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MalariaGEN Community Team grows

Meet the newest members of the MalariaGEN Community Team.

News 21 Sep 2022

Stock image illustration of a series of people in lab coats
Since our administration moved to the Wellcome Sanger Institute in 2021, the team supporting the MalariaGEN community has expanded significantly. With four additional staff joining the Community Team in 2022, we are better placed than ever to strengthen our community with training, communications, partner collaboration, and support.

“I’m thrilled about our growing team,” says Vikki Simpson, Head of Strategic Partnerships and Engagement. “We’ve essentially tripled our human resources and added much-needed skills. I’m excited to see the ways that we can grow the MalariaGEN network and strengthen the relationships that make it so successful.”

Meet the newest members of the team:

Paballo Chauke

Training Coordinator

What is your role with MalariaGEN?

I support training and engagement in malaria genomic epidemiology and genomic surveillance for both partners and the wider MalariaGEN community.

What are you most excited about?

I am excited to get to know the people in our amazing network. Everyone I’ve met so far has such fascinating stories and they’re all so engaged in science at all different levels.

What is a surprising fact about you?

I love writing! I am a regular contributor to the Mail & Guardian, a newspaper in South Africa. I’ve written about COVID, malaria, music, my own experiences, and wildfires.


Lucy Drummond

Community Development Assistant

What is your role with MalariaGEN?

I connect with partners to provide support for processes such as study setup and data releases. I am always happy to answer queries!

What are you most excited about?

I am excited about getting to meet members of the wider MalariaGEN community and learning about the latest malaria research.

What is a surprising fact about you?

I love music and I play the saxophone!


Jon Farrow

Communications Officer

What is your role with MalariaGEN?

I support all aspects of MalariaGEN communications. That means writing articles for the website (like this one!), managing our social media accounts, curating the newsletter, and creating any other bits and pieces as necessary. I’m new to malaria research, but I’m a seasoned science communicator who loves to learn about new areas of science.

What are you most excited about?

I’m excited to meet the members of our network and get their stories out. Portraying science accurately is important to me, but so are the human stories that bring research to life.

What is a surprising fact about you?

I once helped smuggle a towel to the International Space Station for the Royal Institution’s Christmas Lectures.


Julia Jeans

Community Development Assistant

What is your role with MalariaGEN?

I work to develop our relationships with new and existing MalariaGEN partners to maximise the breadth and strength of the research from the MalariaGEN community.

What are you most excited about?

The rapid global growth of capabilities in terms of sequencing and subsequent analysis and the positive implications this will have in endemic regions.

What is a surprising fact about you?

Before working at MalariaGEN in the UK, I spent a decade in the highlands of northern Ethiopia setting up and running a lodge in one of the most spectacular landscapes that you will ever find.