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Rodgers Named NIDDK Deputy Director

Dr. Griffin Rodgers has been named deputy director of the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases effective Jan. 1, 2001. He replaces L. Earl Laurence, who is retiring as NIDDK's deputy after working at NIH since 1961.

In making the announcement at a recent meeting of the NIDDK advisory council, institute director Dr. Allen Spiegel called Rodgers "an outstanding clinical scientist and molecular hematologist. He has made singular contributions to the study of globin disorders." Internationally recognized, Rodgers has advanced development of treatments for sickle cell anemia and other genetic diseases that affect hemoglobin, the main component of red blood cells.

Dr. Griffin Rodgers

As deputy director, he will work with Spiegel to provide scientific leadership and to manage a staff of 900 employees and a $1 billion budget. They plan to expand public outreach and education efforts, particularly in disease prevention and management, improve clinical trial oversight, and provide more training opportunities for basic researchers and physician scientists.

"Rarely is a physician-scientist given the opportunity to ascend from the narrow confines of an individual research focus to the broader concerns affecting a larger segment of society," said Rodgers. "I am deeply honored to be entrusted with this position and look forward to its challenges and opportunities."

In addition to his new duties, Rodgers will continue as chief of NIDDK's Clinical and Molecular Hematology Branch, which he has headed since 1998, and will further his research on sickle cell anemia, thalassemias and other disorders of blood cells.

Rodgers, who is from New Orleans, received his undergraduate, graduate and medical degrees from Brown University. He was an intern, resident and chief resident in internal medicine at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis. In 1982, he joined NIDDK as a research fellow, and has been a member of the Commissioned Corps since 1989.

Leveck Named NINR Deputy Director, Director Of Extramural Activities

Dr. Mary Leveck has been named deputy director and director of extramural activities of the National Institute of Nursing Research. She will work with director Dr. Patricia A. Grady, who said, "Dr. Leveck's knowledge of NINR's scientific programs, her broad administrative experience and her network with researchers in nursing and related disciplines will be invaluable to the institute as we build upon our body of research to meet the mission of the institute."

Leveck was formerly associate director for scientific programs and director, Division of Extramural Activities at NINR. From 1990 until 1999, she was an extramural program director at the institute and managed a portfolio in the area of neurofunction and related conditions. Her major program initiatives at NIH have been in the area of symptom management of acute pain and the management of the behavioral symptoms of Alzheimer's disease patients.

She received her undergraduate degree in nursing from the University of Evansville in Indiana, her master's in nursing from the University of Colorado, and her Ph.D. from the University of Texas. Prior to coming to NINR, she held faculty and administrative positions at the College of Nursing, University of South Carolina. She has received research funding from NIH as well as from national foundations and other sources.

Hamernik Joins CSR

The Center for Scientific Review welcomes Dr. Debora Hamernik as the new scientific review administrator of the biochemical endocrinology study section in the endocrinology and reproductive sciences integrated review group. She joins CSR from the U.S. Department of Agriculture, where she was a program director with the National Research Initiative Competitive Grants program for the past 3 years. Previously, she was an assistant professor in the physiology department of the University of Arizona at Tucson; assistant professor at the University of Nebraska; and a postdoctoral fellow in the department of pharmacology at Case Western Reserve University. Her major research interests include regulation of gene expression in the reproductive system and improvement of reproductive efficiency in domestic animals.

Laredo To Direct NIAAA Office

Geoffrey Laredo has been named director of the Office of Policy, Legislation, and Public Liaison, NIAAA. He will be responsible for developing and recommending program policies for potential application at the national, state and local levels; monitoring and analyzing alcohol-related policies; conducting legislative analysis and providing legislative services; and overseeing the institute's public liaison activities. He joined NIAAA in 1996 as a senior analyst and public liaison officer. Prior to joining NIAAA, Laredo served as a senior analyst in the Office of the Administrator at the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. He began his federal career as a program specialist with the Department of Justice's National Institute of Justice, where he worked in a number of areas including drugs and crime issues.

Tran Is New CSR Science Writer

Dr. Dat Tran, a scientific writer/editor, has recently joined the Center for Scientific Review to assist the scientific review administrators in the Division of Molecular and Cellular Mechanisms. He will help prepare summary statements, edit scientific articles and provide other writing and editing services. He joins two other recently hired science writers, Kelley Kim in the Division of Clinical and Population-Based Studies and Dr. Karen Bowers in the Division of Physiological Systems. Tran did graduate research projects in the photochemistry and photophysics of transition metal complexes, kinetic studies of reactions between nitric oxide and copper complexes, and the synthesis of metal complexes as nitric oxide sensors. Prior to joining CSR, he was an NIH postdoctoral fellow in the chemistry department at Princeton.

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