Who's Who of Professional Women


An expert in virology, Dr. Sara C. Johnson fell in love with microbiology and immunology in college and that, coupled with her fascination with highly-infectious agents, has led to a long and prestigious career with Clinical Research Management. As a research microbiologist for the agency, she is responsible for research that supports the development of vaccines, therapeutics and model development for those products. She loves her job, and strongly believes in their mission and in what they do.

Dr. Johnston prepared for her endeavors by earning a Bachelor of Science in biology, summa cum laude, at Utica College in 2004, and a Master of Science and a PhD in microbiology and immunology at the University of Rochester Medical Center in 2007 and 2009, respectively. She is certified in hazardous materials operations, positive pressure certified, biological personal reliability certified and BSL-3, BSL-4, and HIPAA certified. In addition, she is a certified rescue technician.

In recognition of her achievements in her field, Dr. Johnston has received several scholarships from Utica College, including a president’s scholarship, a Ralph F. Strebel Scholarship, and the Ralph Fl. Strebel Prize. She was also on the Empire 8 President’s List. She attributes her success to her laid-back nature and ability to manage a lot of tasks at the same time.

When Dr. Johnston isn’t working to advance the science world, she enjoys being active in her community. She is currently an instructor of Tae Kwon Do and women’s self-defense at Han Mi Martial Arts in Maryland. Further, she is a volunteer firefighter, an EMT and rescue technician for the county of advanced technical rescue in Frederick, Md., and a volunteer KYOBUM instructor. In her free time, she plays drum and guitar, soccer, and lacrosse.

Looking to the future, Dr. Johnston intends to be overseeing a program and guiding and teaching those coming into the field.


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