Staff Profiles

Tanja Smith

Senior Manager, Laboratory Operations

Tanja Smith is the Senior Manager of Laboratory Operations at the Allen Institute for Immunology. She joined the Institute in October of 2018 as a consultant to help set up the lab, manage laboratory operations, and establish clinical sample handling processes. She subsequently transitioned into the role full-time in February of 2019. 

Prior to joining the Allen Institute, Tanja was the Associate Director of the high-throughput Next Generation Sequencing Laboratory at the New York Genome Center, where she was responsible for the operation, leadership and administration of the sequencing facility. She joined the center in 2012 to set up its pilot lab, and rapidly grew the lab and team into the existing high throughput sequencing lab with a capacity to sequence more than 50K whole genomes along with thousands of exomes and transcriptomes while meeting GCLP requirements.

Tanja started her career as a Research Associate at Merck/Rosetta Inpharmatics in Seattle, where she was part of the Gene Expression laboratory and processed samples for various microarray platforms. In 2007, Merck decided to add sequencing services, and Tanja helped develop sequencing assays on the Solexa/Illumina platform.  She was an integral part in building the new sequencing laboratory and eventually became the manager of the sequencing laboratory. 

Tanja obtained her Bachelor of Science in Biology from Bowie State University in Maryland.