Farheen joined the Office of Behavioral and Social Sciences Research (OBSSR) in December 2016. She leads the Policy and Evaluation team at OBSSR, providing guidance on planning, policy development, and analysis necessary for key policy and program decisions by the NIH leadership. Farheen serves as the point person on collaborations with NIH Office of Portfolio Analysis, creating and improving tools that will better evaluate the behavioral and social sciences funded by the NIH. Full Bio
Dr. Dara Blachman-Demner joined OBSSR in January, 2017. She is focused on efforts to facilitate the adoption of behavioral and social science findings into health research and practice. She has expertise in developmental psychopathology; prevention and intervention research at multiple levels of the social ecology; community based participatory research; and dissemination and implementation science. Full Bio
Katherine Blizinsky, Ph.D.
Health Science Policy Analyst
Katherine Blizinsky, Ph.D., is a Health Science Policy Analyst in the Office of Behavioral and Social Sciences Research. Her OBSSR responsibilities include conducting portfolio analyses to facilitate OBSSR’s coordination and development of existing and new research and training opportunities. Prior to her position with OBSSR, Kate held policy fellowships with the US Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions, and the National Human Genome Research Institute (NIH/NHGRI).
Dr. Bill Elwood specializes in OBSSR efforts to improve the synergy among basic through applied researchers and research findings. He manages OBSSR’s efforts in NIH’s Basic Behavioral and Social Science Opportunity Network (OppNet). Bill facilitates the monthly OBSSR Director’s Seminar series and the annual Matilda White Riley Early Stage Investigator Honors competition. Full Bio
Dr. Elizabeth Ginexi joined OBSSR in November 2016. She is focused on the application of innovative research methodologies, measurement, and analytic approaches to advance behavioral and social sciences research. She has expertise in family- and community-based etiology, prevention, and treatment research; policy interventions to target population-level health behavior; and quantitative analysis, statistical and computational modeling. Full Bio
Dr. Dana Greene joined OBSSR as a Health Scientist Administrator in late 2016. Her area of expertise is Behavioral Neuroscience, with a focus on behavioral methods in animal models and humans. She is currently involved in the BRAIN Initiative, BluePrint for Neuroscience Research, the Sleep Research Coordinating Committee, the Myalgic Encephalomyelitis / Chronic Fatigue Syndrome Working Group, and the Adolescent Brain Cognitive Development Study. Full Bio
Sara Hargrave, Ph.D.
AAAS Science and Technology Policy Fellow
NIH Liaison: NIDCD, NINDS
Sara Hargrave joined the Office of Behavioral and Social Science Research in August, 2016 as a AAAS Science and Technology Policy Fellow. Dr. Hargrave received her Ph.D. in psychology, with concentrations in Behavioral Neuroscience and Ingestive Behavior from Purdue University, after which she received postdoctoral training at the Center for Behavioral Neuroscience at American University. Full Bio
Kate McNeill, MA, is a Public Health Advisor in the Office of Behavioral and Social Sciences Research. She joined OBSSR in October, 2016 and primarily focuses on budget, contracts, and planning for the office. Kate comes to OBSSR after working in several different Programs and Offices at the National Cancer Institute. Full Bio
Erica Moore is the Communications Director in the Office of Behavior and Social Sciences Research (OBSSR). Erica’s responsibilities within OBSSR include managing all communications, outreach, and engagement activities.
Kathryn Morris, MPH
Health Science Policy Analyst
NIH Liaison: FIC, ORWH
Kathryn is a Health Science Policy Analyst in OBSSR, serving as executive secretary of the NIH Behavioral and Social Sciences Research Coordinating Committee, facilitating co-funding opportunities for the office, and providing research and analyses for the office. Kathryn is also the OBSSR liaison to the Office of Research on Women’s Health and Fogarty International Center. Full Bio
Dr. Riley is the NIH Associate Director for Behavioral and Social Sciences Research, and Director, Office of Behavioral and Social Sciences Research. He has served at the NIH since 2005 at NIMH, NHLBI, and NCI before his current appointment in 2015. He is responsible for advising NIH leadership on issues pertaining to behavioral and social sciences research and for coordinating the behavioral and social sciences research supported by NIH. Full Bio
Wendy Smith, MA, Ph.D., BCB
Acting Deputy Director
NIH Liaison: NIDA, NCCIH
Dr. Smith is the Associate Director in the Office of Behavioral and Social Sciences Research. In this position, she advises the NIH Associate Director for Behavioral and Social Science Research on programmatic and scientific issues particularly related to behavioral and social sciences and interdisciplinary research, public private partnerships, and leads the development of new trans-NIH research initiatives from emerging research opportunities. Full Bio
Dr. Michael Spittel joined OBSSR in 2011 to co-lead new science initiatives to improve research addressing Population Health in the Behavioral and Social Sciences (BSSR). He is focused on innovations in statistics, data, and science training. He has expertise in demography, methods, and the social determinants of health. He is the program coordinator for the following funding opportunity announcements: Population Health Interventions: Integrating Individual and Group Level Evidence (R01, R21) and Education and Health: New Frontiers (R01, R21, R03). Full Bio
Erica L. Spotts, Ph.D., is a health scientist administrator. She was previously a program officer in the Division of Behavioral and Social Research (BSR) at the National Institute on Aging (NIA), where she was hired to lead the Behavior Genetics portfolio. In that capacity she was integral to the efforts to conduct genome-wide scans on 20,000 subjects of the Health and Retirement Study, as well as more fully develop the genetics portfolio for BSR. Full Bio
Dana Wolff-Hughes, Ph.D.
Health Scientist Administrator
NIH Liaison: NIAMS, NIBIB, NHLBI
Dana Wolff-Hughes joined the Office of Behavioral and Social Sciences Research in June 2016 as a Health Scientist Administrator. Her primary responsibility is to provide technical guidance and direction to research efforts related to the development and evaluation of behavioral and social outcomes using mobile and wireless health technology. Full Bio
Deborah Young-Hyman joined the Office of Behavioral and Social Science Research (OBSSR), Office of the Director, NIH as a Health Sciences Administrator in January 2014. She is a behavioral health psychologist with post-doctoral training in psychoendocrinology, with a focus on psychosocial aspects of diabetes self-management and adjustment to illness. Full Bio