UNITE

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About

The UNITE initiative was established to identify and address structural racism within the NIH-supported and the greater scientific community. With representation from across the NIH Institutes and Centers, UNITE aims to establish an equitable and civil culture within the biomedical research enterprise and reduce barriers to racial equity in the biomedical research workforce. To reach this goal, UNITE is facilitating research to identify opportunities, make recommendations, and develop and implement strategies to increase inclusivity and diversity in science. These efforts will bolster the NIH’s effort to continue to strive for diversity within the scientific workforce and racial equity on the NIH campus and within the extramural community.

Structure and Charge

UNITE is comprised of five committees with separate but coordinated objectives on tackling the problem of racism and discrimination in science, while developing methods to promote diversity and inclusion across the biomedical enterprise.

Four professionally dressed individuals wearing medical face masks talking and referencing tablets they are holding.

Committee U

Understanding stakeholder experiences through listening and learning

  • To perform a broad, systematic self-evaluation to delineate elements that perpetuate structural racism and lead to a lack of diversity, equity, and inclusion within the NIH and the external scientific community.
Smiling healthcare worker taking the temperature of a young boy.

Committee N

New research on health disparities, minority health, and health equity

  • To address long-standing health disparities and issues related to minority health inequities in the United States by ensuring NIH-wide transparency, accountability, and sustainability in marshaling resources for health disparity, minority health, and health equity research.
Security guard stands behind security desk with a walkie talkie in his hand.

Committee I

Improving the NIH culture and structure for equity, inclusion and excellence

  • To change the NIH organizational culture and structure to promote diversity, equity, and inclusion throughout the NIH workforce.
Four smiling individuals at an outdoor event.

Committee T

Transparency, communication, and accountability with our internal and external stakeholders

  • To ensure transparency, accountability, and sustainability of all UNITE efforts amongst internal and external stakeholders.
  • Coordinate NIH-wide efforts and communicate findings from other UNITE committees to internal and external stakeholders, and the public.
Scientists in lab coats sitting in a lab referencing a computer and test tube sample.

Committee E

Extramural research ecosystem: changing policy, culture and structure to promote workforce diversity

  • To perform a broad systematic evaluation of NIH extramural policies and processes to identify and change practices and structures that perpetuate a lack of inclusivity and diversity within the extramural research ecosystem.

Roster

UNITE Co-Chairs

Marie A. Bernard, M.D.
National Institute on Aging/NIH Office of the Director

Alfred Johnson, Ph.D.
NIH Office of the Director/Office of Management

Lawrence Tabak, D.D.S, Ph.D.
NIH Office of the Director

UNITE Program Manager

Victoria Rucker, M.P.A
Center for Information Technology/NIH Office of the Director

UNITE Program Support

Brittany Chao, Ph.D.
NIH Office of the Director

Marzjah Esther, M.P.H.
NIH Office of the Director

U Committee

Courtney Aklin, Ph.D. — Co-Chair
NIH Office of the Director

Monica Webb Hooper, Ph.D. — Co-Chair
National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities

Mia Rochelle Lowden, Ph.D. — Co-Chair
NIH Office of Research Infrastructure Programs

Shelli Avenevoli, Ph.D.
National Institute of Mental Health

Dexter Collins, M.P.A.
Fogarty International Center

Laura Cooper
National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases

Kevin Davis, M.Ed.
Center for Information Technology

Cara Finley, M.P.H.
NIH Office of the Director

Melissa Laitner, Ph.D.
NIH Office of the Director

Charlene Le Fauve, Ph.D.
NIH Office of the Director

Leslie Littlejohn
National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases

Vanessa Marshall, Ph.D.
National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities

Troy Muhammad, Ed.D., M.S.
National Cancer Institute

Ian Myles, M.D., M.P.H.
National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases

Roland Owens, Ph.D.
NIH Office of Intramural Research

Kamilah Rashid, Pharm.D.
NIH Office of the Director

Kelly Ten Hagen, Ph.D.
National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research

Brian Trent, M.P.A.
National Eye Institute

Della White, Ph.D.
National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health

N Committee

Michele Evans, M.D. — Co-Chair
National Institute on Aging

Anna María Nápoles, Ph.D. — Co-Chair
National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities

Robert Rivers, Ph.D. — Co-Chair
National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases

