Client Success Stories

Learn About Microbiology

Antimicrobial Test Laboratories - Staff

The many people who work at Antimicrobial Test Laboratories are intelligent, professional, and helpful. Our clients can count on them to help speed their projects from start to finish.

  • Gina Tanner, M.B.A. | CEO
  • Benjamin Tanner, Ph.D. | President
  • Luisa Ikner, Ph.D. | Senior Virologist
  • Jason Williams, B.S. | Microbiology Manager
  • Benjamin Grosse-Siestrup, Ph.D. | Microbiology Manager
  • Nicholas Garcia, B.S. | Quality Assurance Specialist
  • Diego Ugarte, B.S. | Microbiologist
  • Drew Sowersby, M.S. | Microbiologist
  • Blake Rolland, B.S. | Microbiologist
  • Michelle Sawyer, B.S. | Microbiologist
  • Katelyn Hammond, B.S. | Microbiologist
  • Nicole Goulding, B.S. | Microbiologist
  • Andrew Hartman, B.S. | Business Development Manager
  • Kimberly Korn | Bookeeping Assistant
  • Eric Cuellar | Microbiology Intern

Gina Tanner holds a B.S. in Finance from the University of Arizona and an MBA. She brings years of Fortune 50 sourcing, marketing, finance and accounting experience to Antimicrobial Test Laboratories. Most importantly, Gina brings her passion for customer service and efficient business processes.

"I want innovators to feel comfortable exploring the possibilities of their technologies at Antimicrobial Test Laboratories. To that end, I spend my days streamlining lab-client interactions, maintaining our fast test-turnaround times, and making sure our customers are satisfied with their testing experience."

Benjamin Tanner holds a Ph.D. in Microbiology and Immunology from the University of Arizona, where he studied infectious disease transmission with Dr. Charles Gerba. He founded Antimicrobial Test Laboratories with his wife in 2006 after enjoying years as a microbiologist with The Clorox Company. Since then he has overseen thousands of antimicrobial efficacy studies for industry, academia, and government.

Dr. Tanner wrote the book "Legal Aspects of Infectious Diseases" and routinely serves as an expert in litigation related to microbial contamination and infection. He enjoys helping parties on both sides of litigation understand the microbiological phenomena central to their disputes.

Dr. Tanner spends most of his time working with the laboratory's clients to ensure the success of their projects and working one-on-one with Antimicrobial Test Laboratories' proficient staff.

"Being part of Antimicrobial Test Laboratories' growth has been incredible. Together with our clients, we have created great jobs for microbiologists, helped amazing products to succeed in the market, and become widely known as a responsive, competent commercial partner. Our goal for 2014 and beyond is simple: Build our position as the very best laboratory for antimicrobial testing."

Dr. Tanner takes part in the following organizations:

Dr. Tanner talks about nursery hygiene on the Today Show:


Luisa Ikner holds a Ph.D. in Soil, Water and Environmental Science (Environmental Microbiology focus) from the University of Arizona. She has worked as a microbiologist for nine years on a variety of projects under the guidance of Dr. Raina Maier and Dr. Charles Gerba.

Her projects have included the assessment of human impact on bacterial populations in pristine cave systems and method development for concentration and detection of enteric viruses in water.

Luisa brings a wealth of knowledge and technical expertise in applied virology to Antimicrobial Test Laboratories.

“Whether one considers viruses as abiotic or living, they have and will continue to shape things to come for humankind. The development of virucides has been a key factor in exercising some control over these infectious agents."

Jason Williams holds a B.S. in Microbiology from Texas Tech University. His previous work experience includes USDA, where he studied virulence and pathogenesis of hemorrhagic E. coli. Jason plays a key role in laboratory operations and project management. Prior to joining Antimicrobial Test Labs, he served in the United States Marine Corps, where he was a two-time recipient of the Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal.

“We may never win the war against pathogens, but we can pick our battles through the prudent use of effective antimicrobial products. I am excited to take part in optimizing the effectiveness of antimicrobials and disinfectants produced by today’s leading and largest consumer product manufacturers."

Benjamin Grosse-Siestrup completed his Master's studies in microbiology in 2006 at the University of Würzburg, Germany. He then moved to the US, where he earned a Ph.D. in Infectious Diseases from the University of Georgia, studying gene regulation in Mycobacterium tuberculosis, the causative agent of tuberculosis.

