Faculty and Academic Staff

Dr. Rebecca A. Aslakson is an Associate Professor at Stanford University with appointments in the Department of Primary Care & Population Health in the Palliative Care Section as well as the Department of Anesthesiology, Perioperative and Pain Medicine. With a Summa Cum Laude B.A. from Washington University in St. Louis, an MD from Harvard Medical School–MIT, and an MSci degree with Distinction from the University of Ulster in Northern Ireland, Dr. Aslakson completed anesthesia residency at Massachusetts General Hospital and surgical critical care fellowship at The Johns Hopkins Hospital, where she then was on faculty from 2008-2017. In 2013, Dr. Aslakson obtained her PhD in Clinical Investigations from The Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health with her dissertation concerning integration of palliative care in intensive care units. Triple boarded in anesthesia, surgical critical care, and palliative medicine, Dr. Aslakson is an active researcher and clinician; her goal is to improve delivery of palliative medicine, particularly to perioperative and critically ill populations. She has published over 60 peer-reviewed papers and chapters and received research awards from multiple national funders such as AHRQ, PCORI, the Foundation for Anesthesia Education and Research, and the National Palliative Care Research Society. Dr. Aslakson serves on national committees for professional societies including the American Academy of Hospice and Palliative Medicine (AAHPM), the American Society of Anesthesiologists (ASA), and the Society of Critical Care Medicine (SCCM). Dr. Aslakson has received national awards including the 2015 AAHPM Early Career Investigator Award and the 2014 ASA Presidential Scholar Award. Dr. Aslakson clinically attends in the Stanford Medical Center Medical-Surgical Intensive Care Unit in Stanford, CA and lives in Palo Alto, CA with her husband and two young sons.

Laurel Braitman, PhD is a Writer-in-Residence and Adjunct Professor, Department of Anesthesiology. Laurel Braitman is a New York Times bestselling author, historian and anthropologist of science. Her writing has appeared in The New York Times, The Guardian, The Wall Street Journal, Wired and other publications. Her last book, Animal Madness (Simon & Schuster 2015) was a NYT bestseller and has been translated into seven languages. She is currently a Writer-in-Residence at the Medicine & the Muse Program at the Stanford University School of Medicine where she's busy helping physicians tell better stories--for themselves and their patients. She holds a PhD in Science, Technology and Society from MIT, is a Senior TED Fellow and a Contributing Writer for Pop Up Magazine, a live magazine the New York Times has called a “Sensation.” Her work and collaborations with musicians and artists have been featured on the BBC, NPR, Good Morning America and Al Jazeera. She's taught popular interdisciplinary courses at Stanford School of Medicine, Harvard, MIT, Smith College and elsewhere and is passionate about working with musicians, physicians, scientists, animals and artists. 

As the Writer-in-Residence at the Stanford University School of Medicine, Laurel leads afternoon, daylong and multi-day workshops for medical students, residents, fellows and attending physicians. She also teaches courses, has established a live onstage storytelling series for medical students called Talk Rx, and works with students, researchers and physicians one-on-one and in small groups to develop their written and oral communication skills. Find out more about her work helping physicians communicate more easily here.

Alyssa Burgart, MD, MA is a Pediatric Anesthesiologist and Bioethicist. She earned her bachelors degree in Bioethics from the University of Judaism and her Masters in Bioethics and Health Policy from Neiswanger Institute for Bioethics at Loyola University Chicago. She co-chairs the Ethics Committee at the Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital at Stanford. Her areas of interest include pediatric bioethics, research on the practice of medicine, end-of-life conversations, and ethics in organ transplantation.

Danton Char, MD, is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Anesthesia, Perioperative and Pain Medicine at the Stanford University School of Medicine and a Pediatric Cardiac Anesthesiologist at Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital. His research focuses on ethical issues arising in the care of critically ill neonates, infants and children, particularly children with congenital cardiac disease.

Mildred Cho, PhD, Associate Director of the Center is also Professor of Pediatrics. Her major areas of interest are the ethical and social issues raised by new technologies such as genetic testing, gene therapy, pharmacogenetics, and gene patents. She also studies how academic-industry ties affect the conduct of biomedical research.

Julie Collier  Clinical Assistant Professor, Prediatrics - Rheumatology

Steven Goodman, MD, MHS, PhD, is Associate Dean of Clinical and Translational Research and Professor of Medicine and of Health Research & Policy, directing Stanford's CTSA/Spectrum training programs in medical research methods and serving as chief of the Division of Epidemiology in HRP. He is co-founder and co-director of the Meta-research innovation Center at Stanford (METRICS), a group dedicated to examining and improving the reproducibility and efficiency of biomedical research. 

Henry Greely, JD, Chair of SCBE's Steering Committee, is Professor of Law and Professor, by courtesy, of Genetics at Stanford University. Specializing in health law and policy, Greely has written on cloning, the implications of genetics for the health care system, health care insurance and financing and the stem cell debate.

Stephanie M. Harman, MD, FACP graduated from Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine. She then completed a residency in Internal Medicine at Stanford and a Palliative Care fellowship at the Palo Alto VA/Stanford program before joining the faculty at Stanford. She is the founding medical director of Palliative Care Services for Stanford Health Care and Associate Program Director for Stanford's Internal Medicine Residency Program. Her research and educational interests include communication training in healthcare and bioethics in end-of-life care.

