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Todd Blakely Jr.

Graduate Student, Biochemistry

  • Todd is a graduate student studying Biochemistry. Before joining the Zanic Lab, Todd obtained his B.S. Biochemistry at the University of Puget Sound. He was also a Northwestern University NUIN Post-Baccalaureate Scholar. He joined the lab in May 2022, and he uses biochemical and in vitro tools to explore the mechanism by which SSNA1 attenuates microtubule dynamics. A fun fact about him is that he was an all-conference football player and a competitive lumberjack while pursuing his undergraduate degree.

Honors and Awards


  • Gilliam Fellowship Finalist
  • Vanderbilt’s Suit & Tie Unsung Hero Award


  • NIH Diversity Supplement


  • Keith Berry Memorial Scholarship


  • McCormick Scholar Award recipient
  • John M. Fluke Research Scholar


2021 – Present

  • Graduate Assistant to Senior Advisor to Chancellor of Diversity Equity and Inclusion

2021 – Present

  • Micro-Communities in STEM

2021 – 2023

  • Public Relations Chair for Nashville NOBCChE Chapter

Organization Involvement

2021 – Present

  • National Organization for Advancement of Black Chemists and Biochemists

2021 – Present

  • Omega Psi Phi Fraternity Inc.

2019 – Present

  • Organization for Black Graduates and Professional Students

Research Positions

2020 – 2021

  • Post-Baccalaureate at Northwestern University


  • Associate Scientist at Abbott

2019 – 2020

  • Process Chemist at Pfanstiehl Inc.


  • Laboratory Technician at Engis Corp.

2015 – 2019

  • Undergraduate Researcher at University of Puget Sound