AMWA – Carolinas Chapter
American Medical Writers Association – Carolinas

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Calendar of Events

From September to June, the AMWA-Carolinas Chapter hosts educational events and networking opportunities. For AMWA membership information, please go to Once you have joined AMWA at this website, select the Carolinas Chapter at no additional charge and begin to receive invitations to our monthly events.


Upcoming Events

March 2020 Events

Career Transition Workshop

Thursday, March 19, 2020, 6:30-8:30 PM

Join Virtually

Interested in breaking into medical writing or transitioning to a different role within the field? Join us on Thursday March 19th for a career transition workshop.
Panelists from the AMWA Carolinas Board of Directors will answer questions, view CVs/resumes, and offer feedback. This event also serves as a great networking opportunity!



May 2020 Events

AMWA Carolinas 2020 Spring Conference: Postponed


Past Events

February 2020 Event

AMWA Carolinas Book Club:

Bad Blood: Secrets & Lies in a Silicon Valley StartUp by John Carryrou

Thursday, February 20, 2020, 6:30-8:00 PM

Please join us for a discussion on John Carryrou’s Bad Blood: Secrets & Lies in a Silicon Valley StartUp.

“Theranos sold shares in a fundraising round that valued the company at $9 billion, putting Holmes’s worth at an estimated $4.7 billion. There was just one problem: The technology didn’t work. For years, Holmes had been misleading investors, FDA officials, and her own employees”. – Goodreads

Click here to purchase your copy from

January 2020 Event

Annual Business Meeting/What I learned in San Diego

Thursday, January 9, 2020

4:30 – 6:30 PM

The Frontier
800 Park Offices Drive
RTP, NC  27560

Come to Happy Hour at the Frontier in Research Triangle Park and hear from your fellow AMWA Carolinas Chapter members about the educational sessions they attended or presented at the 2019 Medical Writing & Communications Conference in San Diego! Our January event will also serve as our annual business meeting.

December 2019 Event

AMWA Carolinas Chapter Holiday Party

The annual holiday party is a great opportunity for networking and reconnecting with other medical writers in a relaxed and festive setting.

The chapter will offer appetizers and soft drinks. Alcohol and more substantial meals will be available for purchase if you wish.  Please join us!

City Kitchen

University Place

201 S. Estes Drive
Chapel Hill, NC  27514

Thursday, December 19, 2019

6:30 – 8:00 PM

Register here!

May 2019 Events

BELS Exam, May 2, 2019

9:00 am – 12:30 pm

Chapel Hill Public Library
100 Library Dr.
Chapel Hill, NC 27514

The exam will start at 9:00 am, so plan to arrive 15 minutes early. For questions, email Jill Moffett at

Note: Pre-registration is required and the deadline has passed. For details about the BELS exam, please see


AMWA Carolinas Pre-conference Dinner, May 2, 2019

6:30 – 8:30 pm at the Tobacco Road Sports Cafe, Chapel Hill. Click here for details.

AMWA Carolinas 2019 Spring Conference, May 3, 2019

Click here for details on the conference.


April 2019 Event

Panel Discussion on how to Break Into Medical Writing

If you are a graduate student, postdoc, or other professional interested in learning more about the medical writing field, please join AMWA Carolinas for a panel discussion with early career medical writers on medical writing as a career!

Chapel Hill Public Library
100 Library Dr.
Chapel Hill, NC 27514

Wednesday, April 10, 2019

6:00 – 6:30 pm – Networking
6:30 – 7:30 pm – Panel discussion

Bring your questions! Light refreshments will be provided.

February 2019 Event

AMWA Carolinas Book Club:

The Art of Scientific Storytelling by Rafael E. Luna, PhD.

Make your research stand out from other publications by telling YOUR scientific story. Please join us for a discussion on Rafael Luna’s The Art of Scientific Storytelling.

Click here to purchase your copy from

Thursday, February 21, 7:00-8:00 PM

Caribou  Coffee
1406 E. Franklin St.
Chapel Hill, NC

January 2019 Event

What I Learned In Washington

Free beer!

