Mar 01, 2022 8:00 AM

Read Time: 4 minutes


Lindsay Collin, PhD, MPH | Peter Hale, MD | Krystle Osby, BS | Janna Gordon, PhD | Alessandra Riggio, PhD | Daniel Ermann, MD

A large part of Huntsman Cancer Institute’s mission is to pass down knowledge by training upcoming generations of scientists and physicians. Trainees come from all age groups—high school to postdoc. The trainees featured here share a little about themselves, their work, and what brought them to Huntsman Cancer Institute. 

Lindsay Collin, PhD, MPH

“I chose Utah for my postdoc because of the incredible research and training opportunities offered at Huntsman Cancer Institute and in the research lab of my mentor—and also to be in the mountains! I have loved the opportunities to learn from cancer researchers across the translational spectrum, to serve as the scientific liaison for the Breast and Gynecologic Cancers Research Advocate Committee, and to participate in EDI initiatives in the Department of Population Health Sciences.”

Lindsay Collin, PhD, MPH
Cancer Epidemiology Postdoctoral Fellow and Translational Sciences TL1 Fellow
Huntsman Cancer Institute Mentor: Jennifer Doherty, MS, PhD
Hometown: Truckee, California
Fun Fact: Competes in Ironman triathlons and ultramarathons


daniel ermann md

“I always wanted to be a doctor, even since I was young. I became interested in hematology/oncology when my close family members had difficult journeys through cancer. I wanted to give back and provide optimal outcomes for my patients. I am Jewish and have found the University of Utah and Huntsman Cancer Institute are very open to diversity and inclusion. I feel accepted as part of the community. I have enjoyed the amount of autonomy, responsibility, and decision-making capability, access to clinical trials, and fantastic colleagues and mentors here.”

Daniel Ermann, MD
Hematology and Oncology Fellow
Huntsman Cancer Institute Mentors: Deborah Stephens, DO; Boyu Hu, MD; Harsh Shah, DO
Hometown: Doylestown, Pennsylvania
Fun Fact: Is a computer enthusiast and built one of his own


janna gordon phd

“I am continually learning from my colleagues. Our research team includes experts from different academic domains, including anthropology, kinesiology, public health, and sociology. I have appreciated the diverse perspectives on health, health inequities, and research methodologies. I was excited about the world-class research training alongside world-class nature and recreational opportunities! It is incredible to attend a brilliant seminar or productive research meeting, and then finish work, drive 20 minutes, and find yourself in a National Forest. The hikes here are breathtaking.”

Janna Gordon, PhD
Center for Health Outcomes and Population Equity (HOPE) Postdoctoral Research Associate
Huntsman Cancer Institute Mentor: David Wetter, PhD, MS
Hometown: Long Island, New York
Fun Fact: Has lived in every time zone in the contiguous United States


peter hale md

“I knew very early on that I wanted to be an oncologist with a focus on patient care in the clinical setting. I was drawn to Utah because I knew Huntsman Cancer Institute would provide me the breadth of training I would need to provide exceptional care to the Mountain West. What I did not expect was how thoroughly I would enjoy my work relationships. I’m honored to work alongside so many thoughtful, supporting staff members, exceptional nurses, and knowledgeable clinicians.”

Peter Hale, MD
Hematology and Oncology Fellow
Huntsman Cancer Institute Mentors: Sarah Colonna, MD, Weldon Gilcrease, MD, and Srinivas Tantravahi, MBBS, MRCP (UK)
Hometown: Sterling, Virginia
Fun Fact: Loves to fly-fish


krystle osby, bs

“I am proud to be a Black woman in science and a resource for my friends, family, and community to educate about health issues and clear up misconceptions. I am passionate about being an educator. I have a very supportive mentor who prioritizes my individual growth. The opportunities have been really enjoyable. I was honored to participate in the Huntsman Cancer Institute EDI Commission and have gained invaluable experience to enhance my professional development and skills outside of lab work.”

Krystle Osby, BS
Bioscience Molecular Biology Fellow
Huntsman Cancer Institute Mentor: Jason Gertz, PhD
Hometown: Escondido, California
Fun Fact: Crochets apparel, accessories, and home décor


alessandra riggio phd

“The innovative scientific breast cancer program as well as the beauties hidden in this state attracted me to Utah. I have enjoyed the cutting-edge technologies we have access to, the collaborative environment, and the open mind of my principal investigator. I feel truly honored to be part of Huntsman Cancer Institute—particularly during the difficulties of this global pandemic. My motto is to take advantage of this wonderful opportunity by making a significant contribution to the breast cancer community.”

Alessandra Riggio, PhD
Oncology Sciences Fellow
Huntsman Cancer Institute Mentor: Alana Welm, PhD
Hometown: Palermo, Italy
Fun Fact: Loves cooking healthy recipes and discovering not-so-common ingredients


The pandemic has had an unprecedented impact on training in biomedical research. To overcome these barriers and meet our deep commitment to training the next generation of cancer researchers, Huntsman Cancer Institute has taken many steps: holding trainee town halls, moving classes and meetings online, developing online curricula, and providing access to protective equipment and adequate COVID-19 testing. We have supported our trainees during the last two years and look forward to helping them flourish as the pandemic wanes and our training activities return to normal.

Don Ayer, PhD, Senior Director of Cancer Training and Career Enhancement

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Cancer touches all of us.

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