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Dr. Isabel Garcia Named NIDCR Acting Director

Isabel Garcia, D.D.S., M.P.H. Isabel Garcia, D.D.S., M.P.H., has been named Acting Director of the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research (NIDCR).   Her new position was announced by NIH Director Francis S. Collins on August 19 following his appointment of NIDCR Director Lawrence Tabak as Principal Deputy Director, NIH.   Dr. Garcia will lead the NIDCR while a search for a permanent director is under way.  A Rear Admiral in the U.S. Public Health Service, Dr. Garcia has served as NIDCR’s deputy director since 2007.

Dr. Garcia’s experience spans 30 years in public health, clinical care, research, and administration at the local, state, and national levels.  Since joining the NIDCR in 1995 as a Special Assistant for Science Transfer, she has served as the Institute’s liaison to professional organizations, government entities, and Congress on oral health research issues.  She led the development of two NIDCR Strategic Plans and the Institute’s initial plan for eliminating health disparities.  Prior to her appointment as NIDCR Deputy Director, she directed the NIDCR Office of Science Policy and Analysis.  In this role she served as principal advisor to the Director on science policy, health policy, and legislative matters and managed the Institute’s scientific planning, evaluation, coding, and reporting activities.  Before joining NIDCR, Dr. Garcia was a health scientist administrator at the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality where she managed research on health services and primary care.  Prior to her career in the USPHS, she worked in the private sector as a clinician and held local and state health management positions in Virginia and Ohio.

Dr. Garcia received her undergraduate degree in chemistry from the University of Mary Washington, a doctorate in dental surgery from the Medical College of Virginia, and a master’s degree in public health from the University of Michigan.  She also completed a residency in dental public health at the University of Michigan and a fellowship in primary care policy with the U.S. Public Health Service.  

The recipient of numerous honors and awards, Dr. Garcia received the PHS Meritorious Service Medal and Achievement Medal, as well as several PHS group awards.  She was recognized for her role in a Presidential and Secretarial health diplomacy mission to Latin America with a Special Assignment Award, Hazardous Duty Award, and Foreign Award. 

Dr. Garcia is a Diplomate of the American Board of Dental Public Health, one of the nine specialties recognized by the American Dental Association.  She has served as an officer in professional associations, including the Executive Council of the American Association of Public Health Dentistry, the Oral Health Section of the American Public Health Association, and the American Board of Dental Public Health.  In addition to her duties as NIDCR Deputy Director, Dr. Garcia directs NIDCR’s Residency Program in Dental Public Health and serves as the Institute’s coordinator for international health.  

 

 

 

 

 

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This page last updated: January 06, 2014