responsive way to support the missions and goals of international non-profit scientific and medical societies. Past-President Nancy Reich and the ICIS Council, however, had no issues with this concept and boldly hired Joan’s “Virtual Office”.
Joan received her Bachelor of Arts, Psychology, in 1982 from the University of Colorado, Boulder. She obtained the CAE (certified association executive) designation in November 1998 from the American Society of Association Executives. She is not a scientist but loves working with scientists and even married her favorite one, Peter Oefner, who is Chair of the Department of Functional Genomics, Institute of Functional Genomics at the University of Regensburg (thus the move to Germany).