Come to Happy Hour at the Frontier in Research Triangle Park and hear from your fellow AMWA Carolinas Chapter members about the educational sessions they attended or presented at the 2018 Medical Writing  & Communications Conference in Washington, D.C.

Proposals for sessions in beautiful San Diego will be due before you know it. Happy Hour is a great opportunity to get ideas and tips for your pitch–or just reminisce about out of the best conferences AMWA has had in years! If you were at the Washington conference and are willing to speak for about 5 minutes about your experience, please contact us by December 15 so we’ll know to expect you.

The Frontier in RTP
800 Park Offices Drive
RTP, NC 27560

Thursday, January 3, 2019
4:30 – 6:30 pm

Look for our white and blue AMWA Carolinas banner!

December 2018 Event

AMWA Carolinas Chapter Holiday Party

City Kitchen

University Place

201 S. Estes Dr.

Chapel Hill, NC 27514

Thursday, December 6, 2018

*Note date change*

6:00 – 8:00 PM

The annual holiday party is a great opportunity for networking and reconnecting with other medical writers in a relaxed and festive setting.

The chapter will offer appetizers and soft drinks. Alcohol and more substantial meals will be available for purchase if you wish.  Please join us!

Register HERE by Monday, December 3, 2018

November 2018 Events

North Carolina Regulatory Affairs Forum (NCRAF) and LaunchBio Panel Discussion Event: 

“The Fast Track: Careers in Regulatory Science”

Join us for a panel discussion with regulatory science leaders who will share career navigation strategies, keys for success and lessons learned.

Thursday, November 15, 2018

5:30 – 6:30 Networking

6:30 – 7:30 Panel Discussion

IQVIA Atrium

4820 Emperor Blvd
Durham, NC 27703

Registration is FREE for NCRAF members, $20 for non-members, or $10 for non-members who are students, post-docs, or unemployed job-seekers.

For additional information and to register, see NCRAF event details at

The AMWA Carolinas Chapter will reimburse the $10 registration fee to AMWA members who attend!

NCRAF membership is $40/year. For individuals interested in pursuing a career in clinical research or regulatory affairs, membership is a great investment.

2018 Medical Writing & Communication Conference AMWA Carolinas Chapter Dinner in Washington, D.C.

Thursday, November 1, 7:00 PM 

Please join us for a networking dinner and meet fellow AMWA Carolinas Chapter members at the AMWA Annual Medical Writing & Communication Conference in Washington, D.C.! We will gather at 6:15 – 6:30 in the Renaissance Hotel lobby at the AMWA Carolinas banner. The restaurant is a 10-minute walk from the hotel (or one stop away on the Metro).


480 7th St. NW

Washington, DC, 20004

Register here by October 31, 2018.

September 2018 Events

Special Invitation from PRA Health Sciences:



Join us in Charlotte for an AMWA Meet-up!

Join fellow Charlotte-area AMWA members for a gathering at University City Regional Library at 2 p.m. Saturday, September 8:

Snacks and drinks will be provided by the Carolinas Chapter!

The chapter executive council values your membership in AMWA, and we know that getting to Raleigh- and Durham-based events can be difficult. Hence, we’re offering this road trip format with four of us from the Triangle. We hope to encourage an informal affinity group that the chapter will support with newsletter announcements and possibly budget. Let’s get together and talk about what that might look like–or just talk with like-minded professionals at the end of another busy week!

Please let us know whether you will be joining us. RSVP to by September 3.May 2018 Events

AMWA Carolinas Preconference Dinner

Friday, May 3rd, 6:30-8:30 PM

Tobacco Road Sports Cafe

1118 Environ Way

Chapel Hill, NC

Details on the Spring Conference page!

AMWA Carolinas Spring Conference

Friday, May 4th

Friday Center in Chapel Hill, NC

Details on the Spring Conference page!

Susan G. Komen Triangle to the Coast Race for the Cure (5K)

Saturday, May 5th – the day after the AMWA Carolinas Spring Conference

Research Triangle Park, NC

Team Name is Medical Writers and Friends

Click here for more information and to register on the Race for the Cure website to join!

