RAIN Board of Directors

Michelle Miller

Board Members

Michelle has a BS in Molecular Genetics, an MS in Human Genetics and an MBA. She is an expert in genome sequencing and currently works as general manager of Neogen Canada

Gustavo Palacios

Board Member

Dr. Palacios has published more than 200 peer-reviewed manuscripts including publications and covers in Cell, Science, Nature, and The New England Journal of Medicine. His current research interests include the study of transmission in person-to-person and animal-to-person routes and creating mechanisms to accelerate research and development against emerging pathogen threats. Dr. Palacios will strengthen existing research collaborations laying a foundation for joint research initiatives in public health.



“I joined RAIN to support Professor David Hirschberg’s vision of developing a biotech industry in Tacoma by growing biotech talent, jobs, and companies here.  We need scientists, techies, and entrepreneurs, but we also need business folks and investors comfortable with new businesses and passionate founders. With my career primarily focused on investments in the private equity industry, I hope my contribution is to bring that business experience and perspective to this exciting endeavor!”



Years ago, I returned to Tacoma with a dream of starting a life science incubator that would educate students, grow jobs, and turn out start-up companies for our region. RAIN is the recognition of that dream. My strength is in creating innovative spaces where people can collaborate develop skills and invent useful tools. RAIN is about rapid prototyping of ideas, demonstration of technology to investors and solutions to local problems. RAIN is about fundamental work from the bottom up. We want to be Tacoma’s hometown innovation center, a proving ground for technical expertise. We are developing human capital for the community.



Dr. Amoroso is a physician with extensive experience in clinical research administration. A specialist in Aerospace Medicine, he served as a research epidemiologist in the US Army for over 30 years and most recently as a Physician Executive overseeing a Research Institute for a local Health System. His primary research interests include leveraging technology and data to improve patient care and population health while building collaborative groups of investigators to conduct research on the cutting edge of medicine and science. “I am enthusiastically supportive of the RAIN mission and the opportunity to support new businesses taking root in our community, providing valuable services as well as training and employment to students and entrepreneurs.”



Tenley Cederstrand, BS Biology WSU, has over 25 years experience in business development, focused primarily in life sciences, but also in fostering start-up companies in apparel, fine art and real estate. She brings to the table a knowledge of the commercial side of science and a strategic look at developing small companies. Tenley has been on the board of the Children’s Museum of Tacoma and held leadership roles at Annie Wright Schools and Junior Achievement of Washington, primarily in the area of fund-raising. “RAIN is poised to develop scientists and a scientific job core from the many great institutions that call the South Sound home.”



Will Hausa is a research scientist with over a decade of experience evaluating environmental data for mid-size and major municipalities. Will is an Environmental Anti-Racist and he believes the best form of advocacy is education. For this reason Will created Waterversity, a non-profit organization that offers affordable job training in “blue collar biotech careers” that are in demand and projected for growth according to the Department of Labor statistics.

Will is President of the Pacific Northwest Clean Water Association’s Puget Sound section, and he utilizes those relationships to increase understanding and awareness of in the water/ wastewater community.

Will also advocates for underserved communities through his gubernatorial appointment to the Washington State Commission on African American Affairs.  As a member of RAIN’s Board, Will’s goal is to increase education and job opportunities in underserved communities with an emphasis in scientific analysis and targeted experimentation.

Ken McDonald

Board Member, Finance Committee

My career has concentrated on strategic healthcare planning, operations, and logistics for the US Army and federal government, plus entrepreneurial activities, and undergraduate business education. My goal is to use this skill set to further RAIN's mission of bringing biotech opportunities to Tacoma and underserved communities. I have a DBA from Capella University and a MBA from Western New England University

Joanna Monroe, MBA, JD

Board Member

Joanna has held numerous board director, chair and committee leader roles with several non-profit organizations. Joanna currently serves on the MultiCare board, past board chair of Franke Tobey Jones, elder care and retirement facility. Past Chair of the Tacoma-Pierce County Chamber of Commerce. Joanna was a Prosecuting Attorney with the State of Washington, and an attorney with Girolami, Meyers & Gormly. Joanna recently retired from TrueBlue and established Consult JSM, a boutique consulting firm advising companies on legal, compliance and risk issues. Joanna holds a Master of Business Administration from the University of Phoenix, a Juris Doctor, cum laude, from the University of Puget Sound, and a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science from California State University at Northridge.

Marylinn Munson

Board Member

Marylinn has worked in the life science, biotechnology and agriculture industry for nearly 30 years. Currently a VP at Neogen, she heads up the Genomics Division. Neogen delivers innovative testing for the discovery and commercial application of advance genetics. Marylinn has held international leadership roles at a number of industry-leading biotech and life science companies. She managed the international genomics informatics field team at Qiagen; built and managed a field sales team and an international operations group, and was responsible for 60% of the entire global business at Illumina; and part of a Core Strategy Team, business development and marketing at Agilent. At Amersham Biosciences (GE Healthcare), Marylinn sold more than 70% of all Next Generation Systems in North America, many of which were used as part of the Human Genome Project. Marylinn's passion for excellence, people and customers has made her the recipient of a number of industry awards including the Federal Labs Consortium Award for Technology Transfer.

Marylinn has a Bachelor of Arts in Chemistry from the University of Oregon as an Oregon Scholar and Mertie Stevens Scholar. She is listed as an inventor on US patents.


Director Emeritus

I believe in the power of education and mentoring.  When I heard Professor David Hirschberg describe his dream, I wanted to become part of his team to make it happen, here in the Tacoma area. The hand-on experience RAIN provides students is a valuable bridge from thorough academic studies into real world settings. RAIN complements the systems in place, and is creating networks that can generate powerful synergies.  RAIN is an opportunity for me to contribute the investment, financial and analytical skills from my business career to the benefit of students and my community.

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