2023 Women in Optics Planner

Starting in 2005, SPIE has produced the annual Women in Optics Planner highlighting women who are making a difference through their work and other contributions to the fields of science, optics, and engineering. This year's edition includes an engaging and informative collection of stories from female scientists, engineers, researchers, and industry leaders.
Image: Women in Optics Planner 2023

2023 Women in Optics Planner: A bright new beginning

Headshot: Dr. Jennifer Barton, Professor at University of Arizona, SPIE Fellow, 2023 SPIE President-Elect

2023 opens a new chapter for each of us, and it’s fitting to frame the year with the inspiring stories of women who’ve forged their own paths to make a difference in our world through science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM). There have been bumps and challenges— and what many would describe as darkness— in our global community in recent times, but these problem-solvers, collaborators, and changemakers remind us that our future is full of light.

Take the time to soak in the full spectrum of their voices and journeys. Learn from their experiences of overcoming adversity and moving us forward. Harness their passion for creation and discovery.

May their narratives remind us to strive for equity, diversity, and inclusion in our classrooms, laboratories, conference rooms, and board rooms. May they inspire future generations of female pioneers in optics and photonics. And may they lead to many new, hopeful, and bright beginnings.

Jennifer Barton
Professor, University of Arizona
SPIE Fellow
2023 SPIE President-Elect

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2023 profiles, listed in alphabetical order by last name

Verònica Ahufinger

Associate Professor

Jennifer Church

Advisory Engineer

Amrita Darji

Member of Technical Staff R&D

Clarissa M. DeLeon

Graduate Student

Iris Erichsen

Head of Engineering and Special Projects

Marie-Christine Ferland

Business Development Director and Acting Sales & Marketing Director

Alexa Hudnut

Staff Optical Systems Engineer

Faiza Iftikhar

PhD Student

Jasleen Kaur

PhD Student

Laura M. Lechuga

Full Professor

Helen Li

Director of Engineering, Laser & Optics

Yuansheng Ma

Distinguished Product Engineer

P. Susthitha Menon

Associate Professor (Senior Research Fellow)

Diana Mojahed

Postdoctoral Associate

Hannah Noble

Technical Lead Manager

Rosa Ana Perez-Herrera

Associate Professor

Anna Schueth

Post-doctoral Researcher

Agnieszka Siemion

Assistant Professor, Head of Laboratory of Optical Information Processing, Vice-Dean for Students Affairs

Rukmani Singh

PhD Candidate

Yan Zhang

Graduate Student

Lei Zheng

Postdoctoral Researcher


Nominations for the 2024 planner closed on 24 February 2023. Thank you to all who submitted a nomination this year! The selection process is underway. The nomination form for the 2025 planner will open in Fall 2023.

Thank you to the sponsors of the 2023 Women in Optics Planner