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Vol. LXV, No. 14
July 5, 2013
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Milestones

New Members Named to ‘Council of Councils’

The Division of Program Coordination, Planning and Strategic Initiatives recently welcomed 10 new advisory council members (the Council of Councils) who will advise on DPCPSI policy and programs.

DPCPSI director Dr. James Anderson (standing, 2nd from l) welcomes new advisory council members (standing, from l) Drs. Susan Wooley, Gilbert White, James Schwob and Nancy Haigwood. Seated are (from l) Drs. Carlos Bustamante, Janice Clements and Craig McClain. Not shown are Drs. Emery Brown, Barbara Guthrie and Steven DeKosky.
DPCPSI director Dr. James Anderson (standing, 2nd from l) welcomes new advisory council members (standing, from l) Drs. Susan Wooley, Gilbert White, James Schwob and Nancy Haigwood. Seated are (from l) Drs. Carlos Bustamante, Janice Clements and Craig McClain. Not shown are Drs. Emery Brown, Barbara Guthrie and Steven DeKosky.

Dr. Emery N. Brown is a professor of health sciences and technology and of computational neuroscience at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Warren M. Zapol professor of anaesthesia at Harvard Medical School. He is an anesthesiologist-statistician whose research focus is the development of signal processing algorithms to characterize how the patterns of electrical discharges from neurons in the brain represent information from the outside world.

Dr. Carlos Bustamante is a professor of genetics at Stanford University. As a population biologist, his research has provided insights into the dynamics and migration of populations and the mechanisms of evolution and natural selection.

Dr. Janice E. Clements is vice dean for faculty and professor of molecular and comparative pathobiology and neurology at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. Her research focuses on the molecular virology and pathogenesis of SIV/HIV in non-human primates and studies of innate immune control of lentiviruses in the CNS/regulation of miRNA-biomarkers in plasma.

Dr. Steven DeKosky serves as vice president of the University of Virginia and dean of the University of Virginia School of Medicine. His clinical research focuses on differential diagnosis, neuroimaging and genetic risks for Alzheimer’s disease and trials of new medications and his basic research centers on structural and neurochemical changes in human brains in normal aging and dementia.

Dr. Barbara J. Guthrie is associate dean for academic affairs at Yale University School of Nursing and is a nationally recognized expert in culturally responsive health-related policies and programs. Her research has examined how race, gender, class, relations and environmental contexts influence adolescent females’ parallel or co-initiation of substance use and sexually related behaviors.

Dr. Nancy L. Haigwood is director and senior scientist at the Oregon National Primate Research Center and an adjunct professor in molecular microbiology and immunology at the Oregon Health Sciences University. Her research focuses on developing vaccines and therapies to combat HIV/AIDS transmission from mother to child.

Dr. Craig J. McClain is a professor of medicine, pharmacology and toxicology at the University of Louisville School of Medicine. He is an internationally distinguished clinician-scientist in the fields of gastroenterology, alcoholic liver disease, nutrition and infectious diseases including HIV/AIDS.

Dr. James Schwob is professor of anatomy & cellular biology in the Sackler School of Graduate Biomedical Sciences at Tufts University. His research focuses on the pathophysiology of human olfactory disorders and the development of experimental animal models for disease processes including regeneration after peripheral injury.

Dr. Gilbert White is executive vice president for research and director, Blood Research Institute at BloodCenter of Wisconsin. His research centers on understanding the pathways that mediate the hemostatic responses of blood platelets and using that knowledge to develop methods to manipulate those pathways, thereby controlling vascular diseases such as heart attacks and strokes.

Dr. Susan Wooley is executive director of the American School Health Association, a multidisciplinary organization working to optimize health and academic performance through effective school health strategies. An expert on health education, she has published several books, curricula and journal articles on school health and health education issues.

Snyder To Retire From NIA’s Division of Neuroscience

Dr. D. Stephen “Steve” Snyder

Dr. D. Stephen “Steve” Snyder, deputy director of NIA’s Division of Neuroscience, is retiring after 23 years at NIH. He played an instrumental role in building NIA’s extramural research program with a focus on fundamental neuroscience related to Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias.

His research interests were wide-ranging, from the cell biological aspects of Alzheimer’s disease, to neuronal and vascular stress, to aspects of prion biology that could have implications for the development of Alzheimer’s disease.

“A member of the Division of Neuroscience for more than 20 years, Steve has played a critical role in the development and growth of the Alzheimer’s program,” said Dr. Neil Buckholtz, division director. “His insights into the basic science of Alzheimer’s and other neurological diseases have made a tremendous contribution to our efforts to understand and treat this devastating disease.”

A native of Baltimore, Snyder credits the people he met during his early research and work experiences with motivating him to pursue a career in neuroscience.

