R-Ladies Philly

R-Ladies Philly

About Us

We are the Philadelphia chapter of R-Ladies Global, a world-wide organization that promotes gender diversity in the R community and in data science more broadly. While our group name does have ‘R’ and ‘Ladies’ in the title, we welcome all individuals who share our values and follow our code of conduct and who have an interest in data science, regardless of proficiency with R.

Since our first meetup in January 2018, R-Ladies Philly has grown to a highly active, diverse and community-driven group, with:

  • Over 2,000 members
  • Informal monthly meetups that are skills-focused, free, and focused on interdisciplinary statistical and coding methods
  • A quarterly networking happy hour series
  • Real-world data analytic projects that promote group work and help local nonprofits
  • Collaborative engagements with other local data science groups
  • A mentor/speaker directory

We are always looking for more ways to grow and for new data approaches to try! Connect with us via the R-Ladies Philly Slack, Email philly@rladies.org or better yet, come to one of our events!


Meet our board members

Darina Chudnovskaya, MSc (she/her)

Darina photo
Darina is a data analyst at a hospital in the Philadelphia area. She uses R to run statistical tests and build models for epidemiological studies with the goal of developing patient interventions for disease prevention. She grew up in Philadelphia. Darina joined R Ladies Philly to meet other R enthusiasts.

Karla Fettich, PhD (she/her)

Karla photo
Karla works as Senior Data Scientist at AmeriHealth Caritas, where she builds identification and stratification solutions for different populations in the healthcare industry, and coordinates larger data science efforts. Originally from Romania, Karla completed her B.A. in psychology in Germany, her M.A. in social sciences in Chicago, and her Ph.D. in psychology/neuroscience in Philly.

Alice Walsh, PhD (she/her)

Alice photo
Alice is a computational biologist who works in pharmaceutical drug development and has lived in the Philadelphia area for the last ten years. She uses R to transform biomarker data from patients into useful insights that can help doctors make better decisions. Alice was inspired to start an R-Ladies chapter in Philadelphia after seeing a video of another R-Ladies meetup online.

Jessie Pluto (she/her)

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As a senior manager of Strategic Analytics at Comcast, Jessie assigns value to video programming and predicts the impact of specific content loss. She leverages R in her work for data wrangling, statistical analyses, and automating everything possible, building functions, packages and R Markdown outputs. Jessie holds a BA in Psychology and a post-grad certification in Applied Statistics from Penn State.

Jesika Saucedo (she/her)

Jesika photo
Jesika is a final year graduate student in pharmacology. She is a beginner R user that uses R for data visualization and statistical analysis of her wet lab research. She is interested in learning more about how to use R in drug discovery. She joined R Ladies to improve her R skills, meet others in the Philadelphia area, help promote diversity in the programming space, and be a part of a community with others learning or using R.

Michelle Chiu (she/her)

Michelle photo
Michelle is currently a data analyst at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP). She recently obtained her PhD in Psychology and Neuroscience from Temple University. When she’s not tackling and visualizing data using R, you can find her exploring Philly’s food scene or practicing yoga.

Board Alumni

Katerina Placek, MSc (she/her) Co-Founder and Blog Chair: Jan 2018 - July 2019

Katie Cousins, PhD (she/her) Co-Founder: Jan 2018 - July 2018

Amy Goodwin Davies, PhD (she/her) Organizer: 2019 - 2022

Cass Wilkinson Saldaña (they/he) Organizer: 2021 - 2022

Chun Su, PhD (she/her) Organizer: 2019-2023


R-Ladies Philly is fortunate to receive support from several amazing organizations. Contact us to learn more about sponsorship opportunities.

R-Ladies Philly open collective

Some of our past and current sponsors include:

Independence Public Media Foundation


R consortium


Penn Dental

Temple University Center City

Drexel LeBow College of Business

Penn Institute for Urban Research