Dr. Chris Gunter is the HudsonAlpha director of research affairs. She earned a bachelor’s degree in both genetics and biochemistry from the University of Georgia, and a Ph.D. in genetics from Emory University. Her research was centered on human genetics and genomics. Chris has also earned publishing experience at several journals, including editorial positions at Human Molecular Genetics and Science, and as the editor for genetics and genomics manuscripts at Nature. Upon starting to publish genome papers at Nature in 2002, Chris told her boss that if they ever got the platypus genome published, it would be time to move on. She started at the nonprofit HudsonAlpha Institute for Biotechnology in 2008 and coordinates research activities in genetics and genomics. She creates and maintains an academic environment and communicates HudsonAlpha’s research in a variety of different formats and public venues. Chris also holds adjunct appointments at three universities, is an editor of the blog Double X Science, and currently serves on the Program Committee and as the chair of the Communications Committee for the American Society of Human Genetics. For probably too much info, see her @girlscientist on Twitter. I know how this sounds, but it’s true: I chose to go into human genetics because I wanted to help people. An early-onset case of alopecia, or patchy hair loss, left me wanting desperately to be “normal.” I vowed to seek out a cure and to end people’s suffering – yes, yes, all of those melodramatic teenage vows. My teenage-hood is long gone, but I still believe in the promise of human genetics to aid in discovery of both cause and treatment for everything from single-gene to complex disorders.