Alvan Ikoku, MD, PhD, is assistant professor in the departments of comparative literature and medicine. He received his MD from Harvard and PhD in comparative literature from Columbia. Prior to joining the faculty in 2014, he was an Andrew W Mellon Fellow in the Humanities at the humanities center. He is currently affiliated with the centers for african studies and comparative studies in race and ethnicity, as well as the center for global health

Sandra Soo-Jin Lee, PhD, is a Senior Research Scholar and medical anthropologist who focuses on the social and ethical dimensions of emerging technologies and their integration into clinical practice.  Dr. Lee leads studies of public understandings of research using clinical data and samples, concepts of race, culture and human genetic variation, and citizen science,  commercialization of biotechnology and entrepreneurship. She is co-editor of Revising Race in a Genomic Age and is faculty in the Stanford Program in Science, Technology and Society

Kate Luenprakansit, MD is a Surgical Co-Management Hospitalist in the Division of Hospital Medicine and Clinical Ethics consultant. She completed her undergraduate degree at the University of California, Los Angeles in Molecular, Cell, Developmental Biology with a minor in Public Policy and received her medical degree from Oregon Health and Science University. She was also a MacLean Clinical Medical Ethics Fellow at the University of Chicago. She is currently a member of Stanford's Ethics Committee and serves as an ethics consultant.

David MagnusPhD, the Thomas A. Raffin Professor in Medicine and Biomedical Ethics, is Director of the Center and co-Chair of the Ethics Committee for the Stanford Health Center. He is also Director of the Scholarly Concentration in Biomedical Ethics and Medical Humanities in the School of Medicine.

José MaldonadoMD, FAPM, joined the Stanford faculty in 1993 and became Medical Director of the Psychosomatic Medicine Service in 1995. He received his medical degree at Ponce School of Medicine and his psychiatric training at Temple University, in Philadelphia. He completed additional training in Forensic Psychiatry at Temple University, and a fellowship in Consultation-Liaison/Neuropsychiatry at New England Medical Center/Tufts University, in Boston. Dr. Maldonado is an Associate Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at Stanford University School of Medicine; with courtesy appointments in the Departments of Medicine, Emergency Medicine, Surgery, the Center of Biomedical Ethics and the Stanford School of Law. He serves as Chief of the Medical and Forensic Psychiatry Section, Director of the Psychosomatic Medicine Clinic, and Medical Director of the Psychosomatic Medicine Consult Service. Dr. Maldonado serves as psychiatric consultant to all solid organ transplant teams (i.e., heart, lung, liver, kidney, and small bowel); including our new program in Composite Tissue Allotransplantation. He has special expertise in the areas of psychosomatic medicine and somatoform disorders, neuropsychiatry, dissociation, medical hypnosis, and organ transplantation.

Kelly E. Ormond, MS, CGC, received her MS in genetic counseling from Northwestern University in 1994 and a post-doctoral certificate in Medical Ethics from the University of Chicago in 2001. She serves as the Director of the MS in Human Genetics and Genetic Counseling (GC) program at Stanford. Several of the classes she teaches are open to students outside of the GC program and may be of interest to students who are pre-med or are interested in careers in genetics or ethics in the future. 

Bertrand M. Patenaude, PhD teaches history, international relations, and human rights at Stanford, where he is a Faculty Fellow at the Center for Innovation in Global Health (CIGH) and a Lecturer at the Center for Biomedical Ethics (SCBE). He is also a Hoover Institute Research Fellow. His first book, The Big Show in Bololand: The American Relief Expedition to Soviet Russia in the Famine of 1921 (Stanford University Press, 2002), won the 2003 Marshall Shulman Book Prize and was the basis of a PBS documentary film broadcast in 2011. His most recent book, Trotsky: Downfall of a Revolutionary, published by HarperCollins in 2009, was serialized for radio by the BBC. His previous work, A Wealth of Ideas: Revelations from the Hoover Institution Archives(Stanford University Press, 2006), is a generously illustrated large-format book featuring rare documents, photographs, posters, and artifacts from the Hoover Institution Archives at Stanford.

Patenaude is the editor of several books, including The Russian Revolution and Stalin and Stalinism. His documentary film credits include associate producer of the Emmy Award-winning PBS film Inside the USSR and of the FRONTLINE documentary A Journey to Russia, and story editor of Stalin's Ghost, an NBC News Special Report. He was educated at Boston College and the University of Vienna and received his PhD in History from Stanford in 1987. He taught for eight years (1992-2000) in the Department of National Security Affairs at the Naval Postgraduate School in Monterey, California, where his outstanding performance as a classroom instructor was recognized with the Schieffelin Award for Teaching Excellence for two consecutive years (1998, 1999). Patenaude has lectured throughout Europe for Stanford Travel/Study, Smithsonian Journeys, and Lindblad Expeditions.

Laura Roberts, MD, MA, began her tenure as chair of Stanford's Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences in 2010. Best known for her work on ethical issues and public policy in the field of psychiatry, she is also recognized for her success as a mentor and teacher.

Audrey Shafer, MD, is a Professor in the Department of Anesthesia at the Stanford University School of Medicine and Staff Anesthesiologist at the Veterans Affairs Palo Alto Health Care System. Her interests include writing, poetry, medical humanities, the language of medicine, communication in the peri- and intraoperative periods, and ethics in the operating room.

Holly Tabor, PhD, Associate Professor of Medicine and the Associate Director for Clinical Ethics and Education. She is returning to SCBE after eight years at the Treuman Katz Center for Pediatric Bioethics at Seattle Children’s Research Institute and at the University of Washington. She received her PhD in Epidemiology from Stanford in 2002, and then was a Senior Scientist at the Stanford Human Genome Center. From 2005-2008 she was one of the first postdoctoral fellows at CIRGE/SCBE. Her research focuses on ethical issues in genetics and genomics, specifically return of results and translation for exome and whole genome sequencing.