Dr. Sally Vernon, chair of the department of health promotion and behavioral sciences at The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston (UTHealth) School of Public Health, has been appointed to the Board of Scientific Counselors for Clinical Sciences and Epidemiology at the National Cancer Institute (NCI).
As part of her duties, Vernon will evaluate and review research projects of cancer scientists and clinicians in the NCI’s Center for Cancer Research (CCR) and Division of Cancer Epidemiology and Genetics (DCEG). This will involve evaluation of the performance and productivity of senior scientists and senior clinicians through periodic site visits to NCI labs. The board members will provide advice to the director and deputy director of the NCI about matters concerning scientific program policy and progress and future direction of the research programs carried out by CCR and DCEG. The NCI is part of the National Institutes of Health.
“It’s an honor and an important responsibility to evaluate the research programs NCI is carrying out,” said Vernon, who holds the Blair Justice Professorship in Mind-Body Medicine and Public Health at UTHealth.
Vernon’s research has focused on the promotion of evidence-based cancer screening tests for breast, cervical and colon cancers. Her current research focuses on developing, implementing and evaluating evidence-based strategies to increase human papillomavirus vaccination rates in adolescents. She was appointed to the board in 2015 and will hold a 5-year appointment with the board, which meets several times a year.