Dr. Jessica Kandel is a brilliant virologist working with the Joint Task Force. She is in charge of the Medical Wing in the Base of Operations to develop a vaccine for the Green Poison strain of the smallpox virus.
Before joining the research effort, she graduated top of her class from both MIT and Johns Hopkins: spent five years in an exclusive Disease Control Division (DCD) fellowship; and worked several years as lead researchist at a gen-tech start-up in New York.
Although Dr. Kandel has a high-level appreciation of a wide variety of pursuits ranging from art to classical music to New York Chariots basketball, her greatest passion is microbiological puzzle-solving. Widely known in her profession as a gifted and obsessive geneticist, she has an uncanny ability to decode viral genome sequence data.
Jessica Kandel is rescued by the agent from Rioters holding her and her staff hostage at the Madison Field Hospital. Arriving at the Base of Operations, she is quick to point out the mess of the Medical Wing (such as under staff, and outdated equipment).
Throughout her time working with the agent and Faye Lau, she stresses the vital need for samples, notes from Amherst, and data to cure the virus. By the end of the game, she states that she was able to come up with a cure, and that it was "sent to people to create who are more able than her". Before leaving to return to work, she warns that agent that if this happens again they probably won't be able to stop it.
Kandel’s intellectual curiosity is prodigious. After graduating at the top of her class at both MIT and Hopkins, Kandel spent five years in a CDC fellowship before acceding to the recruitment efforts of a gen-tech start-up in New York.
From classical music to art and basketball, Kandel loves many things, but loves the thrill of solving a puzzle the most. Widely known by her peers as a puzzle-solver, she’s never backed down from a new challenge thrown her way.
Her drive, confidence, and intellect, though excellent, can be intimidating to others; and although she remains humble about her abilities, she doesn’t have time for your pride—she has breakthroughs to discover.
After her mother died of pancreatic cancer when she was nine, her father raised her on the Upper West Side. She, in turn, helped care for her younger twin brothers, although this often proved a struggle, given Kandel’s predilection for her studies and solving the next puzzle, the next challenge.
Her pursuit of conquests outside her personal life isolated Kandel from those closest to her and, later in life, led to the dissolution of her marriage. It is with a twinge of irony, then, that she finally began to come to terms with her divorce only when the Green Poison struck New York.
Jessica and her wife, Alexis Kwan got divorced a few months before the Green Poison virus.