Gwen Bishop
National Institute of Deafness and Other Communication Disorders

Vence Bonham, J.D.
National Human Genome Research Institute

Juanita Chinn, Ph.D.
Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development

Janine Clayton, M.D.
NIH Office of Research on Women’s Health

Kathy Etz
National Institute on Drug Abuse

Justin Hentges
NIH All of Us Research Program

Daryl Holder, M.S.
NIH Clinical Center

Samantha Jonson, M.P.S.
National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences

Joan Romaine, M.P.H., M.S.
National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism

Asha Storm
National Institute of Biomedical Imaging and Bioengineering

Shannon Zenk, Ph.D., M.P.H, R.N.
National Institute of Nursing Research

I Committee

Trevor Archer, Ph.D. — Co-Chair
National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences

Marie A. Bernard, M.D. — Co-Chair
National Institute on Aging/NIH Office of the Director

Treava Hopkins-Laboy — Co-Chair
NIH Office of the Director

Alfred Johnson, Ph.D. — Co-Chair
NIH Office of the Director/Office of Management

Talin Barnes
National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences

Gwyn Collins, M.S.
National Cancer Institute

Charles Egwuagu, M.P.H., Ph.D.
National Eye Institute

Melissa Espinoza, M.P.H.
National Institute on Aging

Courtney Fitzhugh, M.D.
National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute

Kenneth Gibbs, M.P.H., Ph.D.
National Institute of General Medical Sciences

Bernard Harper, M.A.
NIH Clinical Center

Kendall Hill
Center for Scientific Review

Camille Hoover, M.S.W.
National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases

Charlene Le Fauve, Ph.D.
NIH Office of the Director (Ex Officio)

Shawn Lewis
National Institute of Nursing Research

Joe Martin
NIH Office of the Director

Marguerite Matthews, Ph.D.
National Institute of Neurological Disorder and Stroke

Darryl Murray, Ph.D.
NIH Office of the Director

Shaun Sims
National Institute of Biomedical Imaging and Bioengineering

Stephon Scott, M.P.A.
NIH Office of the Director

T Committee

Amy Bany Adams, Ph.D. — Co-Chair
National Institute of Neurological Disorder and Stroke

John Burklow — Co-Chair
NIH Office of the Director

Sadhana Jackson, M.D. — Co-Chair
National Cancer Institute/National Institute of Neurological Disorder and Stroke

Mohammed Aiyegbo, Ph.D.
National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases

Albert Avila, Ph.D.
National Institute on Drug Abuse

Samantha Calabrese, M.P.H.
Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development

Nelvis Castro
National Cancer Institute

Angie Cruz-Albertorio, M.B.A.
National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences

Carla Garnett, M.A.
NIH Office of Communication and Public Liaison

Lakshmi Grama
National Cancer Institute

Carl Hashimoto, Ph.D.
NIH Office of Intramural Research

Jesse Isaacman-Beck, Ph.D.
NIH Office of the Director/Office of Science Policy

Nakia Makonnen
National Institute of Deafness and Other Communication Disorders

Eric Refsland, Ph.D.
National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases

Eric Sid, M.D.
National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences

Wayne Wang, Ph.D.
National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute

Cassie Williams
National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism

E Committee

Ericka Boone, Ph.D. — Co-Chair
NIH Office of Extramural Research

Jon Lorsch, Ph.D. — Co-Chair
National Institute of General Medical Sciences

Anna E. Ordóñez, M.D. — Co-Chair
National Institute of Mental Health

Eddie Billingslea, Ph.D.
NIH Office of Research on Women’s Health

Tiffany Calvert, M.Ed.
National Institute of Biomedical Imaging and Bioengineering

Rena D’Souza, M.S., D.D.S., Ph.D.
National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research

Zeynep Erim, Ph.D.
National Institute of Biomedical Imaging and Bioengineering

Leonardo Garzon-Velez
Fogarty International Center

Bettie Graham, Ph.D.
National Human Genome Research Institute

Leah Hubbard, Ph.D.
National Cancer Institute

Patricia Jones, M.S., M.P.H., Dr.PH.
National Institute on Aging

Vonda Smith, Ph.D.
Center for Scientific Review

Mark Stevens, D.P.A.
NIH Office of the Director/Office of Management

James Washington, M.S., Ph.D.
National Institute of Neurological Disorder and Stroke

Maryam Zaringhalam, Ph.D.
National Library of Medicine

This page last reviewed on July 9, 2021