Stephanie Flores Joins ICIS as Co-Managing Director: A New Era of Leadership Unveiled for the International Cytokine & Interferon Society

Stephanie Flores with her husband on a visit to the Netherlands. Stephanie's office is in San Francisco, USA.

The International Cytokine & Interferon Society (ICIS) is embarking on an exciting new chapter with the appointment of Stephanie Flores as Co-Managing Director alongside Joan Oefner. This strategic move, announced by ICIS President Sarah Gaffen, reflects a commitment to fortify the organization’s resources, enhance member engagement, and explore new avenues for growth.

As ICIS has grown, the need for additional resources became apparent to ensure the continued delivery of exceptional member experiences and achievement of organizational goals. The collaboration between Joan Oefner and Stephanie Flores as Co-Managing Directors is poised to bring about positive changes, including increased support for the Council and committees, improved member outreach, and the pursuit of new revenue-generating opportunities to increase Student/Postdoc Travel Awards funding.

Stephanie Flores brings an impressive background to her role, with over two decades of experience in non-profit management. Notably, she spent 15 years at CASSS, a scientific society in the biopharmaceutical development field, where she served as Executive Director. During her tenure, Stephanie played a pivotal role in transforming the organization, implementing strategic plans, and significantly increasing revenues from $1.2 to $4.5 million. Her track record demonstrates a keen understanding of organizational dynamics and a proven ability to drive positive change.

In her new role, Stephanie will focus on the leadership and governance of ICIS. This includes providing advice and support to key committees such as the Council and Executive Committees, Nominating, Finance, and Membership & Communications Committees. Her proactive approach is evident as she plans to conduct a listening tour over the coming months to better understand the organization. In addition to speaking with Council members and key volunteers, she is also interested in hearing the perspectives of other ICIS members. “I want to know about your engagement with ICIS, your priorities and perceptions, and your aspirations for the organization.” says Stephanie. “Please view my calendar ( to select a time that is convenient for us to speak. I will report my findings back to the Council at their next meeting.”  This will allow Joan Oefner, the ICIS Managing Director since 2017, to focus more time on development, fund raising and the Annual Meeting.

A notable aspect of ICIS, as highlighted by Joan Oefner, is its unique ability to maintain a familial atmosphere despite its expansive and multidisciplinary nature. With over 1,200 members, this tight-knit, collegial spirit remains a hallmark of the organization. Joan and Stephanie express their eagerness to collaborate, supporting the ICIS community and guiding it towards a thriving future. With Stephanie in California and Joan in Germany, ICIS further enhances its ability to be responsive to member needs. This geographic diversity aligns with the global nature of ICIS, emphasizing its commitment to serving an international community of professionals.

Stephanie Flores L Joan Oefner ICIS Co Managing Directors

Stephanie’s extensive experience, coupled with her commitment to understanding and serving the ICIS community, positions her as a key driver in the society’s continued success and growth. As ICIS navigates the dynamic landscape of cytokine and interferon research, the collaborative leadership of Joan Oefner and Stephanie Flores marks a promising chapter in the organization’s journey.

For those interested in connecting with Joan Oefner and Stephanie Flores, contact them via email at [email protected] and [email protected], respectively. The ICIS community is invited to reach out and be part of the exciting developments under the guidance of this enhanced leadership team.