Dr. Mary Loveless Named Director of Baylor Research

Baylor School Headmaster Scott Wilson has named current faculty member Dr. Mary Loveless to serve as the Director of Baylor Research, an advanced science and engineering program.  Loveless has a B.S. in computer science and computer engineering and both an M.S. and a Ph.D. in biomedical engineering.

Supported by the $15 million Weeks Science Endowment, Baylor Research provides an opportunity for students to work along-side trained research scientists and to pursue real-world research in either engineering, environmental science, or molecular biology.   After successfully completing their coursework and presenting their college-level work in local, regional, or national venues, students graduate with the special designation of a Research Scholar.  The program has enabled the school to attract talented and highly-trained faculty, to purchase advanced lab and engineering equipment, and both to educate students through techniques widely used in professional labs and offices and to equip them for genuine research of their own.

Joining Loveless in the Baylor Research labs are recently hired faculty members Dr. R. Antonio Herrera and Doctoral candidate Ben Holt. Herrera has a B.S. in Molecular Biology and a Ph.D. in Biology.  Holt has a BS in Biology and will soon complete his Ph.D. in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology.

The change comes on the heels of the announcement that the Baylor Esoteric and Molecular Lab (BEML), created in 2020 to respond to urgent regional laboratory needs related to COVID-19, has been restructured as Athena Esoterix, LLC and will be located in the current BEML location in the Tennessee Aquarium Conservation Institute (TNACI) in Chattanooga adjacent to Baylor School’s campus. 

Established by former Baylor School faculty members Dr. Elizabeth Forrester and Dr. Dawn Richards, the lab is the first of its kind in this area. Athena Esoterix specializes in advanced molecular detection and clinical metagenomics and aims to expand access in our region to state-of-the-art precision medicine and preventive and diagnostic genomic testing.

“We could not be prouder of these two remarkable scientists and to have helped them launch the Baylor Esoteric and Molecular Lab.  While they have been called to a new venture beyond our gates, we celebrate that accomplishment and take pride in the lineage of Athena.  This portends even greater things for biomedical research in this region,” said Wilson.