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IRB Main > IRB Committee Membership

IRB - Human Participants Committee Membership

Committee Composition

Federal regulations require that membership of the IRB include at a minimum, one member whose primary concerns are in scientific areas, one member whose primary concerns are in nonscientific areas, numerous members representing more than a single profession, and at least one individual not affiliated with Cornell.

Because Cornell is a large institution, additional members are included to provide adequate representation of the diverse research community and to accommodate the workload associated with reviewing large numbers of applications. Membership beyond the minimum required by regulation is drawn from faculty and staff primarily from the social, behavioral and biological sciences.

The membership of the IRB at Cornell is comprised of twelve to eighteen voting members. The current IRB membership includes the following:


  • Adam Anderson, Associate Professor, Human Ecology/Human Development
  • Kathleen Bergin, non-affiliated member and non-scientist
  • Reverend Doctor Robin Blair, non-affiliated member and non-scientist
  • Kent Bullis, M.D., Executive Director, Cornell Health (alternate for Kenneth Hill)
  • Alexis Brubaker (Ex-Officio, non-voting), Biosafety Officer, Environmental Health & Safety
  • Gary Evans, Professor, Design and Environmental Analysis/Human Development
  • Kenneth Hill, M.D., Cornell Health
  • Katherine Kinzler, Associate Professor, Psychology/Human Development
  • Saurabh Mehta, Associate Professor, Nutritional Sciences
  • Todd Schmit, Associate Professor, Applied Economics & Management
  • Sarah von Schrader, Assistant Director of Research, K. Lisa Yang and Hock E. Tan Institute on Employment and Disability, ILR School
  • Robert Scott, Executive Director, Cornell Prison Education Program, Prisoner representative
  • Mike Shapiro, Professor, Communication
  • Josh Turse, Senior Biosafety Specialist (alternate for Alexis Brubaker)
  • Elaine Wethington, Professor, Human Development
  • Andrew Willford (Chair), Professor, Anthropology

Members are appointed by the President, upon recommendation of the Dean of Faculty in consultation with the Vice Provost for Research. Membership terms vary from one to three years (except for the Biosafety Officer who is ex officio with voting privileges). The committee chair is appointed from the faculty membership and will serve for a term of one to three years.

Note: A quorum will be a majority (greater than 50 per cent) of the voting members of the IRB. For reasons other than conflict of interest, abstentions do not alter the quorum, or change the number of votes required.

IRB Main > IRB Committee Membership