April 2018 Event

AMWA Carolinas Book Club

The Big Fat Surprise by Nina Teicholz

Thursday, April 12, 7:00-8:00 PM

Caribou  Coffee

1406 E. Franklin St.

Chapel Hill, NC

Click here to purchase from

March 2018 Event

Happy Hour at the Frontier!

Thursday, March 22, 4:00-6:00 PM

The Frontier

800 Park Offices Drive

Research Triangle Park, NC


March 2017 Event

George Benedict

#Winning: Persuasive Writing

Thursday, March 23, 2017
6:30 PM

Location: Primal Food and Spirits in Durham, NC

George Benedict is a Senior Proposal Manager with RTI International who supports proposal, capture, and pre-proposal projects. He is an accredited proposal manager and technical communicator, with over 25 years of experience in proposal management and development, technical writing, project management, and technical training.

Attendees will be responsible for the purchase of their food and beverages.

February 2017 Event

Frank Church, PhD, FAHA
Professor of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine
UNC School of Medicine
Chapel Hill, NC

Presentation title: “From Proteases and Protease Inhibitors to Parkinson’s Disease and Paperback Writer”

Dr. Church will discuss navigating academic life from point A to point Z and will give his perspective on grant writing, manuscript/review article writing, and book chapter writing. He will talk about his vast experience regarding lecturing vs writing (ie, having natural born talent vs learning to become a good writer or teacher). He will also talk about the creation and writing of his blog “Journey with Parkinson’s”, a blog for Parkinson’s education, research advances, new treatment strategies, and personal reflection. Finally, Dr. Church will touch on his experience as a newspaper editor/writer and member of the Communications Committee for the National Parkinson’s Foundation World Congress.

February 7th, 2017  6:30pm

Tobacco Road Sports Cafe (Tobacco Road-Chapel Hill)
1118 Environ Way
Chapel Hill, NC 27517

January 2017 Event

Chapter members discussed the presentations they made at the AMWA National Conference in Denver this past Fall. You should have joined us for drinks at happy hour at Frontier and listened to a recap of some great presentations!

January 26th, 2017  5-6:30pm

Happy Hour at the Frontier in Durham, NC (Happy Hour at the Frontier)

AMWA Carolinas Holiday Party

Tuesday, December 13, 2016
6:30-8:30 PM

City Kitchen,
201 S Estes Drive, Chapel Hill, NC 27514

Our annual holiday party is always our most popular event! It’s a great way for our members to network or reconnect with other medical writers in a casual, fun setting. Please consider joining us!

Presentation on Editing Your Own Work

Monday, November 14, 2016
6:30-8:00 PM
Tobacco Road Sports Cafe, 118 Environ Way, Chapel Hill, NC
Hope Lafferty of Hope Lafferty Communications presented the lessons she has learned over her career as a science and medical writer and editor. By identifying simple solutions to common problems, writers at every level were given tools to improve their ability to edit, proofread, and finalize their manuscripts, grants, presentations, and technical documents with greater facility.

The talk covered the following topics

  • Common Writing Mistakes That Are Easy to Miss
  • Common Problems in How We Review Our Work
  • Best Editorial Practices

Networking Event and Happy Hour

Date: Thursday, September 15, 2016
Location: Tobacco Road Sports Cafe, 1118 Environ Way, Chapel Hill, NC

AMWA Carolinas Chapter members had the wonderful opportunity to network and share tips to prepare for the AMWA Annual Conference in Denver.


Toxicology 101 for Medical Writers

Presenter: Tom Burns

Date: Wednesday, July 27, 2016
Location: Rookie’s Sports Bar, 4911 Central Park Drive, Durham, NC

Tom gave a brief survey on the principles of toxicology and educated attendees on how to approach toxicology from a medical writing standpoint. This was a sneak peek into Tom’s presentation at the Medical Writing & Communication Conference in Denver this fall (see for details).

