Karen H. Tountas, Ph.D.
V.P., Program and Account Management
Dr. Tountas joined the Zipher/Lumanity Leadership Team to guide the PMO Division and strategically integrate innovative technical solutions into Zipher programs in 2022. Karen’s extensive program management, strategic expertise and leadership will not only drive execution of deliverables in an aligned and integrated manner across all Zipher functions but will also enable high-functioning teams and accelerate our growth.
Scientifically, Karen is a generalist and brings 40+ years of experience across industry, academia, and non-profits, which includes nearly 20 years of direct program management experience embracing research programs in cancer, infectious, inflammatory, nutritional diseases and disorders, neurobiology, and others. She enjoys leading highly collaborative efforts and understands research and development processes, the importance of ethical conduct, and the value stakeholder engagement brings to facilitate programmatic success. Before joining the Zipher/Lumanity team, Karen spent part of her career at the Foundation for the National Institutes of Health (FNIH) managing large (and small) internationally conducted research consortia. Dr. Tountas has collaborated with major international players including the World Health Organization, the African Union, and the European Union. In 2020, Dr. Tountas played a key role in a critical SARS-CoV2 initiative. She facilitated and guided the development of key solutions and resources used by ACTIV clinical trial teams to initiate approved clinical protocols quickly and efficiently. Her involvement in the initiative accelerated COVID-19 Therapeutic Interventions and Vaccines (ACTIV), a public-private partnership led by the National Institutes of Health (NIH). Karen was recognized in 2021 and received an NIH Director’s Award and an NCATS Director’s Award. Prior to joining the FNIH, Dr. Tountas managed four congressionally directed and solicited research programs for the Dept. of Defense that were focused on providing grants for basic and translational research through clinical research and trials across a wide variety of disease and disorder topics.
Dr. Tountas holds a BA in Zoology from the University of Maine at Orono, an MA in Biology with a concentration in immunology from Mount Holyoke College, and a Ph.D. in Microbiology with a concentration in immunology from the University of Virginia.