Dr. William D. Sansum, who brought renown to Santa Barbara in 1922 as the first physician in the U.S. to produce and administer life-saving insulin to patients with diabetes, founded the nonprofit organization in 1944.

Today, under the leadership of Ellen Goodstein, the William Sansum Diabetes Center remains an extraordinary place, where research, education and care have improved the lives of people worldwide who are impacted by this serious disease.

The Center has gained international recognition for its work to develop an artificial pancreas, its success in developing protocols to increase the incidence of healthy babies born to women with diabetes and its work with people with and at risk for type 2 diabetes. Physicians and researchers continue to develop new treatment protocols for people with diabetes. New drugs and medical devices are clinically tested to ensure their efficacy and safety.

It is our intention to use our past and present accomplishments to guide us into the future – to tap into the energy and commitment that made the William Sansum Diabetes Center what it is today – a worldwide leader in diabetes research, education and care.


About Us-2-HistoryDr. William D. Sansum at the time he established the Sansum Clinic at Cottage Hospital in 1928.


Dr. William David Sansum, founder of the William Sansum Diabetes Center, was born in 1880. He started pursuing his goal of being a doctor at Rush Medical College at the University of Chicago. Cottage Hospital’s board of trustees invited him to Santa Barbara to become the new Director of the Potter Metabolic Clinic.

While Dr. Sansum was pursuing diabetes research in the early 1920’s, other researches were doing the same and successfully treated animals and ultimately humans with an extract they developed. They named their extract “insulin”, from the Latin for “island”, referring to the Islets of Langerhans found in the pancreas. In Santa Barbara, Dr. Sansum decided to pursue the same direction— the production of insulin from animal pancreases. Researchers everywhere were trying to develop better methods and to increase purity and strength for use in humans with limited amounts of insulin available. On May 31, 1922; after two years of research the first American patient was injected with U.S.-made insulin at the Potter Clinic.

In 1928, Dr. Sansum decided to form his own clinic group with a staff of five. Later, Dr. Sansum was encouraged to build a clinic on Pueblo Street. Dr. Sansum retired from active practice in 1942, but continued his research efforts. In 1944 he founded the Sansum Clinic Foundation. Later the Foundation’s name was changed to Sansum Medical Research Foundation and to Sansum Diabetes Research Institute, and is currently the William Sansum Diabetes Center.

In 1947 Dr. Sansum began work on a new vision that was thirty years ahead of his time– pancreatic cell transplantation. A year later he suffered a stroke and died. After Dr. Sansum’s death, the clinic was reorganized and purchased by six of the doctors on the staff. The research foundation, headed by Dr. Alfred Koehler, continued to work on the projects that Dr. Sansum had been involved in.

In 1966 a two-story building that still houses the William Sansum Diabetes Center today was built with a gift from Mr. and Mrs. Harry Morrison and others. Full-scale diabetes research began soon thereafter in the Morrison Laboratories under Dr. Donald McMillan.

Although much has happened since 1920, one thing has not changed– the goal to cure diabetes, or at least to alleviate the problems caused by this devastating disease. The legacy continues today under the leadership of Ellen Goodstein, who was appointed Interim Executive Director in 2015.


staff and board photo 11.2015


Silvia Alvarez
Clinical Medical Assistant

Sandy Andrews, RD, CDE, CPT
Director of Education

Wendy Bevier, PhD
Clinical Research Associate

Paige Bradley
Clinical Research Assistant

Connor Bui
Clinical Research Assistant

Taylor Carson
Clinical Research Assistant

Kristin Castorino, DO
Research Physician

Mei Mei Church, NP
Clinical Research Nurse Practitioner

Mary Conneely
Diabetes Educator

Ada Conner
Director of Development

Donna Frase
Certified Clinical Research

Jeannine Glockler
Donor Development Associate

Ellen Goodstein
Executive Director

Miguel Grijalva
Building Maintenance

Tyler Jean
Clinical Research Assistant

Louise Keeler
Regulatory Assistant

David Kerr, MD FRCPE
Director of Research and Innovation

Hari Kota
Clinical Research Assistant

Jessica Lehner
Marketing and Communications Manager

Jenny Martinez
Project Coordinator

Leonie Mattison, MBA, DBA
Director of Clinical Research
Operations & Major Grants

Nicole Neal

Jordan Pinsker, MD
Senior Research Physician
Pediatric Endocrinologist

Benjamen Schoenberg
Project Coordinator

Stephanie Torres
Clinical Administrative Assistant

Mia Trautwein
Human Resources Director

Lydia Truong
Clinical Research Assistant

Adjunct Investigators

Eyal Dassau, PhD
Adjunct Senior Investigator
Research Associate, Bioengineering
Harvard University

Lauren Huyett
Adjunct Research Associate
Dept. of Chemical Engineering
University of California, Santa Barbara

Francis J. Doyle III, PhD
Adjunct Senior Investigator
Dean, John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences
Harvard University

Alejandro Jose Laguna Sanz
Adjunct Investigator
Department of Chemical Engineering
University of California, Santa Barbara

Dale E. Seborg,
Adjunct Senior Investigator
Professor Emeritus, Research Professor
Department of Chemical Engineering
University of California, Santa Barbara

Joon-Bok Lee, PhD
Adjunct Research Associate
Department of Chemical Engineering
University of California, Santa Barbara

