Melissa Binz

Melissa Binz

Vice President, Data Sciences Institute


How long have you been volunteering at CDISC?

Definitely for 16 Years with CDASH, pretty sure it’s closer to 20 with commenting/reviewing in the early days of SDTM and controlled terminology.

What encouraged you to volunteer your time and expertise with CDISC?

Firstly, I love to use my talents to make an impact and what better way to do that in our industry than to help steer effective and efficient data standards? Secondly, I am all about making life as easy as possible and am a firm believer in the power of standards to both lessen some of the cognitive burden of our work while making it easier to automate and move rapidly! Lastly, my fellow volunteers – so many friendships and great conversations about work & life over the years.

How did you begin working in clinical research and what did you want to be when you grew up?

Great questions! I wanted to be a math teacher! I actually did teach high school math for a very short time before a college friend, who also decided against teaching math in the long term, recruited me into my first clinical research job in a statistics department at a CRO and I found my forever industry.

You've worked on the CDASH team since its inception, do you have any special memories to share?

My full-time commitment to CDASH literally started when I was eight months pregnant and decided there was NO WAY I was letting my 4th pregnancy prevent me from getting to the inaugural face-to-face kick-off meeting in North Carolina! I hopped a plane from Philadelphia to Raleigh and made my way to a very packed auditorium where CDASH all began. That baby was born less than one month later and is now 16 years old! I am so glad to say that many of the folks that were there that day are still involved in CDASH or CDISC and there are many examples over the years where we have, as a group, all done fantastical feats to keep the standards moving & improving!

Please provide a tip that someone would find helpful in working with CDISC Standards.

Don’t forget to read the “lead in chapters” and text that comes before (or after) the metadata tables! Many volunteers over many years have spent many hours getting solid examples, explanations, and hot tips into those sections – let these sections of the standards and the volunteers’ efforts catapult you forward in your mastery of industry knowledge!