Senior Scientist & Outreach Coordinator

Ken is a University of California, San Diego (UCSD) graduate (Biochemistry and Cell Biology) and recent retiree (Biomedical Researcher, UCSD School of Medicine). While researching parasitic organisms, viruses, and bacterium, he developed a wide range of skills and experiences including molecular biology, recombinant protein expression (prokaryote/eukaryote systems), enzyme kinetics, and molecular diagnostic testing. Ken is also a member of a “bench-to-bedside” phase 3 clinical trial study. Throughout his career, he was involved in mentoring University junior faculty, and medical, pharmacy, graduate, undergraduate, and high school students.

Ken spent nine years mentoring 4th and 5th graders in an interactive after-school science program. The experience of engaging young minds in building projects through logical and creative thinking was immensely rewarding. He continues to provide challenging opportunities in developing inquisitiveness and creativity in today’s youth. Ken strives to build upon the community outreach program of the Institute and provide the critical thinking foundation required to unleash the unlimited enthusiasm, growth, and possibilities we all have.

Ken Hirata