Sunil A. Deshpande, PhD
Adjunct Investigator
Department of Chemical Engineering
University of California, Santa Barbara

Angelina Trujillo, MD, FACE
Adjunct Senior Investigator
Endocrinologist, Belle Mead, New Jersey

Ravi Gondhalekar, PhD
Adjunct Investigator
Department of Chemical Engineering
University of California, Santa Barbara

Adjunct Investigator
Department of Statistics and Applied Probability
University of California, Santa Barbara

Marcilio Da Silva
Adjunct Research Associate
Dept. of Chemical Engineering
University of California, Santa Barbara

Brigid Ehrlich
Adjunct Research Associate
Department of Chemical Engineering
University of California, Santa Barbara

Chandra Krintz, Ph.D.
Adjunct Senior Investigator
UCSB RACELab Director
Department of Computer Science
University of California, Santa Barbara

Rich Wolski, Ph.D.
Adjunct Senior Investigator
Department of Computer Science
University of California, Santa Barbara



Sandra Tillisch Svoboda,
Nurse Clinician (ret.)

Alexander DePaoli, MD, Vice President
Endocrinologist CMO, NGM Biopharmaceuticals
Therapeutics, Inc.

George W. Emerson, Treasurer
Principal, First Pacific Financial

Gerald S. Svedlow, MD, FACP, Secretary
Internist, Private Practice

Robert M. Nagy, MD, Immediate Past President
Psychiatrist, Private Practice

Bruce Anticouni
Attorney, Anticouni & Associates

Anita Balboa
Second Vice President / Wealth Management Advisory,
The Northern Trust Company

Robert Benham
Judge, Division One
Shelby County Probate Court (ret)

Anthony Castillo
Vice President of Finance
Alliance Wealth Strategies

Curt Cruthirds
Vice President/Retail Market
Manager, South Coast Division,

Ronald J. Fox
Investment Broker (ret.)

Yvette Giller
Vice President, Samuel B. and
Margaret Mosher Foundation

Wayne Hewitt
Financial Advisor

Anne M. Patterson, RD, MPH.
Director of Nutritional Programs,
SB County Public Health Department

Thomas W. Rook, DC
Chiropractor, Private Practice

Pierre Wiltzius, PhD
Dean, Div of Math and Sciences
College of Letters and Science,



Database Analyst

William Sansum Diabetes Center is seeking a temporary, part-time Database Analyst.

We are looking for a creative and organized candidate to join our team on a part-time temporary basis to review, evaluate, design, implement and maintain our company database(s).  The Database Analyst will identify data sources, construct data diagrams, provide data reports and document processes.  Our ideal candidate has knowledge of commonly used concepts, practices and procedures.  Familiarity with Kareo is a plus.

We are seeking someone who is a self-starter and who is confident in their ability to gather data from various sources and compile them into meaningful numbers.  In addition to reviewing data gathered in our clinical practice database (Kareo), our database analyst will gather data from our education and research programs.  Our ideal candidate will have a few years’ experience working with data entry and analysis, and can make recommendations on best practices, new software, and data gathering tools.  We are looking for someone who is not afraid to jump right in.  The hours for this position are flexible between 8a-5p on weekdays in our downtown Santa Barbara office, and would be around 15 hours a week to start.  This position will be temporary to start, but could turn into a permanent position.

The William Sansum Diabetes Center was founded in 1944 by Dr. William Sansum, the first physician in the United States to manufacture insulin and administer it to a patient.  Today the Institute is a leading artificial pancreas research site in partnership with the University of California, Santa Barbara Department of Chemical Engineering and Harvard University, and conducts research and clinical studies for industry supporting the development of new diabetes drugs and devices. WSDC is located in Santa Barbara, California.

To apply, please send your resume to!



Summer Internship Program in the Biologic/Medical Sciences

The William Sansum Diabetes Center’s Summer Internship Program, funded by the Coeta and Donald Barker Foundation, has a primary focus on diabetes mellitus, but interns learn about and are involved in a wide variety of clinical research and medically oriented activities. Providing insight into both clinical and academic medicine as well as medical research, this internship program offers a comprehensive learning experience for upper-class undergraduate students or recent college graduates interested in a biomedical or medical career.

Interns spend six to eight weeks (the dates of the program vary from year to year) at The Center. Interns (1) shadow The Center and community physicians practicing in various fields of medicine, (2) work on an assigned project contributing to the research or community outreach goals of The Center, (3) attend research program presentations by staff and visiting scientists, and (4) learn to critically review pertinent literature. There are weekly education sessions on diabetes mellitus and its treatment and complications. Interns receive instruction in many aspects of clinical research including writing, analyzing and presenting research results. Students with an interest or goal of a medical research or clinical career are encouraged to apply.

The successful applicant will have completed at least two years of college, preferably in a biomedical or pre-medical major. The ability to speak Spanish is helpful, but not required. Interns are responsible for housing and travel expenses. The post-mark or electronic-receipt deadline for submission of an application, including letters of recommendation, is April 1st, 2017.

The 2016 internship application is now closed. Please return in December 2016 to apply to the 2017 summer internship.

UC Davis graduate – “My experience as a summer intern was invaluable. My knowledge in diabetes research, care and treatment expanded in leaps and bounds.”

Stanford sophomore – “My internship allowed me to learn from some of the top scientists in the field of diabetes research.”



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Posted February 11, 2013