Amy Ross, PhD, a USC trustee and alumna, was recently appointed vice chair of the USC Health System Board, of which she has been a member since 2021.

In this role, she will work closely with Leonard D. Schaeffer, chair of the board, to provide leadership and guidance on the health system’s strategic plan.

In an announcement released on Tuesday, Nov. 7, Schaeffer said that Ross has been “integral to the development of the governance structure for university clinical services, through her work as chair of the quality and safety committee and through serving on the board’s executive compensation committee.”

Ross, a retired biotechnology executive, also serves on the boards of the USC Verdugo Hills Hospital Foundation and USC Arcadia Hospital.

One of Ross’s most significant contributions to the university happened in 1991, when she co-founded the USC Lambda LGBTQ+ Alumni Association, and later served as its president from 1994 to 1996. In 2014, Ross made USC history as the first openly LGBTQ+ president of the USC Alumni Association Board of Governors.

Ross is also a highly accomplished medical researcher and educator.

“Amy’s illustrious career in the field of cancer diagnostics spanned more than 25 years,” Schaeffer said. “She is the author of more than 75 scientific publications and the holder of three U.S. patents.”

In addition to her work with USC, Ross was senior vice president of scientific affairs at the cell therapy company Nexell Therapeutics and an associate biologist at the California Institute of Technology.

She is a founding member of the National Organization of Gay and Lesbian Scientists and Technical Professionals, which, in 2014, presented her with the Walt Westman Award for her dedication and commitment to the organization’s mission.

Ross has a bachelor’s degree in psychobiology from Cal State Northridge and holds a doctorate in experimental pathology from the Keck School of Medicine of USC.

— Kate Faye