Marta Rodriguez, Director of Clinical Operations at Altasciences
Marta Rodriguez, Altasciences

At the heart of science are stories—stories of experiences, challenges, impacts, lessons, and more. These stories breathe life into the work we do, and drive our pursuit of knowledge. These stories breathe life into our “why?”

For Marta Rodriguez, Director of Clinical and Study Operations at Altasciences, the journey into science and healthcare was deeply influenced by her personal experiences with her parents' illnesses. Her initial fear of not comprehending her parents' medical care fueled her curiosity. Read on as she shares how her passion to support those facing health challenges inspired her career.

Q: What inspired you to choose healthcare as a career path?

I am a compassionate person by nature, and I wanted my career to involve caring for others. I decided to do schooling for healthcare because of the health issues my parents faced, and because of what I learned through taking care of them. When I was 18, my dad had a stroke, and my mother had a liver transplant after suffering failure because of autoimmune hepatitis. Within two months of each other, both of my parents were very close to dying. As I learned more about the medications they were taking and their side effects, in addition to how they improve the daily lives of patients, I was able to explain the details to my parents, who had grown up in the Hispanic culture and believed more in herbal supplements than in drugs. The happiness and fulfillment I felt in helping them motivated me to join the healthcare field. 

Q: How did you transition to working in clinical research?

During my mother’s liver transplant, we were unaware of the process medications had to go through in order to be approved, and my mother is someone who is afraid of the unknown. This led me to learn more about clinical trials, and about the safety and efficacy of drugs so I could better explain to my mother. Through that experience, I was inspired to work in the field. I initially worked with late-phase clinical trials, and then I came to Altasciences. Through my different roles here, I gained a firsthand appreciation for all that goes into conducting clinical trials, and their l impact on patients. CROs like Altasciences ensure drugs are safe for patients to use, and our jobs are the kind that can change the world.

[h3] Q: Before becoming Director of Clinical and Study Operations, what role was especially rewarding for you?

As Clinical Research Coordinator, I was in charge of running  trials with the Principal Investigator, as well as speaking to all members of our staff, training them, and ensuring that everyone understood the purpose behind what we do; it was very rewarding.

Q: What do you love the most about your current role at Altasciences?

As Director of Clinical and Study Operations, I am involved in every single aspect of trials, and a major part of my job is to explain the trial process and details to study participants and staff. And with that comes the aspect of motivating them—I love engaging with our participants and reminding them that the drugs they are giving their time for could one day help them, their grandparents, their parents, their friends, and the global community. 

Q: What’s something you are most proud of as Director of Clinical and Study Operations?

I'm very proud of the team that we have built to run our clinical trials. They take their work to heart. They build connections with participants, clients, and across Altasciences. They know that even a small task can have a positive impact on a client’s experience, an individual’s life, and the world. Seeing them use that as motivation to bring their best makes me proud. 

Q: How do your parents feel about what you do?

I’m still taking care of my parents―they’re living with me now. They see me working hard every day and they’ve watched me gain experience and knowledge working at Altasciences. They know I’m here and succeeding because of the way they inspire me, and they are immensely proud to see all of it. 

Q: Do you have a personal hero?

My mom. No matter how much she's been through in her life, she's always there to help others. No matter how many medications she is taking, and no matter how she’s feeling at any given time, she is always there for her family. 


Our mission at Altasciences is to get better drugs to the people who need them, faster. “Getting to the Heart of Science” is a series offering a deeper dive into the minds and hearts of Altascientists.

Learn more about Marta’s story from this video:

See more from this series below:

- Dr. Gaetano Morelli | Chief Medical Officer

- Natasha Savoie | Senior Director, Quality Assurance

- Amber Malloy | Analytical Associate III, CDMO

- Michelle Newby | Study Coordinator II, Preclinical