DC CFAR Investigator Profiles

DC CFAR leadership and senior investigators have diverse backgrounds and are engaged in a variety of research activities. Learn more by reading their profiles. 


Rebecca Lynch

Rebecca Lynch, PhD, Assistant Professor at the George Washington University School of Medicine and Health Sciences

Dr. Rebecca Lynch is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Microbiology, Immunology & Tropical Medicine at the George Washington University and the academic lead of the DC CFAR HIV Cure Scientific Working Group.
J. Rendina

Jonathon Rendina, PhD, MPH, Senior Director of Research at Whitman-Walker Health

A social and health psychologist, Dr. Jonathon Rendina is the Senior Director of Research at the Whitman-Walker (WW) Institute and represents WW on the DC Center for AIDS Research Executive Committee.
Marta Catalfamo

Marta Catalfamo, PhD, Associate Professor in the Department of Microbiology and Immunology in the School of Medicine at Georgetown University

Follow your passion, and success will follow. As the Associate Director of the Basic Sciences Core and Co-lead of the new Aging and Comorbidities Scientific Interest Group (SIG), Dr. Marta Catalfamo continually strives to contribute and collaborate with people around a common goal.
David Huebner

David Huebner, PhD, MPH, Associate Professor, Department of Prevention and Community Health, George Washington University

An expert in behavioral, psychological, and community health, Dr. David Huebner has brought a wealth of knowledge and experience to the field of HIV/AIDS research and intervention. From a young age, Dr. Huebner was inspired by his mother, a social worker, to pursue a career in social justice and in addressing disparities around population health.
Cath Bollard Headshot

Catherine Bollard, MD, MBChB, Director of the Center for Cancer and Immunology, Children’s National Health System

Dr. Catherine Bollard’s career has taken her around the world and through multiple disciplines in medicine. A native of New Zealand, Dr. Bollard earned her Bachelor of Medicine, Bachelor of Surgery, and Doctorate in Medicine from the University of Otago, before holding appointments in London and in Texas. Through her medical training, Dr. Bollard became an expert in the field of hematology, bone marrow transplant, and cell therapy. This expertise and overall experience in immunology ultimately led her to focus on cancer research, where she has been a leader in the field of strengthening weakened immune systems using adoptive cell therapies.
Dr. Alberto Bosque

Alberto Bosque, PhD, MBA, Assistant Professor, Department of Microbiology, Immunology and Tropical Medicine, School of Medicine & Health Sciences, GWU

Dr. Alberto Bosque began his scientific career at the University of Zaragoza in Spain, where he studied biochemistry and cell biology. He credits his early mentors with driving his passion for understanding signaling pathways in cell biology and the mechanisms of down regulation of human T cell immune responses. Although his early research was not focused on HIV/AIDS, he notes the important parallels between HIV’s attack on the immune system and many of the signaling pathways that he studied. A presentation on HIV by Dr. Vicente Plenelles, who would later become his postdoctoral mentor, made him consider the retrovirus in a new light and as a potential new focus for his research. With two postdoctoral fellowship opportunities – one from the Ministry of Science and Technology in Spain and the Mathilde Krim Postdoctoral Fellowship from the Foundation for AIDS Research (amfAR) – Dr. Bosque joined Dr. Planelles’s laboratory at the University of Utah.
Dr. Natella Rakhmanina IP

Natella Rakhmanina, MD, AAHIVS, PhD, Director of HIV Services, Division of Infectious Diseases, Children's National Health System

Dr. Natella Rakhmanina’s career has taken her from Moscow, Russia to Little Rock, Arkansas to Columbus, Ohio to Washington, DC. She has studied pediatrics, toxicology, pharmacology and pharmacogenetics, but the common threads connecting her work has been a passion for the health of children and adolescents and HIV research. This passion has been evident in her pursuit to optimize HIV treatment for pediatric patients for nearly two decades in her clinical research, and respected voice for HIV pharmacology and care for children and adolescents. Today, Dr. Rakhmanina wears many hats: she is a Professor at the George Washington University’s School of Medicine and Health Sciences; Director of the Special Immunology Pediatric HIV Program as well as Director of HIV Services at Children’s National Hospital System (CNH) in Washington, DC; Senior Technical Advisor for the Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric AIDS Foundation (EGPAF); and noted member of advisory boards and executive committees across the District, nationally and globally.
Dr. Sanjay Maggirwar IP

Sanjay Maggirwar, PhD, MBA: Professor and Chair, GW Department of Microbiology, Immunology, and Tropical Medicine

Dr. Sanjay Maggirwar began his prolific career at the Dr. Babasaheb Ambedkar Marathwada University in Aurangabad, India, where he received both his Bachelor and Master of Science in Biochemistry. Dr. Maggirwar then pursued his MBA and developed a strong interest in theater, performing on stage and helping with other theater-related tasks including make-up, stagecraft, and lights. He then completed his PhD in Molecular Microbiology at the Savitribai Phule Pune University and his postdoctoral work at the Milton S. Hershey Medical Center in Hershey, PA, Dr. Maggirwar describes this unique path – his theater experience and his MBA training – as foundational to his perspective on HIV research and scientific leadership. It provided him with a set of skills that he has applied to his extensive HIV research portfolio and to his responsibilities as Professor and Chair of the Department of Microbiology, Immunology, and Tropical Medicine at the George Washington University’s School of Medicine and Health Sciences.
Dr. Sarah Henn Photo IP

Sarah Henn, MD, MPH, Chief Medical Officer at Whitman-Walker Health

As an undergraduate student at Hamilton College, Dr. Sarah Henn was passionate about diplomacy and policy. She credits courses she took from a former diplomat with opening her eyes to the complex processes involved in enacting policies within a governing body. Although she was inspired, Dr. Henn realized she was interested in pursuing a path that allowed for greater autonomy in implementing change. This realization led Dr. Henn to her career in medicine. Now, serving as both the Chief Medical Officer at Whitman-Walker Health in Washington, DC and an institutional representative for the DC CFAR's executive committee, Dr. Henn's focus in both capacities is to ensure that the community's voice and needs are continuously being heard and effectively addressed in research.
Dr. Lisa Bowleg Photo IP

Lisa Bowleg, PhD, MA, Professor, Department of Psychology at the George Washington University

Dr. Lisa Bowleg’s interest in HIV research began when she was an undergraduate psychology student at Georgetown University. She credits a Women’s Studies course, in particular, as instrumental to unlocking her interest in intersectionality – an analytical framework that examines how different intersecting social positions (e.g., race, gender, sexual identity, and class) reflect interlocking social-structural privilege and inequality (e.g., racism, sexism, classism, and heterosexism). Now the Director of the DC CFAR Social and Behavioral Sciences (SBS) Core and Professor of Psychology at George Washington University, Dr. Bowleg views this early introduction to intersectionality as a major influence in her early career and fundamental to her current research on HIV.