AMWA Carolinas 2016 Spring Conference 

Our annual Spring conference was held Friday, May 6, 2016, at The William & Ida  Friday Center for Continuing Education in Chapel Hill, NC and we had another great program this year. Thank you to our sponsors: UCB Biosciences, Synchrogenix and Impact Pharmaceutical Services!


2016 Pre-conference Dinner 

Date: Thursday, May 5, 2016
Location: Tobacco Road Sports Cafe, 1118 Environ Way, Chapel Hill, NC

AMWA Carolinas Spring Conference attendees and AMWA members had a wonderful evening filled with delicious food, networking and socializing.


Unleashing the Full Potential of Microsoft Word 

Presenter: Natalie Herr, PhD

Date: Monday, March 21, 2016
Location: Online

The webinar highlighted key settings and features in Word that are important for medical writing documents. Attendees also learned quick tips and shortcuts to increase efficiency during writing and formatting.

Natalie Herr, PhD is a Medical Writer and Consultant at Whitsell Innovations.


Happy Hour and Networking Social

Date: Thursday, February 25, 2016
Location: The Frontier, 800 Park Offices Drive, Research Triangle Park, NC

AMWA Carolinas Chapter members had the opportunity to drink Bombshell Beer Company brews while networking with other medical writers.


Nonclinical: Content, Organization, and Strategies for Survival

Presenter: September Mihaly, PhD, RAC

Date: Thursday, January 21, 2016
Location: Tobacco Road Sports Cafe, 1118 Environ Way, Chapel Hill, NC

The presentation included a discussion of the nonclinical sections of regulatory documents and strategies for their completion.


AMWA Carolinas 2015 Holiday Social

Date: Thursday, December 3, 2015
Location: 58Fifty Bistro & Martini Bar, 5850 Fayetteville Rd, Durham, NC 27713

AMWA Carolinas Chapter members had the opportunity to connect or reconnect with other medical writers in a semi-private relaxed setting.


Pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamics webinar

Date: Thursday, September 10, 2015
Location: Online

This webinar provided an overview of pharmacokinetics (PK)/ pharmacodynamics (PD) concepts including: absorption, distribution, metabolism, excretion, half-life, clearance, and volume of distribution. Thank you to Dr. Ann Winter-Vann for helping attendees become well-versed in PK and PD which will help when writing Investigator’s Brochures (IBs), Briefing Books, Clinical Study Reports (CSRs), and New Drug Applications (NDAs).

Dr. Winter-Vann is a Senior Medical Writer and Consultant and the Clinical Regulatory Writing Lead at Whitsell Innovations, Inc., where she has extensive experience in the preparation of regulatory documents for submission to the FDA, EMA, and other international health authorities.


Durham Bulls Baseball Game with the Society for Technical Communications (STC)

Date: Tuesday, September 1, 2015
Location: Durham Bulls Athletic Park, 409 Blackwell St, Durham, NC 27701

The Society for Technical Communication (STC) Carolina Chapter members and AMWA chapter members met for drinks and food at Tyler’s before the game. Members of both organizations had a lot in common and enjoyed each other’s company.


Networking Lunch

Date: Thursday, June 18, 2015
Location: Sal’s Pizza Italian Restaurant, 2103 Allendown Dr., Durham, NC 27713


Networking Lunch

June Networking Lunch

June Networking Lunch

June Networking Buffet

June Networking Buffet


AMWA Carolinas Chapter members had the opportunity to network with other medical writers in a relaxed setting.




AMWA Carolinas 2015 Spring Conference

Date: Friday, May 1, 2015
Location: The Friday Center, NC Hwy 54, Chapel Hill, NC

Thank you to all the organizers, presenters and attendees! It was a wonderful conference this year.
View the Survey Results (PDF) for the AMWA Carolinas 2015 Conference.

AMWA Carolinas Preconference Dinner with AMWA president Karen Potvin Klein

Date: Thursday, April 30, 2015
Location: Tobacco Roads Sports Café, 1118 Environ Way, Chapel Hill

Karen Klein

Karen Klein at AMWA dinner

AMWA preconference dinner

AMWA preconference dinner

AMWA attendees

@AmMedWriter Association attendees


It was a great turnout of American Medical Writers Association (AMWA) members. Attendees enjoyed delicious food, with a beautiful view, while our national AMWA president, Karen Klein, provided insights on upcoming initiatives.


