Graduate Alumni Spotlight



Maggie Taylor

Maggie Taylor is a PhD student in the Department of Philosophy at the University of Colorado, Boulder. She holds an M.A. in Public Policy with a concentration in Philosophy and Social Policy from the George Washington University, and a B.A. in Government and Public Policy from the University of Baltimore. Maggie’s research interests are in ethical theory, applied ethics, and epistemology. In her master’s thesis, “Too Close To The Knives: Children’s Rights, Parental Authority, and Best Interests in the Context of Elective Pediatric Surgeries,” Maggie developed a novel conception of the best interest standard for use in medical decision making for pediatric patients. She has also completed work on the moral grounds of parental duty and the duties of grown children to their parents. Her current research concerns mental illness, rationality, and the capacity for autonomous decision making. 





Liza Dawson

Liza Dawson is a 2017 graduate of the Philosophy and Social Policy (PSP) program and her thesis concerned the ethical rationale for oversight of research with human biological specimens. Liza has been working in bioethics and science policy for over 18 years. She obtained her PhD from Johns Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health, conducting on research on molecular virology of HIV-1.  While at Hopkins, she became involved in bioethics and was a Research Associate in the Johns Hopkins Phoebe R. Berman Bioethics Institute, working on a number of interdisciplinary projects including ethical and policy issues in stem cell research, history of clinical trials, and the ethics of global health research.  She has since worked in human research protections, science policy and bioethics at a major federal agency and has been involved in research consultations and working groups addressing clinical research in low and middle income countries and in the US.  She is currently the chair of the Human Studies Review Board of the Environmental Protection Agency and an active participant in the Society for Clinical Trials, the American Society for Bioethics and Humanities, and Public Responsibility in Medicine and Research.  She has authored a number of publications on ethical issues in clinical research and is the Chief of Bioethics, Institututional Review Board Chair at Walter Reed Army Institute of Research.