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SNHS Board Biographies

SNHS Board of Directors

Nelson Totah, PhD

SNHS Chairman of the Board
Associate Professor of Neurophysiology and Pharmacology, University of Helsinki, Finland

Dr. Nelson Totah, PhD is an Assistant Professor in Neurophysiology and Pharmacology at the University of Helsinki. He leads the Neuronal Networks for Learning and Cognitive Control Lab ( Dr. Totah’s laboratory studies the neural code that organisms use to learn, adapt, and improve their behavior. Previously, he was a Postdoctoral Fellow (2012-2017) and then a Research Group Leader (2017-2019) at the Max Planck Institute for Biological Cybernetics in Tübingen, Germany. He has served as the Vice Chairman of the Board of Directors for the Brain Research Society of Finland since 2022. He is active in science diplomacy and serves, at the request of the US Ambassador to Finland, as the Vice-Chairman of the Fulbright Commission in Finland. Dr. Totah founded the Science National Honor Society in his hometown of Houston, Texas in 2000.

Frank Hughes
Vice-Chairman of the Board
Former Chief of NASA Space Flight Training, Texas

Biography coming soon

Dr. Chuck Hoopingarner
Treasurer / Secretary of the Board
Dentist (Retired), Texas

Dr. Hoopingarner attended the University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston Dental Branch, graduating with a DDS in 1973. He has maintained a private practice in Houston, Texas, and was an Adjunct Associate Professor in the Department of Anatomical Sciences for 11 years. He is currently in his 23rd year as an Associate Professor in the Department of General Practice. He was a Clinical Instructor at the Las Vegas Institute for Advanced Dental Studies from 1997 to 2007, teaching Advanced Anterior Aesthetics, Comprehensive Anterior Reconstruction, and Advanced Occlusion courses in a live patient educational format. Dr. Hoopingarner has authored numerous articles and lectured internationally on subjects relating to the use of lasers in providing dental care

SNHS Board Members

Dr. Sivaram Arepalli

SNHS Board Member
Professor, Rice University; Retired NASA Scientist, Houston, TX

Prof. Arepalli is a founding Board Member of Science National Honor Society. He is an Adjunct Professor in the Department of Materials and Science and NanoEngineering at Rice University, Houston, Texas. He was the former Chief Scientist of Applied Nanotechnology program at NASA Johnson Space Center. 

His current interests include synthesis and processing of Nanomaterials (including CNT, BNNT and graphene) for energy applications such as fuel cells, solar cells, batteries and supercapacitors. He also focuses on experimental and computational research for material development for subsonic to hypersonic aerothermodynamic flows in addition to aerospace structures, environmental sensors and bioimplants. He enjoys interacting with students and giving Nanotechnology focused talks.

Vickie Kloeris

SNHS Board Member
NASA, Retired, Houston, Texas

Biography coming soon.

MJ Marggraff
SNHS Board Member
Author, Pilot & Innovator, San Francisco, CA

MJ Marggraff works in space health. Her dissertation studied the risk of space isolation on well-being and performance and how to mitigate the effects by connecting astronauts on deep space missions with their family and close friends on earth. She is a co-founder of Kinoo, a startup that provides a breakthrough solution to increase connectedness between individuals on earth who live at a distance from each other as well as inspire learning and reading in children. MJ is the founder and creator of GravityGames® for Made-in-Space, Inc., which inspires and engages STEM high school and college students to innovate 0G-3D games that can only be played in 0G and printed on the International Space Station, then are played by the astronauts. 

MJ is a commercial pilot and was a certified flight instructor with a focus on teaching women to fly. “Hummer,” was her call sign, bestowed when her airplane’s mic (without her awareness) failed in flight (which allowed her singing to be heard across the skies.) In her role as a mission support representative to space agents for Virgin Galactic, MJ completed suborbital flight training that included high G-force experiences at the National AeroSpace Training and Research Center in the PHOENIX Centrifuge. MJ held a position as CapCom for the Mars Desert Research Station analog. She is currently an adjunct professor of Human Factors in Aviation and Space for the College of Business at Athens State (on-line).

Carole Nevlle
Physics and Astronomy Teacher, St. Charles, IL

Biography coming soon.

Bill Rogers

SNHS Board Member
Associate Laboratory Director, Idaho National Laboratory (retired)
Professor and Chair of Chemical Engineering, University of Washington (retired)

A native Texan, Bill moved to Idaho in 2004 as the Associate Laboratory Director for Science & Technology and Chief Research Officer at the Idaho National Laboratory.  He retired in 2017 after working 28 years as a senior research manager and scientist at three DOE National Laboratories as well as 10 years as Professor and Chair of Chemical Engineering at the University of Washington.  He also served as Director for the Center for Advanced Energy Studies in Idaho Falls, ID and Director of the Environmental Molecular Sciences Laboratory in Richland, Washington.

Bill received his PhD in Physical Chemistry and BS in Chemistry from the University of Texas.  He is a fellow of the American Vacuum Society (AVS) and the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS).

In retirement, besides interacting with TRLT he enjoys traveling abroad, skiing, hunting, and cooking Texas pit barbeque.

Joshua Rubin, MD, PhD
Professor of Pediatrics and Neuroscience and Associate Director of the Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities Research Center at Washington University School of Medicine; Co-Leader of the Solid Tumor Therapeutics Program at The Siteman Cancer Center

Joshua Rubin, MD, PhD, attended Yale University and received his MD, PhD from the Albert Einstein College of Medicine. He completed residency training in pediatrics at Boston Children’s Hospital, and a pediatric hematology-oncology fellowship at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and Harvard University where he also completed post-doctoral training in Dr. Rosalind’s Segal laboratory. He joined the faculty at the Washington University School of Medicine in 2003 where he is now a Professor of Pediatrics and Neuroscience. He founded and co-led the Pediatric Neuro-Oncology Program at St. Louis Children’s Hospital until 2020. He currently is a Co-Leader of the Solid Tumor Therapeutics Program at The Siteman Cancer Center and Associate Director of the Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities Research Center at Washington University School of Medicine. In his laboratory, he has focused on the biology of sex differences in cancer and their implications for treatment for a number of years. Specific lines of investigation include sex differences in metabolism, epigenetics, stem cell function, and responses to DNA damage. The long-term goals for his laboratory are a deeper understanding of cancer in males versus females, and how best to incorporate this knowledge to improve outcomes for all patients.

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