A Cinderella Story of the IRB World: An Interview with Lori Roesch

By Maeve Luthin, JD, professional development manager

Welcome to another installment of our featured member interviews where we introduce you to our members—individuals who work to advance ethical research on a daily basis. Over the course of the past few months we have been shining a spotlight on members of the Certified Institutional Review Board (IRB) Professional (CIP®) and Certified Professional IACUC Administrator (CPIA®) Councils. Please read on to learn more about their professional experiences, how membership helps connect them to a larger community, and what goes on behind the scenes in their lives!

Today we’d like to introduce you to Lori Roesch, senior IRB administrator at the Milwaukee VA Medical Center.   

Maeve Luthin (ML): When and why did you join the field?
Lori Roesch (LR): I unknowingly joined the field in September 1995, before the human subject protections profession was so well-defined. At that time I had been promoted from medical secretary to administrative assistant for the director of research, who also happened to be the IRB chair (which today would be considered a conflict of interest). I had experience coordinating our IACUC, which qualified me for the promotion. Without formal training or orientation, I “inherited” a 150 protocol IRB, to which 10 percent of my time was allotted. This IRB had undergone an FDA audit in February 1995 and was issued a “483” with three violations. One of my first duties was to send correspondence on behalf of our IRB chair to both OHRP and FDA—I had no idea what that meant!

The views, opinions and positions expressed by these authors and blogs are theirs and do not necessarily represent that of the Bioethics Research Library and Kennedy Institute of Ethics or Georgetown University.