Tanya Shirman is a post-doctoral research associate in the group of Joanna Aizenberg. She received her Bachelor's degree in Chemistry from Hebrew University, Jerusalem, and PhD from the Weizmann Institute of Science, Rehovot, Israel in 2011. As a graduate student, working with Milko van der Boom, Tanya developed new strategies for utilizing novel supramolecular interactions to assemble hybrid metal-organic materials. For her achievements during her Ph.D. program and as a perspective scientist, in 2012 Tanya was awarded the Israel National Postdoctoral Award for Advancing Women in Science. Her current research focuses on the design and synthesis of stimuli-responsive adaptive and tunable materials. As a part of the MRSEC Active Soft Materials Group (IRG3), Tanya is developing bio-inspired materials capable of chemo-mechanical energy transduction. Specifically, these dynamic materials represent active surfaces consisting of light-responsive hydrogel-based nano-actuators capable to mechanically stimulate living cells with subcellular resolution. In addition to conducting research, Tanya takes active part in mentoring numerous undergraduate and graduate students.