Meet the Vizgen Team: Joanna Joy

Q&A with Joanna Joy, Lab Manager & Histology Lead


What is your favorite quote?

“No being is so important that he can usurp the rights of another.” –Captain Jean-Luc Picard

What do you do at Vizgen?

I coordinate Vizgen’s Histology activities along with performing general laboratory management duties.

How did you end up at Vizgen and why did you choose to join the team?

I received a couple of phone calls from a recruiter that I decided to wait to call them back. Literally the day I was going to call them, they called me and got the ball rolling. This position was exactly what I was looking for: I wanted to expand my laboratory management role, but I still wanted to be able to use my Histology expertise.

What are your credentials and past experiences for working in your position?

I worked exclusively in several Histology labs from 2009 until I started at Vizgen in 2020. From 2013 to 2020 I was a Histology Manager for a small core Histology lab at MIT. I have experience working with human tissues and numerous animal species. This experience was crucial to getting my position at Vizgen.

Can you share a turning point or defining moment in your work in your career?

The 2008 Recession – I graduated in 2008 with a Master’s degree in Forensic Science. Not a great year for trying to join entry-level forensics positions (most are with state and local governments) as there were hiring freezes everywhere. I stuck around Richmond, VA for a year working a low-level lab technician job when I decided to return to the New England area. I really needed a job, any job, so I applied to several in the Boston area. I landed a position in a human skin pathology lab initially as their immunohistochemistry technician and that’s where I began learning more Histology techniques. And that is how I ended up working 11 years in strictly Histology jobs. My position at Vizgen is the first time in a long time where I am not working in Histology 100% of the time.

What do you enjoy doing when you are not working?

I used to knit and cross-stitch before my carpal tunnel became too severe. Now I make fancy bookmarks with ribbon and other jewelry bits-and-bobs. I spend most of my non-work time taking care of my two kids, a four-year-old and an almost two-year-old.

Interested in working with Joanna and the entire Vizgen Team? Visit our careers page to review current openings.