PHILLIP B. DANIELSON
Dr. Phillip B. Danielson is a University of Denver Professor in the Department of Biological Sciences, an adjunct in the Sturm College of Law, and a Fellow at the Center for Forensic Science Research and Education. He studied at the University of Tokyo’s Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics and the University of Colorado at Boulder’s Department of Molecular, Cellular, and Developmental Biology. He oversees a forensic research and development program, serves as a forensic expert in criminal proceedings, and is a member of the Organization of Scientific Area Committees for Biology and DNA, which promulgates standards for the U.S. forensic community. In addition to forensic science, he teaches courses in Molecular Diagnostics, Infectious Disease, and Immunology. Dr. Danielson specializes in the application of genomic and proteomic technologies to real world challenges. His research has been funded by the National Institute of Justice, the U.S. Army, the National Science Foundation, the National Institutes of Health, and the Center for Missing and Exploited Children. Dr. Danielson’s research has been featured in books, academic and professional journals, as well as the popular press, including the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, Forensic Science International, The Scientist magazine, Law Enforcement Technology magazine, and USA Today.
Dr. Simon Ford has been actively involved in forensic DNA technology since its first introduction into the U.S. legal system in the late 1980s. Educated in the United Kingdom, Dr. Ford received a Ph.D. in Biochemistry from the University of Bristol in 1981. He has been principal of Lexigen Science and Law Consultants in San Francisco for over 25 years. In the late 1980s and early 1990s, Dr. Ford testified in many of the early admissibility hearings concerning the first generation of DNA tests, such as RFLP testing, DQ-alpha (DQA1), and Polymarker. Over a 10-year period, Dr. ford worked on the case of Brian Kelly, the first person in Scotland to be convicted based on DNA evidence (RFLP), culminating in testimony before the Scottish Supreme Court and Mr. Kelly’s conviction being quashed. At the moment, Dr. Ford works mainly as a trial preparation consultant, evaluating DNA evidence on a case-by-case basis and assisting trial attorneys in developing the issues specific to their cases. Recently, Dr. Ford has focused on cases with problem samples, such as enhanced low template DNA testing. In collaboration with scientists at Forensic Bioinformatics in Daytona, Ohio, Dr. Ford has developed software tools for detecting improper manipulation of electronic data to uncover instances of data fraud in forensic NA testing laboratories.
DAN E. KRANE
Dr. Dan E. Krane is a Professor in the Department of Biological Sciences and the Department of Computer Science at Wright State University in Dayton, Ohio, where he has served three terms as the President of the Faculty. He is also the chair of the Ohio Faculty Council, which represents the interests of all faculty at the state universities of Ohio. He spent last year working in the president’s office at the University of Notre Dame as a fellow of the American Council on Education. He graduated with a Bachelor’s degree for a double major in Biology and chemistry from John Carrol University and a Ph.D. in Biochemistry from the Cell and Molecular Biology Department at the Pennsylvania State University in 1990. He has also done post-doctoral studies in the Genetics Department of the Washington University’s Medical School and in the Department of Organismic and Evolutionary Biology at Harvard University. He has published over 50 peer-reviewed papers in the areas of population genetics and molecular evolution and is the lead author of the best-selling undergraduate textbook in the field of bioinformatics (“Fundamental Concepts in Bioinformatics”). Many of his publications are directly related to forensic DNA testing, particularly in the areas of using DNA profiles to generate investigative leads (i.e. familial searching) and increasing the objectivity and sensitivity of current DNA typing methodologies. He has testified in more than 100 criminal cases (in more than 23 different states, as well as in Australia, in Belfast Crown Court in R. v. Sean Hoey, in Oxford Crown Court, and in the Central Criminal Court of London) since 1991 as an expert for both the prosecution and defense in the areas of population genetics, molecular biology, and bioinformatics. Dr. Krane is also the president and co-founder of Forensic Bioinformatic Services, Inc. (www.bioforensics.com), where he has overseen the development and implementation of software designed to automatically and objectively review STR DNA testing results. Two different governors of the Commonwealth of Virginia have appointed him to Virginia’s Scientific Advisory Committee—a blue-ribbon panel of 12 experts that oversees the policies and practices of Virginia’s full-service Department of Forensic Science. In that capacity, he has chaired the subcommittees on familial searching and Y-STR validation and testing protocols.
J. Christopher McKee is the Director of the Schaden Experiential Learning and Public Service Programs at the University of Colorado School of Law. An Adjunct Professor at CU Law since 2009, Mr. McKee teaches Advanced Evidence, specifically focused on forensic science issues, and has directed the Appellate Advocacy Clinic. Mr. McKee is a nationally recognized litigator and lecturer on forensic science evidentiary issues. As the former Special Counsel to the Director of the Public Defender Service for the District of Columbia (PDS), Mr. McKee served as a senior advisor to the Director and all other divisions of PDS regarding potential challenges to forensic evidence. In addition to his advisory and supervisory roles, Mr. McKee served as lead or special counsel in cases involving complex forensic issues, as well as maintaining his own personal caseload of homicide and sexual assault cases. While at PDS from 200 until 2009, Mr. McKee represented hundreds of clients before both trial and appellate courts in the District of Columbia. Mr. McKee has litigated cases involving challenges to DNA, Firearm Toolkmark Patterns, Fingerprint Patterns, Arson Evidence, Sexual Assault Injuries, Forensic Pathology, Toxicology, Drugs/Narcotics Evidence, and Breath Alcohol Detection, as well as various other forensic disciplines and evidence. Prior to joining PDS, Mr. McKee served as an Assistant Public Defender in DeKalb County, Georgia, where he spent three years handling a wide range of trial and appellate cases before State and County courts. Mr. McKee co-founded Forensic Defense Strategies, LLP, a legal consulting firm based in Boulder, Colorado, that assists criminal defense attorneys with understanding and litigating forensic evidence in their cases.
Maneka Sinha is Special Counsel for Forensics at the Public Defender Service for the District of Columbia (PDS), where she manages PDS’s Forensic Practice Group, supervises the agency’s forensic science litigation, and trains trial lawyers on forensic science and forensic science litigation. She previously served as a supervising attorney and staff attorney in the Trial Division at PDS. In 2015, Ms. Sinha also served as a Brian Roberts International Fellow for the International Legal Foundation in the West Bank, where she trained and supervised Palestinian public defenders. Ms. Sinha has a J.D. from NYU Law School and a B.S. in mechanical engineering from UC Berkeley.
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