SBMT Elects Vicky Yamamoto, PhD as its 20th President in order to Promote and Advance, Neuro-Technology, Innovation, Policies, Research, Development, Diversity and Engage Female Scientists in the field of Brain Mapping and Therapeutics.
I am truly humbled and honored to be elected as the 20th president of the Society for Brain Mapping & Therapeutics; an organization that I helped co-found and watched to be one of the fastest growing multispecialty associations and thinktanks with active and robust policy arm formulating and helping executing neurotech initiatives such as President Obama’s BRAIN Initiative, Neuroscience-20 (Brain, Spine and Mental Health) and Brain Technology and Innovation Park (BTIP). What a privilege to be a part of such visionary teams of scientists, engineers, physicians, surgeons, policymakers, industry leaders, philanthropists, and technologists. I am also honored to serve as the executive director of SBMT for the past 5 years being involved in operational and strategic growth of the organization and to work with a world-class board of directors including our founder Dr. Kateb and Nobel Laureate Dr. Eric Kandel and his equally amazing and remarkable wife Professor Denise Kandel who always advocates for more women and minorities in our board.
The past two years have been very difficult for our members who have been at the front line in the fight against COVID-19 globally. As I recall in March 2020, one week before our convention, I co-chaired the COVID-19 taskforce with the 18th President of SBMT Dr. Hariri and then president-elect and now the 19th President of SBMT Dr. Cormier as well as distinguished members of SBMT, swiftly building a global intellectual powerhouse of SBMT to address COVID-19 diagnosis and therapeutics. We also delivered 700+ meals and 4 truckloads of PPEs to several local hospitals in the middle of riots and curfew in Los Angeles while advocating for the proposition 14 ($5.5B for stem cell research, of which $1.5B is allocated for neuroscience research).
Many of our SBMT members are relentless, dedicated frontline heroes of the coronavirus pandemic and together, we successfully managed many difficult circumstances and published the most comprehensive review on COVID-19, which was published in the Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease. Last year, we held our Neuroscience20/N20 summit virtually with near 100 speakers across the G20 countries and their neighboring countries: the largest N20 summit ever! This organization, its members and the board, have dealt with competitive forces, sometimes antagonistic, from our competitors in recent years. This is understandable as we are a quite unique scientific and medical association. We have built the organization on the granite of science and medicine; on the bedrock of trust in open collaboration and on fundamentals of helping humanity with the spirit of philanthropy and innovation. As one of the co-founders of SBMT, I am very proud and feel fortunate to have the opportunity to work with amazing members and the board of SBMT, continue to prevail the adversity we faced, to expand the organization together in the past 20 years, and to impact science and healthcare globally through our groundbreaking initiatives.
My vision and goals as the 20th president and the first Asian female president of this organization, are to remain focused on global expansions of our pioneering initiatives such as N20 and BTIP, and continue innovation by partnering with NASA, National Labs, DoD, VA, university partners such as Johns Hopkins University, St Louis University, industry leaders such as Celularity, Fulgent Genetics, Medtronic to name a few. We continue our robust collaboration with the bipartisan congressional neuroscience caucus. We also would like to follow the lead of my dear board member Dr. Denise Kandel and see more female scientists amongst our leadership ranks.
My predecessors, Professor Robert Hariri, and Professor Jason Cormier and I continue to make cellular therapy a priority. Needless to say that Dr. Hariri’s leadership at the early stages of the COVID-19 pandemic presented us with an FDA approved immunotherapy for COVID-19. I would like to thank Dr. Cormier’s leadership for helping us navigate a difficult pandemic year combined with many logistical challenges; under his and Dr. Hariri’s leaderships, we held our 17th and 18th combined annual convention in July 2021 at the LA Convention Center; the first convention after the re-opening of California which was covered by the LA Times.
During my tenure, I will focus on programmatic expansion, collaboration with truly honest organization which are not only trade shows, but they have shared values. I look forward sharing this exciting journey with our amazing members, supporters and strategic partners.
History of the Society for Brain Mapping and Therapeutics (SBMT)
Over the 16 years since its founding, the SBMT has fostered dramatic advances in brain measurement and therapy by bringing about a pioneering transformation of the way in which leaders and innovators interact in advancing the science and technology of brain science. The SBMT draws its own structure from the massively parallel and reciprocal connection principle that is so tremendously effective in the human brain itself: the SBMT has a broad, dynamic focus for reciprocally connecting scientists and entrepreneurs. The advancements of our understanding the brain and nervous system support that focus by drawing on the widest possible array of inputs and sources. At remarkable annual meetings, SBMT has drawn together:
- Space scientists from NASA and the Jet Propulsion Lab (JPL),
- Technology champions from DARPA (the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency) and the military branches and the Los Alamos National Laboratory,
- The collective academic neuroscientists from hundreds of research universities around the world,
- Major governmental agencies supporting clinical science such as the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and the Veterans Administration,
- The President of the United States and political leaders from the US Congress that keep our nation focused on serving the people through the advancement of science,
- Leading clinical scientists from the fields of neurosurgery, neurology, psychiatry, orthopedics, anesthesiology, and physical medicine,
- Scientists and other leadership from the world's leading technology corporations.
- Industry leaders (device and pharmaceutical)
- International delegations from all continents