Technology enables me to be accessible: An interview with Trula Stanley

by Megan Frame, membership coordinator

This month, in honor of Member Appreciation Month, we will introduce you to a new member of the PRIM&R community each week. We’ll learn about their professional experiences, personal interests, and, of course, what keeps them committed to advancing ethical research. I hope you’ll join me as I learn more about the people who comprise PRIM&R’s vibrant membership community. 

Today, it is my pleasure to introduce you to Trula Stanley, IRB coordinator at Marshall University in Huntington, WV. 

Megan Frame (MF): When and why did you join the field? 
Trula Stanley (TS): I joined the field in 1982 when I took a job as an IRB secretary. At the time, everything was still on paper.

MF: What is your proudest achievement? 
TS: I am proud to be easily accessible to the investigators at my institution—on a 24-hour basis, if necessary, now that I have electronic access to the IRB database. This technology enables me to be available even when I am not in the office. I am able to assist investigators and IRB members with questions about new submissions, continuing review, protocol deviations, or an amendment. I have been in this field for 32 years, and I am proud that I can assist new and experienced researchers along the way in their research efforts.

MF: Is there anyone, living or dead, who has inspired you in your career and/or in life?
TS: My mother inspired the best in me. She encouraged me to seek out new adventures both in my personal and professional life. With my mother’s encouragement, I landed a job in research 32 years ago, which jump started my career with the IRB. I have hopes of possibly retiring from this wonderful and rewarding career very soon, and I will live out the rest of my life knowing that the knowledge I have gained will forever change the way I look at the world.

MF: How has membership in PRIM&R’s community of research ethics professionals helped you to advance in your career?
TS: It has helped me become a valued member of the research community at Marshall University. The first conference hosted by PRIM&R that I attended was in 2001, and the knowledge that I have gained throughout the years at PRIM&R events has been valuable in my IRB work. PRIM&R has kept me up to date on research, IRB guidelines, and other developments related to clinical trials.

MF: What is one thing you wish “the person on the street” knew about your work?
TS: I wish people knew that the work I do helps ensure the safety of new drugs, techniques, and devices that are introduced to the world and that will improve the lives of the people living now as well as in the future.

Thank you for being part of the membership community and sharing your story, Trula. We are glad to hear PRIM&R has helped you stay up to date with the changes in the field. 

If you’d like to learn more about becoming a member, please visit our website today.