Francis Collins became Director of the NIH in August. Eric Green has now accepted Francis’s previous position of Director of the NIH National Human Genome Research Institute (NHGRI). That means Eric’s position, Scientific Director of the intramural NHGRI research program, is now open. A search committee is forming, and I’m on it. Eric has started to canvass the community for interested candidates, and ads will soon start appearing. There is a tight timeline – Eric expects to interview for the position in March. Whom should NHGRI be considering as candidates?
The Scientific Director leads a group of about 50 intramural investigators, with a total budget of about $100M/year — perhaps comparable to a large university department, and combined with the substantial advantages of NIH intramural research, including dedicated funding and an extraordinary clinical research environment. With these investigators and programs like the NIH Chemical Genomics Center (NCGC), the NIH Intramural Sequencing Center (NISC), and the new Therapeutics for Rare and Neglected Diseases (TRND) program, NHGRI intramural research is wonderfully positioned to apply all this high-tech high-throughput genomics technology to many problems of real medical significance. It will be hard to replace Eric Green, who was a fabulous SD — like Eric, the ideal person would need to be able to be fluent not only with genetics and genomics, but also with clinical research, and such a person could really use this as an opportunity to lead genomics into new areas of great human impact.
Anyone who’s interested in the job yourself, keep an eye out for the ads. And I’d welcome any suggestions for people who should be approached.