10th Annual Commissioned Corps
Promotion Program Held
The 10th annual NIH Public Health Service Commissioned Corps promotion ceremony was held recently in Masur Auditorium. Family members, coworkers and fellow PHS officers celebrated the promotion of 34 officers.
After the singing of the National Anthem and the PHS March, Chaplain John Pollack of the Clinical Center provided an invocation. RADM Helena Mishoe, director of NHLBI’s Office of Research Training and Minority Health and NIH representative on the Surgeon General’s Policy Advisory Council, presided over the ceremony.
NIH principal deputy director Dr. Lawrence Tabak commended and thanked officers at NIH, especially those being promoted, for their contributions to the agency and its mission. He also pledged NIH support for those assigned here in their Commissioned Corps careers.
Deputy Surgeon General RADM Boris Lushniak addressed the promoted officers and congratulated them for their contributions to PHS as well as the scientific community. Family members and coworkers joined the newly promoted officers on stage for the changing of their shoulder boards to denote their new positions.
Officers promoted are listed below by PHS category:
Medical—promoted to captain: Gregory Deye, NIAID; Paul Jung, NIEHS; Melissa Merideth, NHGRI; Daniel Singer, NICHD; promoted to commander: Daniel Chertow, CC; promoted to lieutenant commander: Ian Myles, NIAID
Nurse—promoted to captain: Irene Dustin, NINDS; Dianne Hilligoss, NIAID; Akua Kwatemaa, NIAID; Susannah Wargo, NIDCD; promoted to commander: Allison Adams-McLean, CC; Karen Axelrod, CC; Megan Mackey, NCI; Megan Mattingly, NIDDK; Nicole Plass, NIAMS; Laura Wall, NIDDK; promoted to lieutenant commander: Nikkia Powell, CC; Linhua Tzeng, CC; promoted to lieutenant: Anne Fejka, CC; Brittany Johnson, CC; Kelly Kerr, CC; Natasha Kormanik, NCI; Diamond Zuchlinski, NCI
Scientist—promoted to captain: Christine Hunter, NIDDK; promoted to commander: Adrienne Goodrich-Doctor, NIAID
Environmental Health—promoted to commander: Derek Newcomer, OD
Veterinarian—promoted to commander: Lauren Davidson, NIDCR
Pharmacist—promoted to commander: Fortin Georges, CC
Dietitian—promoted to commander: Merel Kozlosky, CC
Health Services—promoted to captain: Jeasmine Aizvera, CC; promoted to commander: Idongesit Essiet-Gibson, NIAID; Janet Valdez, NHLBI; promoted to lieutenant commander: Rafael Torres-Cruz, OD; Rebekah Van Raaphorst, NIDDK
Mishoe closed the ceremony after recognizing recently retired officers, new officers called to active duty during the past year and Commissioned Officer Student Training and Extern Program participants.
Garofalo Named Chief of CSR Review Group
The Center for Scientific
Review has selected
Dr. Robert Garofalo as
chief of its endocrinology,
sciences (EMNR) integrated
review group. He
has been a scientific review officer at CSR, where
he has coordinated the molecular and cellular
endocrinology study section and the cellular
aspects of diabetes and obesity study section.
“Bob brings impressive supervisory and leadership
skills to this position,” said Dr. Richard
Nakamura, acting CSR director. “These skills
were developed leading research teams in the
pharmaceutical industry and academia…and at
CSR; he has excelled in leading SRO teams and
mentoring new SROs.”
The EMNR group includes 11 study sections
that review NIH grant applications for both
basic and clinical research in molecular, cellular
and higher order hormone-regulated processes
in physiology and pathophysiology. The
group includes research related to disorders of
the endocrine system, diabetes, obesity, nutrition
and metabolic disorders, as well as research
related to the biology of reproduction and disorders
of fetal and neonatal life.
Garofalo came to CSR from Pfizer Global
Research and Development in Groton, Conn.,
where he directed a laboratory focused on diabetes
drug discovery. He also worked to establish
and lead a $14 million insulin resistance
pathways collaboration that involved multiple
Pfizer labs, four universities and a modeling
company to identify new targets.
Garofalo began research on insulin receptor
structure and function during his postdoctoral
training at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer
Center. While assistant professor at the State
University of New York Downstate Medical
Center in Brooklyn, his laboratory determined
the molecular structure of the insulin receptor
homolog from the fruit fly; he was among the
first to use this model to demonstrate a conserved
role for insulin in the coordination of
growth, metabolism, reproduction and lifespan.
Garofalo received his Ph.D. in anatomy and
cell biology from Albert Einstein College of
Medicine and also did postdoctoral work in
the department of anatomy and cell biology at
Class of 2012 Project SEARCH Interns Graduate
|The graduating SEARCH interns include (from l) Lawrence Anderson, Alexander
Brouwers, Sasha Butler, Philippe Fontenot, Christopher Herron, Cierra Gantt, Diandra
Garnett, Spencer Jacobs, Carly Wasserman and Carlos Pena.
