Team
 
 
 

Miranda Wang


Co-Founder and CEO

Miranda immigrated to Vancouver, Canada from China with her parents when she was 6 years-old. After spending one year in rural China in 5th Grade, she realized that her greatest passion in life is building a more sustainable future through leading teams. Miranda has been an effective environmental advocate and community organizer since 8th Grade. As a student at Magee Secondary, Miranda organized students to build an organic garden at school using money raised from bottle drives, set up a school-wide composting program, and collect 1000 signatures in a petition that successfully prevented the inner-city sister elementary school from closure due to budget cuts. In 11th Grade, she discovered her love for biology and subsequently obtained her BA in cell and molecular biology, engineering entrepreneurship, and philosophy at the University of Pennsylvania in May 2016. She had the opportunity to conduct research on a variety of plastic-related topics under the mentorship of Dr. C. Grier at the National Research Council Canada in Montreal, Dr. M. Bartolomei at the Smilow Center for Translational Research, Dr. B. Chow through joining the Penn Genetically Engineered Machines team, and Dr. M. Huff through her senior year independent research project with Penn Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering. Outside research, Miranda founded TEDxPenn and launched a 1000-attendee conference on campus in 2015. Miranda lives in San Jose and is a huge fan of Asian cuisine, Chill music, furry animals, and redwood forests.


Jeanny Yao


Co-Founder and CTO

When Jeanny was 11, she left her industrial hometown in Shenyang, China, and immigrated to Vancouver, Canada, with her parents. That was where she built a deep connection with nature, which gave her strength, companionship, and peace of mind. In Grade 8, Jeanny joined the Magee Environment Club in the hopes of contributing to community sustainability. Since then, she has led the building of the first school garden at Magee, planned field trips for students to learn about nature's wonders, and organized community-wide local food workshops outside of school. Through learning about the environment, Jeanny discovered her passion for science. She became a frequent in the dissection club and the science department's lunchroom, and also began to stay after school to engage in cool science experiments with the teachers. There was no doubt when Jeanny declared her environmental science and biochemistry double majors in her sophomore year of college. Outside of academics, she was the president of her department's student association, the chair of a tri-campus TEDx organization, and a NSERC student researcher at Dr. Roberta Fulthorpe's microbial ecology lab, studying the biodegradation of plastics and organic toxins. In 2014, Jeanny was named Canada’s Top 20 Under 20 and the University of Toronto Scarborough Campus Top Student in Physical and Environmental Sciences. At the moment, if Jeanny is neither working nor sleeping, then she is probably seeking new hiking spots and vegetarian food options or singing karaoke with her friends in San Francisco.


Dr. Afshan Kidwai


Sr Scientist, Synthetic Biology

Afshan spent her childhood in India and the United Arab Emirates. While growing up, she was attracted to the scientific field and motivated by a desire to help people. She obtained an undergraduate degree in chemical engineering from the Institute of Chemical Technology in Mumbai. Afshan is passionate about engineering biological systems for environmental remediation as well as to synthesize innovative products. So she pursued doctoral studies in Professor Jay Keasling's laboratory at the University of California, Berkeley. Then she worked as a post-doctoral researcher in the Molecular Microbiology and Immunology department at the Oregon Health and Science University. Afshan was a part of nature clubs in school and college and often participated in clean-up drives and environmental awareness campaigns. Now, she is excited to work with the BioCellection team to tackle the plastic waste problem. Afshan lives in Fremont, where you will often find her relishing Indian or Afghani food. She enjoys visiting and camping in the national parks on the West Coast. Besides reading a good book, she also loves to travel and explore different countries with her husband and two children.