About Karen Klein
Karen has been a member of the Carolinas chapter since 1989. She has taught workshops on editing grant applications and manuscripts at the AMWA annual conference since 2000, and has served on AMWA’s national Executive Committee since 2004. She was named an AMWA Fellow in 2006. One of her most gratifying experiences in AMWA was co-chairing the Certification Commission in 2012-2013. In her day job, she is the Director of Grant Development and Manuscript Editing at Wake Forest School of Medicine in Winston-Salem.


Networking Happy Hour and Book Discussion

Date: Thursday, March 26, 2015
Location: 58Fifty Bistro & Martini Bar, 5850 Fayetteville Rd, Durham, NC 27713



AMWACarolinas March Event

Attendees discussing the checklist

Attendees of March AMWA Event

Attendees of March Event

We had a large turnout and a wonderful conversation about The Checklist Manifesto, a book written by Dr. Atul Gawande. As medical writers, we shared with each other how we use checklists and project management plans in our daily work. Below are some comments of the event.

          • “I really liked the handout; I can’t wait to read this book; my appetite has been whetted”
          • “The facilitator, Ciranna Bird, offered the perfect balance of providing background information and soliciting good audience participation.”
          • “I thought it [the networking and book discussion] went great!”


Writers Beware: Are Droids Taking Our Jobs? – January 2015 Speaker Event

Presenter: Jodi Pollock, Senior Medical Writer at inVentiv Health

Presenter: Jodi Pollock

Presenter: Jodi Pollock


Chalkboard Menu

Bocci specials




Date: Thursday, January 15, 2015
Location: Bocci Trattoria and Pizzeria, Cary, NC



The restaurant provided a warm atmosphere for a lively discussion about the role technology has played in the evolution of the workplace.


December Social Networking Event

Date: Wednesday, December 10, 2014
Location: City Kitchen, Chapel Hill, NC

AMWA Carolinas Chapter members had the opportunity to connect or reconnect with other medical writers in a semi-private relaxed setting.  Visit our LinkedIn AMWA Chapter site to see comments from our members.

Practicing Your Soft Skills – November Lunch Roundtable

Presenter: Lori Rochelle, senior medical writer at i3
Date: Thursday, November 13, 2014
Location: Capital City Chop House, Morrisville, NC


Chapter Dinner at the October AMWA National Conference

Date: Thursday, October 9, 2014
Location: The Majestic Grille, Memphis, Tennessee


September Visit to the Duke University’s History of Medicine Collection

Date: Thursday, September 11, 2014
Location: Duke University Perkins Library, Durham, NC

Attendees of this lunchtime event viewed and touched artifacts that documented the history of medicine from the twelfth-century to the twentieth-century.
Research scientist and AMWA Carolinas chapter member, Dr. Tara Cartwright wrote the following description, “Collection highlights included manuscripts and personal letters of the eighteenth-century physician and American Founding Father Benjamin Rush. A rare first edition of Gray’s Anatomy, a handwritten manuscript from a Connecticut physician detailing all births attended, and case studies from the Father of Vaccination Edward Jenner were also on exhibit. Moreover, a seventeenth-century amputation saw and box of women’s pills, a rare vintage prosthetic glass eye collection and medical antique bloodletting and leeching instruments were also on display.”


AMWA September AMWA Carolinas Chapter Elections

Nominations were accepted for four open chapter positions: President-elect, Secretary, Communications Director, Web Manager.
Only one position had more than one candidate. The candidate biographies were sent out to all chapter members and the results of the votes
were announced on September 30, 2014.

          • President-elect: Jacqueline Powell
          • Secretary: Kelsey Tsipis
          • Communications Director: Kelsey Tsipis
          • Web Manager: Ciranna Bird

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Last modified: March 19, 2020