IMR's Women in Science, Part 5- Deena Crossmore

We conclude our recognition of International Women in Science Day by featuring IMR’s Senior Quality Manager, Deena Crossmore. Deena may have been destined for a career in science since she was born into a family of engineers, so science was always a topic of discussion. Her interest in the sciences was piqued when her father let her tag along when he would go to the research lab on weekends to check on his experiments.

These experiences led her to enroll in the Textiles and Fiber Science program at University of Wisconsin-Madison. This field of study incorporated many different scientific disciplines: chemistry, polymer science and textile/fiber manufacturing. Deena was made aware of summer internships at Cornell University, which she enjoyed tremendously. After getting hooked on Ithaca, she enrolled in the Cornell Master’s in Fiber Science program, minoring in Chemical Engineering. After graduation, Deena ran the R & D lab for a monofilament extrusion facility where she was introduced to the Quality field. At the time, ISO9000 was becoming the standard certification of excellence throughout the manufacturing industry.

When Deena joined IMR Test Labs in Ithaca as Quality Manager, it was a small, single site materials testing laboratory, with just 17 employees. However, the skills she had developed in the manufacturing industry helped IMR to achieve and sustain compliance with ISO17025 (then Guide 25), the laboratory industry equivalent to ISO9000. She now serves as Senior Quality Manager and is involved in the development and execution of safety and quality programs throughout IMR’s global labs. IMR has a very large number of certifications from OEM’s across many industries, who rely on IMR to test their suppliers’ products to ensure they meet manufacturer’s specs.

Deena knows not everyone had the benefit of growing up in a scientific family, but her advice to girls or young women interested in studying the sciences apply across all situations. She advises that “the material you study will be hard at times, just don’t give up! You will learn something new every day working in the sciences.” Her approach was to ask questions until she understood and apply adequate time to study. Deena’s summer internship at Cornell was life-changing and gave her real-world experience and solidified her decision to go to graduate school.

It’s rare to have someone like Deena, who has been through IMR’s international expansion, lab acquisitions, and testing capabilities growth in her long career here. #WomenInScience