Kate Biberdorf, PhD on Women She Admires

February 15, 2019

Headshot of Kate Biberdorf

Don't miss Kate Biberdorf at the 2019 Simmons Leadership Conference!

Kate Biberdorf, PhD, also known as "Kate the Chemist," is an award-winning instructor of general chemistry at The University of Texas at Austin. In her additional role as Director of Demonstrations and Outreach in the Department of Chemistry, Biberdorf has developed a series of fascinating demos that have been featured on CNN, The Discovery Channel, NBC Nightly News, and The Late Show with Stephen Colbert.

Which female leader do you most admire and why? 

Ruth Bader Ginsburg, the Notorious R.B.G. I think about her story frequently: a brilliant, fiery woman who refused to allow her gender to limit her career path. She used her skills to methodically attack laws that enforced traditional gender roles, and my generation is reaping the benefits of her life's work. 

What’s the best piece of career advice you’ve gotten along the way?

"Try. Just do your best." I try to be a good scientist, I try to be a good professor, I try to be a good friend/wife. At the end of the day, nothing else really matters. 

If you could dine with anyone, past or present, with whom would you dine and what would you like to ask him or her? 

I would like to dine with Hertha Ayrton and ask, "You were the first woman allowed to present your research for the Royal Society in 1904. How did the audience receive your lecture, and what did you learn from that experience?"

Fill in the blank. People would be surprised to know that I…

Used to be a fitness instructor. I loved to teach kickboxing classes — it was incredibly rewarding to take part in someone else's fitness journey.


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Valerie Plame

Simmons Leadership Conference

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