University of Arizona professor Jennifer Barton elected into SPIE presidential chain

The Society’s next vice president is also co-chair of SPIE Photonics West BiOS conference
02 August 2021
Newly elected SPIE vice president Jennifer Barton, secretary-treasurer Jason Mulliner, and directors Audrey Bowden, Gong-Ru Lin, Allison Barto, Rebecca Fahrig.
Top row, left to right: Jennifer Barton, Audrey Bowden, Gong-Ru Lin; bottom row, left to right: Jason Mulliner, Allison Barto, Rebecca Fahrig.

BELLINGHAM, Washington, USA — Jennifer Kehlet Barton, the Thomas R. Brown Distinguished Professor of Biomedical Engineering, professor of optical sciences, and director of the BIO5 Institute at the University of Arizona, has been elected to serve as the 2022 Vice President of SPIE, the international society for optics and photonics. With her election, Barton joins the SPIE presidential chain, and will serve as President-Elect in 2023 and as the Society's President in 2024.

SPIE 2021 President David Andrews, a professor at the University of East Anglia, made the announcement along with other SPIE election results at this year's Annual General Meeting of the Society on 2 August during SPIE Optics + Photonics. Terms begin on 1 January 2022.

Barton is known for her development of miniature endoscopes that combine multiple optical imaging techniques, particularly optical coherence tomography and fluorescence spectroscopy. Her research into light-tissue interaction and dynamic optical properties of blood laid the groundwork for a novel therapeutic laser to treat disorders of the skin's blood vessels. She has published over 120 peer-reviewed journal papers in these research areas.

Barton has a long history with SPIE, including serving on its Board of Directors and on various committees including the Engineering, Science, and Technology Policy Committee and the Membership & Communities Committee. She serves as symposium co-chair of SPIE Photonics West BiOS, and as session chair for the European Conferences on Biomedical Optics. Barton's awards include the 1997 DJ Lovell Scholarship and the 2016 SPIE President's Award.

"I am honored and enthusiastic to serve as SPIE's next Vice-President, and to enter the Presidential chain," said Barton. "SPIE has been vital to my career in industry and academia and is a tremendous source of inspiration and collaboration for myself and my trainees. I look forward to helping SPIE become even more inclusive as we leverage the lessons learned from a year of remote content delivery, and continue to provide outstanding value to constituents with exciting events, great services, and cutting-edge digital content."

Alongside Barton, Anita Mahadevan-Jansen, a professor at Vanderbilt University, will serve as the 2022 SPIE President.

Jason Mulliner, Chief Financial Officer at Alluxa Inc., was elected to serve as the 2022 SPIE Secretary/Treasurer.

The following newly elected Society Directors will serve three-year terms from 2022-2024:
Audrey Bowden, the Dorothy Wingfield Phillips Chancellor Faculty Fellow and associate professor of biomedical and electrical engineering and computer science at Vanderbilt University
Gong-Ru Lin, Distinguished Professor and Director at National Taiwan University
Allison Barto, Director at Ball Aerospace
Rebecca Fahrig, Head of Innovations, Advanced Therapies at Siemens Healthcare GmbH

The SPIE nominating committee accepts recommendations for the election slate on an ongoing basis. Directors, who serve a three-year term, are expected to attend and participate in three board meetings each year. To make a recommendation, or for more information, email

About SPIE

SPIE is the international society for optics and photonics, an educational not-for-profit organization founded in 1955 to advance light-based science, engineering, and technology. The Society serves more than 258,000 constituents from 184 countries, offering conferences and their published proceedings, continuing education, books, journals, and the SPIE Digital Library. In 2020, SPIE provided over $5 million in community support including scholarships and awards, outreach and advocacy programs, travel grants, public policy, and educational resources.

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