Dr. Knatokie Ford
Biomedical Scientist and Social Entrepreneur


Former Obama White House Senior Policy Advisor, Dr. Knatokie Ford: The Importance of Changing the Image of STEM

In her remarkable career, Dr. Knatokie Ford, biomedical researcher and former Senior Policy Advisor in the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy, continues to prove one thing: the scientist who communicates well can truly affect change across wide spectrums of society. Whether it be disseminating accurate information about their work to the public, developing effective science policy with government leaders, or advocating for more diversity in STEM careers.

Dr. Ford is Founder and CEO of Fly Sci™ Enterprise, an education and media consulting organization focused on leveraging the power of storytelling to promote social change, particularly in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) fields. A dynamic and inspiring speaker, Dr. Ford is an international advocate for STEM and media inclusion. As a biomedical scientist and social entrepreneur, she works with a number of leading organizations, including YouTube and the Association of National Advertisers where she serves as an Executive Advisor for the #SeeHer initiative.

Dr. Ford previously served as a Senior Policy Advisor at the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) from 2015 through the end of the Obama Administration where she oversaw development and implementation of the “Image of STEM” project. Listed in the top 100 S&T accomplishments of the Obama Administration, the Image of STEM project was a national initiative designed to raise visibility and improve the image of STEM fields and careers in order to help promote diversity in the STEM workforce. From 2012-2014, Dr. Ford served as a AAAS Science & Technology Policy Fellow at OSTP with the President’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology (PCAST). In this capacity, she managed concurrent projects on education technology and improving the nation’s healthcare system, in addition to working with OSTP’s STEM inclusion team. 

Prior to serving in the Obama Administration, Dr. Ford was a postdoctoral fellow at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston, completing her Ph.D. in Experimental Pathology at Harvard University where she studied age-related macular degeneration; in addition, she received her B.S. and M.S. degrees in Chemistry/Biological Chemistry from Clark Atlanta University.. She also spent time in Los Angeles where she had the opportunity to serve as a middle school teacher in an underserved community and work in the entertainment industry.

Dr. Ford currently serves on the Toy Association’s STEM/STEAM Strategic Leadership Committee and was on the 2018-2019 Barbie Global Advisory Council. She was a nominee in the “Shero” category of the inaugural Women’s Choice Awards in 2017 and is featured in the “BLACK GIRLS ROCK!” book by Beverly Bond.

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