Recorded: 17 Jan 2003
And another person at the time was Denise Galloway who was probably the first person other than Joe that I met when I got to Cold Spring Harbor. And Denise was a born and bred New Yorker. And so I think the first weekend after I arrived, she said, “Come on, we’re gong to the city,” So we drove into New York which you would think would be a totally crazy thing to do. And of course Denise knew exactly where to park in New York so we found parking and so she was fantastic in getting me into New York cause I’m a great city person and a culture person and so there was this fantastic environment out there which I really loved and spent as much time as I possibly could experiencing.
Then as soon as I got a car Denise said, “Right we’re driving into New York.” So I drove in New York and discovered that the traffic was just like Sydney traffic actually so it wasn’t that bad but you know would I have done it if I hadn’t had Denise there to encourage me? So Denise and I were in the same lab and she had a technician for a while but we—by and large always got on really well—different personalities but many similar interests. And Denise I’ve certainly stayed friendly with every since and we see each other occasionally not that often. Send each other Christmas letters and things but—so she was good. She was a really good social anchor for me I think at the lab.
Merilyn Sleigh is a pharmacologist, molecular biologist and dean in the Department of Life Sciences at the University of New South Wales. After completing her Ph.D. at the University of Sydney in pharmacology and another PhD in molecular biology at the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organization (CSIRO), she came to Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory to work under Joe Sambrook as a postdoctoral fellow researching the protein production of SV40. She returned to CSIRO, establishing one of the first laboratories in Australia using genetic engineering approaches to study influenza virus structure, evolution and gene regulation. She has become involved in developing the biotechnological industry in Australia. Sleigh is founding director of the Australian Biotechnology Association and is currently Chief Executive of EvoGenix, a start-up biotechnology company located in Australia.