NCATS Deputy Director McInnes Retires After 29 Years

Dr. Christopher Austin presents Dr. Pamela McInnes with a commemorative plaque.

NCATS director Dr. Christopher Austin presents Dr. Pamela McInnes with a commemorative plaque in recognition of her leadership on the NCATS Advisory Council and Cures Acceleration Network review board at a meeting May 10.

Photo: Lisa Helfert

Dr. Pamela McInnes, deputy director of the National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences, retired May 31 after 29 years of federal service. For the past 4 years, she helped shape and build the new center from the ground up, working with staff, key stakeholders and the broader research community to strengthen NCATS’ role as a leader in clinical and translational science.

McInnes’ expertise in clinical and translational research, extramural research management, trans-NIH collaborations and public-private partnerships served NCATS well, helping the center overcome many challenges.

“Pamela has been my partner, confidante and advisor in building NCATS for the past 4 years,” said NCATS director Dr. Christopher Austin. “It is simply impossible to quantify all the ways that she has contributed to NCATS’ development. I can’t thank her enough and I wish her all the best in her well-deserved retirement.”

Before joining NCATS in 2014, McInnes served as director of the Division of Extramural Research at the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research. There, she was responsible for the institute’s extramural research activities, which range from basic through clinical studies, including large and complex clinical and population-based trials.

Prior to her time at NIDCR, McInnes spent 16 years at the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, where she served in many capacities, including as deputy director for the Division of Microbiology and Infectious Diseases. In addition, she led the reorganization and oversight of NIAID’s Division of Clinical Research as well as the scientific design and implementation of a Challenge Grant Program promoting joint ventures among NIH and biotechnology, pharmaceutical and medical device companies.

The author of numerous peer-reviewed articles and books, McInnes first joined NIH in 1989 as a grants associate in the Office of Extramural Programs in the Office of the Director. Before coming to NIH, she served in academic roles at Louisiana State University Medical Center in New Orleans. McInnes earned her D.D.S. and M.Sc. from the University of the Witwatersrand in Johannesburg, South Africa.

NCATS is conducting a national search for a replacement. In the interim, Dr. Danilo Tagle will serve as acting deputy director.