Dr. Grosse-Siestrup brings several years of experience working in high containment laboratories to Antimicrobial Test Laboratories. His scientific acumen fits well within the company. His natural interest in business coupled with his interest in antimicrobial technologies is a great asset to colleagues and customers alike.

"In 1969, after the discovery of penicillin, US Surgeon General William H. Stewart said 'The time has come to close the book of infectious disease.' Today we know that this time has not come and maybe never will. However, by supporting the development of new antimicrobial agents, we can try to shift the battles with the microbes in our favor."

Nicholas holds a B.S in Biomedical Science from Texas A&M University. Before joining Antimicrobial Test Laboratories, Nick worked at a cutting-edge biotechnology company on assay devlopment, then as a cGMP quality and validation specialist for a global pharmaceutical company.

He now serves as Antimicrobial Test Laboratories' Quality Assurance Specialist, where he ensures scientific quality by employing his solid understanding of GLP regulations, official ASTM and AOAC test methods, and solid benchtop microbiology background.

Diego Ugarte holds a B.S. in Microbiology from the University of Texas at Austin. Prior to joining Antimicrobial Test Laboratories, Diego worked in sample collection and testing of Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) samples at New England Baptist Hospital in Boston, Massachusetts. His MRSA experience is a great asset to the company.

Diego is also fluent in Spanish, his native tongue, and brings chemistry knowledge to the lab through experience in pharmaceutical studies.

Drew Sowersby holds a Master’s in Biochemistry from Texas State University where he explored gene over-expression as a strategy to increase alcohol resistance in yeast.

He brings over 10 years of interdisciplinary laboratory training in Molecular Biology, Microbiology, Analytical Chemistry, Organic Synthesis, and Materials Science to Antimicrobial Test Laboratories.

His work on academic and commercial projects using sensitive biological assays, cell culturing, GLP/cGMP, and ASTM test methods are a great resource to the company.

Blake Rolland holds a B.S. in Microbiology from the University of Oklahoma. Blake has a genuine interest in microbiology and pathogenesis. The benchtop laboratory experience he gained while studying under a number of prestigious professors assists him in executing a number of the test methods offered by Antimicrobial Test Laboratories.

Michelle Sawyer holds a B.S. in Microbiology and Cell Science from the University of Florida, where she developed a love of microbiology and an interest in research and cell science. While studying and taking classes she also worked in a cancer cell biology research laboratory under the UF College of Medicine. Her previous benchtop lab experience and training help her to execute a variety of test methods at Antimicrobial Test Laboratories.

Katelyn Hammond holds a B.S. in Microbiology from the University of Texas, Austin. Here coursework was heavy on laboratory-based training, including the study of cell culture and virology.

Not content to limit herself to the classroom, she took an opportunity to work at The Texas Department of State Health Services (TDSHS), where she was able to make a significantly improve infectious disease reporting with regard to salmonellosis and varicella infections.

Katelyn's education and experience to date put her in a position to succeed among the bright scientists who work alongside her at Antimicrobial Test Laboratories.

Nicole Goulding holds a B.S. of Biological Sciences from the University of California at Santa Barbara. Prior to her work at Antimicrobial Test Labs, Nicole worked for Genentech, where she assisted in the production of commercial and clinical therapeutics.

Nicole contributes her regulatory compliance background and mindset of process improvement to the lab. Nicole excelled in her microbiology lab-based courses and her educational background gives her a strong knowledge of microbiology theory and lab practices.

Andrew Hartman holds a B.S. in Business Management from West Chester University in Pennsylvania, where he studied various aspects of business operations and management. He is technically minded, friendly, and helpful.

Prior to joining Antimicrobial Test Laboratories, Andrew spent several years developing business opportunities in the medical device testing industry

He strives to give the customer the best experience, every time. His previous work experience and his passion for customer service make him a great addition to Antimicrobial Test Laboratories.

Kimberly Korn brings over a decade of bookkeeping experience from the medical manufacturing and aerospace industries to her work at Antimicrobial Test Laboratories. Her contribution to the business side of the laboratory ensures projects don't get held up in accounting.

She also supports the lab and the scientists by performing many general office functions. Her cheerful, “customer first” attitude will brighten your day.

"Success is a journey, not a destination. Let's make the most of our journey."

Eric Cuellar is a student at The University of Texas at Austin. This fall marks his final semester studying biological sciences with a concentration in microbiology. Eric plans on taking advantage of the internship and applying the knowledge obtained through his coursework, to gain experience in applied microbiology and the antimicrobial industry.