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Vol. LXIII, No. 7
April 1, 2011

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Former NIH Deputy Director Malone Dies

Dr. Thomas E. Malone
Dr. Thomas Malone in 2002 at a memorial service for former NIH director Dr. Donald Fredrickson
Dr. Thomas E. Malone, who served as the sixth NIH deputy director for 9 years before retiring from NIH in 1986, died Mar. 7 after a long illness. He was 84. Malone was the first African American to serve at such a senior level at NIH and was briefly the acting NIH director.

Born in Henderson, N.C., in 1926, he had been a resident of Potomac for the last 42 years. He earned his B.S. and M.S. degrees from North Carolina Central University in 1948 and 1949 respectively, and his Ph.D. from Harvard University in 1952.

Malone was professor of zoology at N.C. Central University in Durham from 1952 to 1958. He left to accept a postdoctoral fellowship of the NAS National Research Council, serving as a resident research associate at Argonne National Laboratory from 1958 to 1959. He subsequently served on the faculty at Loyola University in Chicago until joining the NIH staff in 1962.

He came to NIH as a member of the Grants Associates Program. After completing a year’s training, he joined the National Institute of Dental Research in 1963, serving in several capacities.

In 1967, Malone accepted a position as professor and chairman of the department of biology at the American University of Beirut, Lebanon. He returned to NIDR in 1969, where he was associate director for extramural programs until 1972, when he was appointed NIH associate director for extramural research and training, a position he held until his appointment as deputy director of NIH.

Dr. Thomas E. Malone
Malone, in full martial arts mode on the lawn of Bldg. 1, prepares to give a judo demonstration during Employee Fitness Day in 2001.

“When I am asked to describe what Tom Malone meant to NIH, I say that he was both a pioneer and a pillar,” said NICHD deputy director Dr. Yvonne Maddox. “He was the first African- American deputy director of NIH and his commitment to bringing others into executive positions and mentoring them was always obvious. His dedication and leadership was of central importance to the agency during those early years of his tenure.”

Upon his retirement from NIH at age 60, Malone said, “NIH is, in my judgment, one of the great institutions of our time and perhaps of all time…The benefits to mankind have already been phenomenal, but I believe what’s to come is undreamed of today.”

Observed then-NIH director Dr. James Wyngaarden, “I have rarely seen such equanimity and good cheer in anyone handling such an endless array of pressure-packed and burdensome issues. And he did all this with the warmth and friendly manner that have earned him universal admiration. I will miss him greatly.”

After leaving NIH, Malone worked at the Association of American Medical Colleges until he retired for good in 1996.

“Tom was a special hero for many years as my career evolved from a research sociologist to a health science administrator to that of a senior executive,” said Dr. Lois K. Cohen, who retired from NIH in 2006 as director of NIDCR’s Office of International Health. “I always appreciated his sage guidance along this pathway as he served as a mentor, even after he retired from the NIH and moved on to new challenges. While he is deeply missed, his legacy as a role model for many others like me lives on.”

Among his many honors, Malone was a member of the Institute of Medicine and had received a Presidential Merit Award in 1980 and a Presidential Distinguished Executive Rank Award in 1983.

“T,” as he was known, had several passions in life. He was a black belt judo instructor for over half his life, establishing a martial arts center, which bears his name, on the B4 level of Bldg. 31. He held a pilot’s license and loved to fly, and enjoyed classical music and opera. He also had special regard for the Recreation and Welfare Association at NIH. “R&W has given NIH a heart and soul that have touched the larger community in which we live,” he said.

Malone is survived by his wife of over 57 years, Dolores, and two children, Shana D. Anderson (a grants management specialist at NICHD) and Thomas, Jr., and by a sister.

CSR Honors Outstanding Staffers

Dr. Eileen Bradley Syed Quadri Dr. Joy Gibson Dr. George Chacko
Awardees are (from l) Dr. Eileen Bradley, Dr. Syed Quadri, Dr. Joy Gibson and Dr. George Chacko.

The Center for Scientific Review gave its most prestigious awards to four innovative and pioneering staff members at its recent award ceremony.

A three-member team earned CSR’s Explorer Award for developing the concept for a single cross-cutting review panel to assess interdisciplinary grant applications with the promise of translating advances in basic research into advances in clinical research: Dr. Eileen Bradley, chief of the surgical sciences, biomedical imaging and bioengineering review group; Dr. Syed Quadri, chief of the oncological sciences review group; and Dr. Joy Gibson, director of the Division of Translational and Clinical Sciences.

Dr. George Chacko, CSR’s new director of planning, analysis and evaluation, was recognized with a CSR Architect Award for assisting the IRS in implementing its Qualifying Therapeutic Discovery Project program, which issued $1 billion in tax credits or grants to small businesses. CSR engaged about 120 of its scientific review officers to help IRS determine which of the 5,600 projects submitted met qualifications, were designed to meet the goals of the program and had a reasonable chance of success.

NIEHS Scientist Mason Wins Medal

Photo of Members of the NIGMS Council

Dr. Ron Mason

Photo: Steve McCaw

NIEHS principal investigator Dr. Ron Mason was recently selected as the 2011 Gold Medal Winner by the International EPR (ESR) Society, which recognized his contributions to the field of electron paramagnetic resonance (EPR), also known as electron spin resonance (ESR).

Society president Dr. Jack Freed noted Mason’s “long career with interests spanning physical chemistry through to medicine” and singled out his “pioneering work in the use of spin traps in vivo and methods for ascertaining true radical formation.” The Gold Medal is the society’s highest award.

EPR/ESR is a spectroscopic technique that detects free radicals in chemical and biological systems. Mason is a physical chemist who heads the free radical metabolism group in NIEHS’s Laboratory of Toxicology and Pharmacology.

Mason’s group uses EPR/ESR and the immuno-spin trapping technique developed by his group in 2006 to detect and identify free radical metabolism of toxic chemicals, drugs and biochemicals to unravel the molecular mechanisms that lead to oxidative stress and development of disease. The group has also become interested in determining biomarkers for oxidative damage in rodents and humans.

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