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Vol. LVIII, No. 18
September 8, 2006

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Whitmer Appointed NEI Executive Officer

David L. Whitmer has been appointed to the position of associate director for management and executive officer of the National Eye Institute. NEI director Dr. Paul Sieving said, "We are very pleased to have an executive officer of David's expertise at the NEI. His extensive managerial experience here at NIH will serve him well in this senior leadership position."

In his new post, Whitmer serves as principal advisor to Sieving on all management issues affecting NEI. This includes managing financial, human resource, information technology and procurement activities and coordinating the institute's ethics and equal employment opportunity and diversity programs. NEI has approximately 520 scientists, clinicians, support staff, volunteers and contractors and an FY 2006 budget in excess of $670 million.

Before coming to NEI, Whitmer served as executive officer and director of the Division of Management Services, Center for Scientific Review and as chief of the Management Policy and Administrative Services Branch of the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute.

He began his NIH career as a presidential management intern in 1993, spending his first year as an administrative officer for the Division of Cancer Etiology at the National Cancer Institute. He then moved to NCI's office of the director, where he served as a management analyst.

Whitmer holds a master's degree in public administration and political science from the University of South Florida in Tampa.

NIDDK's Briggs Leaves, Star Named Acting Division Director

Dr. Josephine Briggs (l), director of NIDDK's Division of Kidney, Urologic and Hematologic Diseases, recently left NIH to become a senior scientific officer at Howard Hughes Medical Institute in Chevy Chase, where she will participate in oversight of the Howard Hughes Investigator program. In 9 years at NIH, she established the National Kidney Disease Education Program, was an effective spokesperson for KUH programs and recruited top scientists to guide education and research programs. She also participated in cross-NIH activities such as the trans-NIH zebrafish committee and the Roadmap's NIH-RAID program. Dr. Robert Star (r) has been named acting director of the division until a permanent replacement is appointed. He is a nephrologist and has been senior scientific advisor in the KUH division since 1999. In addition, he has been senior advisor for clinical research in the NIH Office of Science Policy and Planning and has been engaged in NIH Roadmap initiatives for re-engineering the clinical research enterprise.

NIH Environmental Specialist Lee Dies

John Curtis Lee, 78, who retired from NIH as an environmental specialist last January after a 56-year career here, died Mar. 7 in Frederick after an extended illness. He held a variety of positions at NIH before moving to the Division of Safety and then the Division of Environmental Protection.

"He quickly became a valued member of Environmental Protection and is sorely missed by all who knew him," said his former supervisor Jim Carscadden, chief of DEP's Environmental Compliance Branch, Office of Research Facilities.

Born in Hopehill, Md., Lee graduated from Lincoln High School in 1944 and attended Morgan State University.

He served as a logistic specialist in the U.S. Army, then joined NIH, where he served in numerous positions before finishing his career as an environmental specialist. He was also employed at Microbiologic for 20 years in a building services role.

Lee was an avid sports fan and had played baseball for the Hopehill Wildcats and Frederick Bombers. He also enjoyed bowling and cards.

He is survived by his wife, Fay Lee, and by six daughters, three sons, three sisters, 19 grandchildren and three great-grandchildren.

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