As the Director of Human Factors Engineering (HFE), Leah ensures that sound human factors practices are employed during the entire design process for THRIVE’s clients. She has extensive experience leading and strategizing Human Factors activities across the aviation and medical device industries, helping to develop products spanning flight decks, adaptive learning applications, adaptive automation, drug delivery devices, web-based software applications, renal dialysis, acute renal replacement systems, pharmacy compounding and filling machines, pharmaceutical drugs, and drug container platforms. Leah is responsible for establishing THRIVE’s Human Factors Engineering operating procedures and how the team conducts human factors activities to ensure products are safe, effective, and easy to use.
After graduating from the University of Illinois with a Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology and a Master’s Degree in Human Factors, Leah worked for half a decade at Aptima, a user-centered design and engineering company, as a Human Factors Scientist and Capability Lead. A role in which she oversaw the long-term planning, technical development, and business development of the corporate Advanced Learning Management capability. Following that experience, Leah spent eight years with Baxter Healthcare as a Senior Principal Human Factors Engineer, leading Human Factors Engineering activities across multiple therapy areas in cross-functional program teams for innovating new and improving existing medical products. She also interacted with product stakeholders to identify human factors engineering opportunities and develop appropriate solutions and strategies. Over the course of her career in HFE, Leah has become particularly adept at mentoring early career professionals from both the technical human factors and the professional development perspectives, engaging with customers and stakeholders, identifying critical user needs and insights, collaborating with a variety of functions to solve complex challenges, conducting the gamut of human factors and usability engineering studies as well as developing and submitting successful usability files to the FDA and other regulatory bodies and looking at the full spectrum of an HFE program to make it fire on all cylinders.
Leah enjoys baking, cooking and the science behind it, and bowling. In fact, Leah even bowled a perfect game with a score of 300 before! Outside of work, Leah is a Mom to a young, energetic daughter who keeps her busy! Before college, she was a professional dancer, trained in both classical ballet and modern dance. Professionally, Leah stumbled into Human Factors at the University of Illinois. She got hooked on the psychology of it after being introduced to the critical role human factors engineering plays in the aviation industry. In her words, Leah “forgets that she does this for a living” because she loves what she does and is fulfilled by designing and developing innovative healthcare solutions that impact lives.