Barbara Donnell, MA

Barbara Donnell is a San Diego-based philanthropist and type one diabetes (T1D) patient parent advocate. Her work includes coordination of JDRF/LJI “Meet the Scientists Day” for T1D patients and their families.

In addition to her work with the JDRF, Ms. Donnell has coached early career researchers through the highly competitive application process for the Tullie and Rickey Families SPARK Awards for Innovations in Immunology. She is also a member of the Salk Institute Council, and is involved in the San Diego arts community.

Ms. Donnell received both her bachelor’s and master’s degrees in German from Middlebury College in Vermont. Previously, she worked in international biotech and biomedical marketing research for Robert S. First, Inc., and was also an educator in Southern California and in Europe in the 1980s and 1990s. Her daughter’s diagnosis of type 1 diabetes in childhood led to her passion for pursuing new research and support for scientists studying the autoimmune disease.