As an established leader within UCLA Health, the David Geffen School of Medicine, and the Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, she was selected by her colleagues as UCLA Health Exceptional Physician in 2018. Dr. Ward has worked at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Department of Biological Products in Atlanta, and at Amgen in Clinical and Commercial Cell Culture Manufacturing and as a Quality Officer, bringing a wealth of experience to this role. At UCLA she is the Medical Director of the UCLA Health, Blood and Platelet Center, Associate Medical Director of the Transfusion Medicine Service, and Laboratory Director for the Center for Pathology Research Services/ Pathology Research Portal, a shared resource for the Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center.

The UCLA HGCTF supports the manufacturing of gene and cell therapy products for UCLA investigators as well as other academic and industry partners conducting clinical trials in which a cell or gene therapy product is manufactured under an FDA IND. This facility is a joint effort of the David Geffen School of Medicine, the Human Gene and Cell Therapy Program (HGCTP), the Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center, and the Eli and Edythe Broad Center for Regenerative Medicine and Stem Cell Research. Examples of clinical trials supported by HGCTF include immunotherapy of melanoma and sarcoma with TCR-modified T cells, gene therapy for ADA-deficient SCID, XSCID, XALD, and immunotherapy of glioblastoma with allogeneic cytotoxic T lymphocytes.