A former reporter who once covered crime, politics and HIV, Coimbra began freelancing for Burness in 1989. She joined the firm fulltime in March 2004. Before that, she had served four years as a science writer for the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), promoting new research in Science magazine and planning and implementing AAAS activities nationally and internationally. Coimbra has led on strategy and implementation of projects in Brazil, France, Italy, Norway, the Philippines, Spain, the United Kingdom and Vietnam. Coimbra speaks four languages (English, Spanish, French and Portuguese) and is conversant in Italian and Portuguese Creole. Before beginning her work as a science writer and communicator, Coimbra wrote for The San Francisco Chronicle, The Stamford Advocate and the Watsonville Register-Pajaronian.. A member of the National Association of Science Writers and the International Science Writers Association, Coimbra has volunteered as a program organizer for the annual meeting of the World Federation of Science Journalists. Coimbra was born in Portugal and raised in Brazil, Guinea Bissau, Senegal and Tunisia. She has served as a VISTA volunteer, teaching English to Vietnamese immigrants, and has a bachelor’s degree in languages and linguistics from Georgetown University.