The NIH community recently honored the accomplishments of the 2012 graduating
class of NIH-Project SEARCH interns. Ten youngsters completed a 30-week
unpaid internship in more than 15 training worksites across NIH. Designed to
provide young adults with intellectual disabilities the opportunity for an independent
future, the program offers total workplace immersion and helps build
The program is offered in collaboration with Project SEARCH, an international
organization that works with hospitals and businesses to provide employment
opportunities and experience for young adults with disabilities; the Ivymount
School’s Post High School Program, a life skills program that prepares students
ages 18-21 for a successful transition from school to employment and adult life;
and SEEC, a local nonprofit that provides employment support to transitioning
youth and adults.
Colleen Barros, NIH deputy director for management, congratulated the graduates:
“Project SEARCH is a win-win for all of us. The interns get a 30-week training
course that helps them with their skill sets. For the NIH, it enhances our
culture, gives us an untapped pool to draw on and enhances the diversity of our
workforce. It’s not just the right thing to do, it’s the best thing to do for our organization.”
To learn more about NIH-Project SEARCH, visit www.cc.nih.gov/projectsearch/
NIDA Recognizes Addiction Science Award Winners
|First place winner John Edward Solder (r) with Dr. Bill Dewey of Friends of NIDA and Dr. Nora Volkow, NIDA director
The 2012 winners of NIDA’s Addiction Science Awards, part of the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair (ISEF), presented their projects to NIDA scientists recently. The Addiction Science Awards are coordinated by NIDA as well as Friends of NIDA, a private group dedicated to furthering NIDA’s mission. ISEF is the world’s largest science competition for high school students. The 2012 awardees are as follows:
First place: John Edward Solder (project: Optogenetic interrogation of prefrontal cortex dopamine D1 receptor-containing neurons as a technique to restore timing: A novel approach to treat prefrontal disorders)
Second place: Benjamin Jake Kornick (project: OMG: Look who joined Facebook! The relationship between parenting and adolescent risk behaviors)
Third place: L. Elisabeth Burton (project: A big fat deal, phase III: Attributions of body talk, risk assessments of steroid/dietary supplement use, perceptions of media images and self-esteem)
Following the awards presentation, the honorees enjoyed a guided tour of the Clinical Center and NIDA intramural laboratories.
Grady Honored by UCLA School of Nursing
|NINR director Dr. Patricia Grady receives Sterling Award from the UCLA School of Nursing.
Dr. Patricia Grady, director of the National Institute of Nursing Research, was recently honored by the UCLA School of Nursing with the Sterling Award at the school’s 2012 commencement ceremony, where she served as the keynote speaker. This was the inaugural year for the Sterling Award, which acknowledges “superior achievement in science and health.” UCLA noted that the award recognizes those who have taken great strides in promoting and improving health across the nation through scientific research and leadership in health communities.
In her keynote address, Grady discussed the health care challenges of the 21st century and the capacity of the nursing community to lead change and advance health. Her remarks included examples of how nursing research has been translated into practice. One example, the “SmartSponge System,” is an FDA-approved medical device developed collaboratively by an operating room nurse. After citing several notable contributions nurses and nurse scientists have made, Grady spoke directly to the soon-to-be-graduates: “You have the ability to fundamentally change our health care into more equitable, effective, person-centered, accessible and affordable systems. And you have the remarkable opportunity to bring about sustainable, far-reaching improvements into the lives of people you touch every day and also into the lives of people the world over.”
Wani Named CSR Review Group Chief
The Center for Scientific Review has named Dr. Maqsood Wani new chief of its cell biology integrated review group (IRG). He has been a scientific review officer, coordinating NIH grant application reviews for the cardiovascular differentiation and development study section in CSR’s cardiovascular and respiratory sciences IRG.
“Maqsood brings to this key position exceptional breadth and depth in understanding of molecular, cellular and developmental biology,” said CSR acting director Dr. Richard Nakamura. “He also brings a deep appreciation and understanding of peer review.” Nakamura noted that Wani has served as a CSR referral officer, assigning applications to various IRGs.
“His new IRG also will benefit from the valuable skills he developed mentoring and leading scientific review officers at CSR,” Nakamura added.
The cell biology IRG includes nine study sections, which review applications related to the study of fundamental cell and developmental biology, as well as basic mechanisms in aging and ocular systems.
Wani earned his Ph.D. at Ohio State University, where he studied the role of oncogenes and tumor suppressors in the acquisition and loss of amplified genes. He did postdoctoral work at the University of Cincinnati, studying the role of transcription factors in the development of heart, lung and blood using embryonic stem cells and gene knockout technology.
Before joining CSR, Wani was assistant professor in the departments of pediatrics and molecular genetics at the University of Cincinnati Medical Center, where he was engaged in stem cell research in cardiac regeneration as well as in medical and graduate teaching.
The results of his research were published in Nature, Development, Journal of Biological Chemistry, Molecular and Cellular Biology, Transgenic Research, Blood, Cancer Research and Circulation.