OIST’s Board of Councilors welcomes six new members with local, national, and international experience

New members bring a wealth of expertise in diverse fields.

New BOC members header image 20240110

The Okinawa Institute of Science and Technology (OIST) is welcoming six new members to its Board of Councilors: Duncan Clark, Masakazu Igarashi, Yuko Kakazu, Yi-Jyun Luo, Kamila Mustafina, and Ayaka Usui started their terms on November 1, 2023. Among them, four are OIST alumni and one hails from Okinawa. 

The Board of Councilors (BOC) at OIST is responsible for providing advice and making proposals regarding the management of the university. The BOC also supports the Board of Governors, which has the authority and responsibility for the management of OIST and advises the President in steering the university in the most favorable directions. 

Mr. Duncan Clark
Mr. Duncan Clark 

Mr. Duncan Clark 

Mr. Clark is the Chairman and Founder of BDA China Ltd., a leading advisory firm serving investors in Asia’s highest growth sectors. He obtained a BSc in economics from the London School of Economics. Mr. Clark was a visiting scholar at Stanford University’s Innovation and Entrepreneurship Program and a visiting senior fellow at the Institute of Global Affairs at his alma mater. 

Dr. Masakazu Igarashi
Dr. Masakazu Igarashi 

Dr. Masakazu Igarashi 

Dr. Igarashi is a senior specialist associate medical advisor/medical science liaison at MSD K.K. He obtained his PhD in neurobiology from OIST in 2019 and thereafter was a postdoctoral fellow at the Salk Institute for Biological Studies. 

Dr. Yuko Kakazu
Dr. Yuko Kakazu

Dr. Yuko Kakazu 

Dr. Kakazu is an astronomer and manages educational outreach programs at the National Astronomical Observatory of Japan (NAOJ) and Thirty Meter Telescope International Observatory in Hawai’i. She hails from Okinawa and obtained her PhD in astrophysics from the University of Hawai’i at Manoa. 

 

Dr. Yi-Jyun Luo
Dr. Yi-Jyun Luo 

Dr. Yi-Jyun Luo 

Dr. Luo is an assistant research fellow at the Biodiversity Research Center at Academia Sinica, Taiwan. He obtained his PhD in genomics and evolutionary biology from OIST in 2017. Dr. Luo’s research primarily focuses on evolutionary developmental biology and evolutionary genomics. 

Dr. Kamila Mustafina
Dr. Kamila Mustafina 

Dr. Kamila Mustafina 

Dr. Mustafina is a mammalian synthetic biologist and postdoctoral scholar at the Department of Bioengineering at MIT. She obtained her PhD in genomics and evolutionary biology from OIST in 2021. Dr. Mustafina specializes in RNA-sequencing-based screening and genetic circuits. 

Dr. Ayaka Usui
Dr. Ayaka Usui 

Dr. Ayaka Usui 

Dr. Usui graduated from OIST with her PhD in physics in 2020 and was awarded the prestigious Postdoctoral Maria de Maeztu Fellowship in 2021. Currently, she contributes to the field of cosmos sciences as a postdoctoral fellow at the University of Barcelona’s Institute of Cosmos Sciences. 

OIST welcomes these six new members and expresses its sincere gratitude to the outgoing BOC members — Ms. Yumi Kuwana, Dr. Faisal Mahmood, Dr. Katsuhiko Shirai, and Prof. Ken Peach — for their valuable contributions to the development and success of our institution. 

For press enquiries, please contact media@oist.jp

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