Director of the Gender Institute

Professor of History; 716-645-5200

Research Interests: 20th century United States History, African American History,  Gender and Sexuality, Social and Cultural History, and Urban History.


Deputy Director of the Gender Institute

SUNY Distinguished Professor; Department of Epidemiology and Environmental Health, Associate Dean for Faculty Affairs for the School of Public Health and Health Professions; 716-645-5200

Research Topics: cancer epidemiology, using epidemiologic tools to understand carcinogenesis at the population, individual, tissue and molecular levels in order to better prevent and control the disease. 

Megan Vaughan

Assistant to the Director of the Gender Institute

(she/her), 716-645-0280

Surabhi Pant

Gender Institute Graduate Assistant


PhD Candidate, Sociology

Research Interests: gender & development, environmental sociology, political economy, classical and contemporary theory, and ethnographic methods.

Former Directors, Deputy Directors & Co-Directors

Director 2017-2023

Professor of English

Carrie Tirado Bramen, PhD, was the Director of UB's Gender Institute for six years. Carrie lead the Institute through the Covid Pandemic, taking all programming online and increasing attendance and interest in feminist scholarship on campus when faculty, staff, and students were spread across the country due to quarantine and social distancing. She advocated for the Institute's largest increase in funding in the history of the Institute, and worked with the Executive Committee to increase awards to faculty and students. Carrie's time with the GI was capped off with the incredible Social Reproduction Series, bringing world renowned lecturers to campus to discuss housing, care-work, and more. 

Director 2011-2017

Professor, Departments of American Studies & Global Gender Sexuality Studies

Kari Winter.

Kari Winter, PhD, was the Director of UB's Gender Institute for six years. At the Institute, Winter organized or co-organized a dozen local, national, and international conferences and more than two hundred scholarly workshops, film screenings, festivals, and other events, including two Powwows in Vermont at the turn of this century.  She has created and raised funds for many undergraduate, graduate student, and faculty scholarships, fellowships, and awards.

Deputy Director 2012-2021

Vice Chair for Research Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, JSMBS

Glenna Bett.

Glenna Bett was the Deputy Director of the Gender Institute at UB for nine years. Dr. Bett launched a campus-wide research initiative on Sex, Gender, and Health. Dr. Bett's initiative futhered UB's position as a leader in evidence- based research on the impact of sex and gender on health. She believes that existing biomedical research has been undertaken on men and that the prevalence of diseases can be different between men and women, that the symptoms and progression of diseases may be different, and thus they may respond differently to treatments.

Deputy Director 2011-2012

Professor of Architecture at School of Architecture and Planning

Despina Stratigakos.

Despina Stratigakos PhD was the Deputy Director of the Gender Institute at UB for a year. She as an author and professor, focused her research on Women in architecture, that were historically seemingly erased or under-recognized from the profession.

Co-Director 2005-2011

Professor, Department of Oral Biology, School of Dental Medicine

Rosemary Dziak.

Dr. Dziak was Co-Director of the UB Gender Institute, focusing on expanding the role of gender in the different science disciplines. She believed that gender had become an increasingly important topic in the sciences because organizations as the National Institutes of Health are pushing for more studies on women's health. Her own research interests lie in Bone and Connective Tissues/Tissue Engineering ans physiological bone metabolism. She has since continued being part of the institute's executive committee.

Co-Director 2009-2010

Professor Emeritus, Department of Geography

Sharmistha Bagchi-Sen.

Bachi-Sen served as the Institute's Co-Director and promoted an entrepreneurial spirit. Her work continued to grow IREWG by organizing a biannual graduate student symposium on gender, as well as obtaining sponsors for the annual International Women's Film Festival. Bagchi-Sen has uses spatial methodologies in her research as an urban-economic geographer. Research Interests: Economic and urban geography; Innovation and industry studies; Foreign direct investment Biotech and bioenergy. 

Co-Director 2006-2009

Associate Professor Emerita, Department of Romance Languages and Literatures

Margarita Vargas.

Vargas, like many of the members of the Gender Institute, began as part of a junior faculty member on the first executive committee when the institute was formed. She says "it was a tremendous learning experience". She later took on the role of Co-Director, focusing her efforts on gender in the romance languages and giving women a larger voice and presence in English. Her own research interests include: Contemporary Spanish-American theatre; Mexican film; Feminism.

Co-Director 2003-2006

Professor Emeritus, Department of English

Barbara Bono.

During her time as Co-Director, Barabara Bono worked with the UB Office of Special Events for the [2004-05] Distinguished Speakers Series to bring in [UB Reads author] Barbara Ehrenreich. Her work is continued today as the Gender Institute continues to collaborate with many offices within UB to provide outside researchers the opportunity to lecture and provide new ideas in academia related to women and gender. Her research interests: Early Modern British literature; the dramatic literature of  Shakespeare and his  contemporaries; feminist and cultural materialist theory.

Co-Director 2001-2002

Senior Associate Dean for Faculty Affairs, Department of Pharmacology & Toxicology

Suzanne Laychock.

Suzanne Laychock was Co-Director of the UB Gender Institute for 2001 -2002. Her work pushed the Gender Institute beyond luncheons, and university centered workshops. Her focus was large scale collaborations such as 2001 Pan Am Women's Leadership Conference. IREWG became a strong driving force behind ambitious projects and gathering resource for all seeking to secure academic research scholarships. Dr. Laychock researches endocrine pharmacology with an emphasis on signal transduction mechanisms involved in insulin secretion and models of diabetes mellitus.

Co-Director 2000-2001

Microbiology and Immunology, UB Medicine and Biomedical Sciences

Bernice Noble.

Bernice Noble was a professor of microbiology and immunology at the University at Buffalo.  During her time at UB, Noble dedicated much of her time to advancing women’s careers.


Peggy Acara on left and Isabel Marcus on right.

(l) Peggy Acara,  (r) Isabel Marcus

Margaret (Peggy) Acara             
Pharmacology & Toxicology                      

Dr. Margaret (Peggy) Acara was a professor of pharmacology and toxicology, in the University at Buffalo's School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences, she co-founded the Institute for Research and Education on Women and Gender (1997) and went onto direct the Institute's research arm.

During her time at the Institute, Dr. Acara pushed for five research focuses, to provide information/data resources for; gender and violence, women's health, the impact of changing welfare laws, education on women and gender in the schools and feminist topics in the humanities. 

Isabel S. Marcus
(1997- 2003)
School of Law

Isabel Marcus was a beloved professor of law at the University at Buffalo, her focus on social progress and her expertise resonated with her works to co-found the Institute for Research and Education on Women and Gender (1997).

Marcus, as a Director at the Institute worked to provide assistance in the form of scholarships to further emphasizing feminist scholarship with an interdisciplinary focus.

Dr. Marcus in her lifetime, continued to advocate for women’s rights and international human rights in the US and abroad. Dr. Marcus established the Isabel S. Marcus International Research Fellowship supporting outstanding UB graduate students researching women's issues outside of the United States.