Dr. Yong-Kyu Kim is currently Research Professor in the Department of Genetics, University of Georgia, Athens, GA, USA. He is expert in population and behavior genetics. He graduated with a B.S. from Sung Kyun Kwan University, Seoul, Korea, and his interests in Behavior Genetics started with studies concerning the Drosophila mating behavior and speciation. He got a M.S. from Sung Kyun Kwan University and University of California, Irvine. He moved to New York where he became an American citizen, and studied the Drosophila reproductive behavior under the direction of Professor Lee Ehrman, and he received a Ph.D. from the City University of New York (1994). During his postdoctoral training with Lee Ehrman, he extended his research into the endocrinological and neurobiological aspects of Behavior Genetics. He has been a pioneer in documenting effects of social learning on Drosophila mate recognition and speciation. Dr. Kim served as a curator of the National Drosophila Stock Center in Bowling Green, OH (1996-97), and introduced Behavior Genetics to the University of Georgia, Athens, GA in 1998 where his course has been popular and open to several majors including psychology. Collaborating with several evolutionary geneticists for projects funded by NIH and NSF, he has investigated genetic and psychologic bases for behaviors prefacing and securing reproduction, and published many times in first rate journals. Dr. Kim has frequently contributed to the BGA, organizing several symposia, and editing the journal, Behavior Genetics. Serving as an Associate Editor, he has brought many papers on animal behavior to our journal. Very recently he has edited the Handbook of Behavior Genetics (2009), collaborating with internationally known psychologists, psychiatrists, and geneticists. This anthology will contribute to endeavors in Behavior Genetics for decades. He is a co-author of the 3rd edition of Behavior Genetics and Evolution with Lee Ehrman and Steve Maxson; and would be honored to serve as President of the BGA. If elected, he would like to expand the BGA membership by organizing more symposia and workshops of compelling interests to both animal and human behavioral geneticists.
Stephen C. Maxson received his Ph.D. in Biopsychology from the University of Chicago in 1966. His doctoral research was guided by Benson E. Ginsburg. Steve joined the faculty of the University of Connecticut in 1969 where he is currently Professor of Psychology. His research to 1975 was focused on genetic, neural and pharmacological aspects of spontaneous, febrile, and audiogenic seizures in mice. Since 1975, he has been investigating the genetics of aggression and mating in male mice. He was the first to prove that there is an effect of the Y chromosome on aggressive and mating behaviors in male mice. For this, he developed a unique set of Y chromosomal congenic strains. Subsequent research concerned interactions of the Y chromosome and autosomes in the development of male mouse aggression, the role of the opponent and chemosignals in effects of the Y chromosome on male mouse aggression, the role of testosterone in genetic effects on male aggression, and the involvement of the X and Y chromosomes in sex differences for mouse aggressive and mating behaviors. In the 1990s, he was a Guest Professor at the Universities of Bielefeld and of Ulm where he collaborated on the expression of Y chromosomal genes in mouse brains. This research showed that the Y chromosomal gene, Sry, is expressed in male mouse brain. Also, while on sabbatical in 1986 at the University of South Carolina, he investigated the evolution of repeat DNA sequences on the murine Y chromosome. He is currently involved in a project to screen for chemically induced and chromosome specific mutants with effects on male mouse aggression and has been intensively characterizing one such mutant that may be on the X chromosome. Steve is a Fellow of the International Society for Research on Aggression, and he was an elected member of its governing Council for 2005 to 2008. Since 1998, he has been an Associate Editor of Behavior Genetics, and he is the representative of the Behavior Genetics Association to the AAAS Committee on Biological Sciences for 2002-10. In 1998, he was the recipient of the Dobzhansky Memorial Award for a Lifetime of Outstanding Scholarship in Behavior Genetics, and of the Excellence Award for Research of University of Connecticut Chapter of the AAUP. He has been a member of the Behavior Genetics Association since its inception in 1971, and he has attended thirty-two of its annual meetings. He was the Local Host for our 2006 meeting at the University of Connecticut. Steve is highly honored to be nominated for President. He believes that as President, he could facilitate the return of much more fly, mouse and other animal research to the Behavior Genetics Association and its annual meetings and foster through our Association a greater integration of animal and human behavior genetics. He would also like to have the Association involved in critical analysis of the presentation of behavior genetics in text books and of the findings of behavior genetics as presented in the news media.