“I discovered that the people I admired were the neuroscientists, that they simply had the most interesting research questions,” he said. “Neuroscience is a demanding field and can be a struggle for those just starting out, but it seemed to offer a fine area in which to invest a career. I haven’t changed my opinion on that.”

Snyder received his B.S. in biology from Loyola College, his M.S. in cell biology from Adelphi University and his Ph.D. in pathology from Albert Einstein College of Medicine, followed by a postdoctoral fellowship in the department of neurology at the University of Tennessee Medical School. He held concurrent positions at the University of Tennessee Medical School and the VA Medical Center in Memphis from 1984 until his move to NIA in 1990.

“Neuroscience was a field just getting on its feet at that time,” Snyder said. “I was elated to come to work at the headquarters of NIA. During those years we were in the very happy position of growing the program and my particular focus was on the etiology of Alzheimer’s disease.”

While budget constraints are now making for a more demanding research environment, Snyder said he continues to be optimistic about the future of Alzheimer’s research.

“While dollars are in short supply, there is no lack of inventiveness,” he said. “Somewhere out there is a 25-year-old working on the next big thing, and in a few years, it will start a wave of experimentation and advances in our search for therapies to treat dementia.”

Snyder is also optimistic about his upcoming move to Baton Rouge, La., with his wife Elaine. While the primary draw is proximity to his young grandchildren, art classes and opportunities for mentoring and advising young scientists are also in his future.—Peggy Vaughn

Morris Named 2012 NIH Engineer of the Year

John Morris (r), 2012 NIH Engineer of the Year, with Daryl Paunil, director of NCI’s Office of Space and Facilities Management; below, NCI Shady Grove in Rockville, Md.
John Morris (r), 2012 NIH Engineer of the Year, with Daryl Paunil, director of NCI’s Office of Space and Facilities Management; below, NCI Shady Grove in Rockville, Md.
NCI Shady Grove in Rockville, Md

John Morris, lead project manager for the new National Cancer Institute Shady Grove facility, has been awarded NIH’s Federal Engineer of the Year Award for 2012. Sponsored by the National Society of Professional Engineers, the award recognizes his leadership in planning and building the new facility that consolidates most of NCI’s office space.

The 574,000-square-foot facility is built to accommodate approximately 2,450 staff members and provides expanded data and computing capabilities, with two 4,000-square-foot data centers. Other features include a cafeteria, fitness center, conference center, meeting rooms, high-density file storage space, a convenience store, credit union and federally mandated security features.

Morris’s contributions began in 2008, when plans for a new location were forming. Among the goals were to provide greater access to natural light throughout the building and encourage opportunities for walking and physical activity, including a fitness center and space for showers and lockers.

Another priority was to construct a “green” building to reduce energy consumption, use resources more efficiently and provide a healthier work environment. NCI Shady Grove includes a “daylight harvesting system” that ties the lighting level inside the building to the amount of natural light. This reduces need for overhead lighting while lowering the building’s energy load. Automated shades also adjust, based on time of day and the sun’s position. Other features include a roof with plants and outdoor green space.

“Bringing nearly 30 years of experience to the NCI Shady Grove project, John guided the process from plans on paper all the way through to completion of the building,” said Daryl Paunil, director of NCI’s Office of Space and Facilities Management. “His thoughtful approach and personality were the right fit from the beginning.”

Morris said one of the most satisfying outcomes was that the construction schedule was on time from groundbreaking to completion. “I have a lot of pride about NCI Shady Grove,” he said. “It’s a beautiful building with a very impressive entrance for NCI offices. It hits me every day—wow, this is a beautiful building.”— Rhonda DeJoice

Rodgers Recognizes ‘Weight of Nation’ Staff

NIDDK director Dr. Griffin Rodgers (standing, fourth from l) congratulates NIH recipients of the HHSinnovates award from The Weight of the Nation Campaign. Shown are (seated, from l) Dr. Layla Esposito, NICHD; Dr. Catherine Loria, NHLBI; Dr. Susan Yanovski, NIDDK. Standing are (from l) Susan Dambrauskas, NIDCD; Joanne Karimbakas, NIDDK; Kathy Kranzfelder, NIDDK; Dr. Lisa Gansheroff, NIDDK; and Dr. Philip Smith, NIDDK. Not shown is Dr. Rachel Ballard-Barbash, NCI.
NIDDK director Dr. Griffin Rodgers (standing, fourth from l) congratulates NIH recipients of the HHSinnovates award from The Weight of the Nation Campaign. Shown are (seated, from l) Dr. Layla Esposito, NICHD; Dr. Catherine Loria, NHLBI; Dr. Susan Yanovski, NIDDK. Standing are (from l) Susan Dambrauskas, NIDCD; Joanne Karimbakas, NIDDK; Kathy Kranzfelder, NIDDK; Dr. Lisa Gansheroff, NIDDK; and Dr. Philip Smith, NIDDK. Not shown is Dr. Rachel Ballard-Barbash, NCI.

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