Forensic Science Speaker Series

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Our speaker series brings internationally known experts in forensic science to campus every semester.


none scheduled


"Touch No Evil: The Truth about Contact DNA"  

May 21, 2014, 3:30-4:30 at the Santa Clara County Crime Laboratory, First Floor Training Room.  Presenter:  Jocelyn Weart, Supervising Criminalist. 

"Mathematics of Forensic DNA Investigations"

Thursdays March 6 & 13 and April 10 & 17: 3:00 - 4:30pm held at UC Berkeley Boalt Hall, Room 10. Bancroft at College Ave. Berkeley, CA 94720.
Dr. Charles Brenner - Forensic Mathematics- DNA View, Berkeley, CA.

The Real CSI

Tuesday April 10th: 5:30 - 6:30, MH520
Sgt. Bruce Wiley- Office of the District Attorney- Criminal Investigator at County of Santa Clara.

Alex Calder

Alex Calder, a Bio-Pharma Specialist- Proteomics Technologies, at Bio-Rad Laboratories will be delivering a presentation on Career Science 101: How to get a job.  This will be part of the FS 169 Senior Seminar Course on Wednesday, March 19th from 5:00 - 5:45pm, Room SH 413.

John Tonkyn

Wednesday, May 2 , 2012 | 3:00pm-5:00pm | CASA Student Success Center John Tonkyn, Ph.D., ”Missing Persons Investigations” 

Charles Brenner 

Cristián Orrego Benaventa

Wednesday, February 29, 2012 | 3:00pm-5:00pm | SPX 11 Cristian Orrego Benavente, PhD, ” Forensic Genetic Evidence as Part of Investigations and Decisions by the International Criminal Tribunals”
Director of Forensic Projects at the Human Rights Center, UC Berkeley

About the Speaker
Dr. Cristián Orrego is currently the Director of Forensic Projects at the Human Rights Center (HRC) at University of California, Berkeley School of Law. He was an Assistant Laboratory Director and Supervisor at the California Department of Justice, Jan Bashinski DNA Laboratory in Richmond, California, from 1999 to 2011. He was appointed Science Advisor to the Presidential Commission on Policies for Human Rights of the Government of Chile in May 2006, and subsequently member of an International Commission of Experts for the Legal Medical Service, Ministry of Justice, Government of Chile, from May 2007 – February 2010. He is a founding member of the volunteer organization, the Alliance of Forensic Scientists for Human Rights and Humanitarian Investigations. As such, he works closely with the El Salvador DNA Reunification Project in support of the Pro Búsqueda Association of Missing Children of El Salvador, a collaboration between the Human Rights Center, University of California at Berkeley and Pro Búsqueda. Cristián Orrego is also a member of the Advisory Board, Human Rights Center, UC Berkeley.

Gloria Nusse

Wednesday, November 2, 2011 | 4:30pm-7:15pm | Clark Hall 218
"Shooting Incident Reconstruction” 
Forensic Artist – Facial Reconstruction

About the Speaker
Gloria received her B.F.A. from Witchita State University and a M.A. in Biology from San Francisco State University. She is a scientific and forensic artist who has worked for well known scientific, cultural and historical agencies. Her forensic artwork has aided with the identification of several individuals and has been widely featured on television and in print media.  She currently teaches at SFSU.

Mark Bennett 

Thursday, October 27, 2011 | 10:30am-11:45pm | MQH 324
Mark Bennett, ” Shooting Incident Reconstruction”
Criminalist, Oakland Police Department

About the Speaker
Mark graduated from University of London in 1989 with a Masters Degree in Forensic Science. He worked for the Metropolitan Police Forensic Science Laboratory in London, where he trained as a firearms examiner in the “Gun Room” firearms unit. He has worked as a firearms examiner for the Florida Department of Law Enforcement and is currently the Supervising Criminalist in firearms at the Oakland Police Department Crime Laboratory. He is a member of the Association of Firearms and Toolmark Examiners and the California Association of Criminalists. He has worked on many hundreds of murder cases including the murder of police Sergeant Dale Green in Tallahassee Florida, the “Black Muslim Bakery” murder of journalist Chauncey Bailey and the March 21st 2009 murders of four Oakland Police Officers.

Charles Carmody

Thursday, March 10, 2011 | 1:30pm-2:30pm | Santa Clara County Crime Lab
Charles Carmody, PhD, “Getting It Wrong: How to Misinterpret DNA Numbers”
Professor of Biology, Carleton University, Ottawa, Ontario
Instructor, Northeast Regional Forensic Institute University at Albany

Dr. George Carmody from Carleton University, Ottawa, Canada will deliver a seminar hosted by SJSU at the Santa Clara County Crime Laboratory on the basic principles of statistics and probability relevant to key concepts in population genetics and profile frequency estimates of PCR-based/discrete allele systems. Among the topics will be approaches to statistical analysis of STR typing as is routinely performed in casework and data bank profiling. Time permitting, additional topics will include discussions on parentage testing, kinship and mass disaster victim identification. This seminar is intended for criminalists involved in the analysis of biological evidence as well as students and others interested in understanding the underpinnings of forensic DNA statistics.

About the Speaker
Dr. Carmody’s research interests include genetic variation of DNA and proteins, with respect to population differentiation, molecular evolution, and speciation; statistical and computer methods for determining genetic identity, kinship and the measurement of genetic subdivision of human populations using microsatellite (STR) loci. He is a member of Genetics Society of America, the Statistical Society of Ottawa, is Vice-Chair for the R.C.M.P. National DNA Databank Advisory Committee, is on the N.I.J. WTC Kinship and Data Analysis Planning Panel (‘KADAP’), the New York State DNA Subcommittee, Commission on Forensic Science, and is part of the Katrina Victim DNA Identification Expert Group, among others. Dr. Carmody’s work has been published in the Journal of Forensic Science and Science to name a few. Dr. Carmody gives statistics-based lectures throughout the United States and Canada and is often requested to testify in court. Dr. Carmody received both his A.B. in Chemistry and Ph.D. in Zoology from Columbia University. He did a post-doc at the University of Chicago in Genetics and has been a Senior Fellow in Genetics at University of Nottingham, and a Visiting Researcher or Professor at National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences, University of Hawaii and University of Texas Houston.