Irwin D. Waldman is Professor in the Department of Psychology at Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia, where he has been on the faculty since the fall of 1991. He completed his undergraduate education with a B.S. in Human Development and Family Studies at Cornell University, and his Ph.D. in Psychology from the University of Waterloo in 1988 with a specialization in Clinical. Following this, he completed an NIMH postdoctoral fellowship at the University of Minnesota where he worked with several faculty, including Matt McGue, Sandra Scarr, and Rich Weinberg. His primary research interests are the causes, classification, and development of children’s disruptive disorders and behavior problems, which include Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, Oppositional Defiant Disorder, Conduct Disorder, aggression, and antisocial behavior. In collaborations with colleagues using samples from around the world, his research has employed quantitative genetic methods to disentangle and characterize genetic and environmental influences on these behavior problems, and molecular genetic designs to test for association between these disorders and candidate genes that underlie neurotransmitter function. Waldman has co-authored over 100 articles and chapters, and is co-editor of The Cambridge Handbook of Violent and Aggressive Behavior. He has been PI on an NIMH-funded career development award focusing on a candidate gene study of childhood disruptive disorders, and Co-PI and co-investigator (in collaboration with Ben Lahey) on a twin study of the Basic Dimensions of Child and Adolescent Psychopathology and a genetically-informative family study of the Genetic Epidemiology of Youth Conduct Problems. Waldman has been a Visiting Professor at the Centre for Social, Genetic, and Developmental Psychiatry Research in London, a Visiting Faculty Scholar at the Henry A. Murray Research Center at Harvard, a Visiting Professor at the Institute for Behavioral Genetics in Boulder, and a Visiting Scientist at the Psychiatric and Neurodevelopmental Genetics Unit, Center for Human Genetic Research, Massachusetts General Hospital and the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard. He has served as a reviewer on the Behavior Genetics and Epidemiology Study Section (BGES) at NIH, was a member of the task force on Social, Legal, and Research Implications of Behavioral Genetics for the American Society of Human Genetics in 1995 and 1996, and is an Associate Editor of Behavior Genetics and is on the editorial boards of Development and Psychopathology, The Scientific Review of Mental Health Practice, and the Journal of Abnormal Child Psychology. He has been a member of the Behavior Genetics Association since 1989 (and has attended each of the annual meetings since) and was a Member-at-large of the Executive Committee from 1998 to 2000. Dr. Waldman would be honored to serve the Association again as President, and if elected would seek to strengthen connections with individuals and organizations involved with psychiatric and statistical genetics and to build bridges between behavior geneticists using human and animal samples.
Alex Burt first heard about behavioral genetics in an undergraduate Brain and Behavior class at Emory University. She was very intrigued by the power of genes in human and animal experiences, and quickly signed up to work as a research assistant in Irwin Waldman’s research lab. She went to graduate school at the University of Minnesota, working with Matt McGue, Bill Iacono, and Bob Krueger, and completed her PhD in 2004. She currently works as an assistant professor in the Department of Psychology at Michigan State University. Her research interests center on the roles of genes, environments, and gene-environment interplay in the development of childhood conduct problems. She directs (along with Kelly Klump) the newly-established Michigan State University Twin Registry, a large-scale registry of child and adolescent twins designed to examine genetic, environmental, and neurobiological influences on the development of internalizing and externalizing symptoms. With funding from the NIMH, she is now collecting data in 500 child twin families to examine gene-environment interplay in childhood conduct problems. Additional projects include a NIMH funded study to consider dynamic interrelationships between ovarian hormones and disordered eating, and a molecular genetic study of evocative gene-environment correlations. She very much enjoys the collegial and intellectually stimulating climate of the Behavior Genetics Association, and always looks forward the annual meetings. She is honored to have been nominated for Member at Large of the BGA, and promises to work as hard as she can on behalf of the organization and its members!
Dr Angelica Ronald completed her PhD in quantitative genetics in 2005 at the Social Genetic and Developmental Psychiatry (SGDP) Centre at the Institute of Psychiatry, supervised by Professor Robert Plomin. During her PhD she carried out twin analyses on cognitive ability, behaviour problems and autistic traits. Her thesis focused on multivariate analyses of autistic traits. Following her viva, she spent the next two years as a postdoctoral researcher at the SGDP Centre carrying out quantitative and molecular genetic research into autistic spectrum conditions, funded by Autism Speaks and mentored by Dr Francesca Happé. She is now a Lecturer at the Centre for Brain and Cognitive Development within the School of Psychology at Birkbeck College in London. She has been an active member of BGA since 2002 and has attended BGA every year but one, winning the Thompson award in 2006. Her research aims to elucidate the genetic and environmental causes underlying autistic spectrum disorders and related conditions, by combining quantitative genetic and molecular genetic approaches with methodology from cognitive psychology and developmental neuroscience. She is delighted to have been nominated for Member at Large status within the committee.