May 27, 2022

Dr. Yvonne Maddox, our speaker at the Gala

 Dr. Yvonne T. Maddox, Ph.D. is President and Chief Executive Officer of the TA Thornton  Foundation, a family foundation dedicated to promoting the health and wellness of  underserved communities. Dr. Maddox previously served as Vice President for Research and  Professor of Allied Health Sciences at the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences  (USUHS), a part of the Department of Defense, where she oversaw a robust clinical and basic  science research portfolio, including infectious diseases, trauma and critical care medicine, health maintenance, post-traumatic stress, and traumatic brain injury. Prior to joining USUHS,  Dr. Maddox held many leadership positions at the National Institutes of Health (NIH), including  Acting Director of the National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities, Deputy  Director of the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human  Development, and Acting Deputy Director of the entire NIH.  

Throughout her academic and government career, Dr. Maddox has been a champion of issues  related to women, children, and underserved populations. Among her many accomplishments  include leading teams of international scientists in the field of reproductive health as part of bi lateral agreements between the U.S., India, and Africa; directing the highly recognized NIH  program (the Back to Sleep Campaign) to reduce sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS); creating  the NIH Down Syndrome (DS) Consortium, a federal/private partnership to advance research in  DS; and initiating the NIH-funded Well Prepared and Fit for Life childhood obesity reduction  programs. Dr. Maddox has numerous research and public policy publications and is a  recognized speaker in the area of public trust and community engagement in medical research.  Her memberships on critically important committees and working groups, several as  chairperson, demonstrate her commitment to improving the health and wellness of minority  populations and to increasing their opportunities in science and biomedical research. Recently,  she was appointed as the Senior Strategic Advisor for the NIH Path to Excellence and Innovation  Initiative to advance funding opportunities for Historical Black Colleges and Universities. 

Among her current memberships on advisory boards and committees include: the National  Institute for Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS)/NIH Council Working Group on Equity,  Diversity, and Inclusion; the Federal Nutrition Research Advisory Group; the American Society  for Nutrition Foundation Board of Trustees Executive Committee; the Black AIDS Institute  Scientific Advisory Committee, and the Miraki Innovation Board of Directors.  

Dr. Maddox has received many honors and awards, including the United States Presidential  Distinguished Executive Rank Award (the highest honor for a career civil servant), United States  Presidential Meritorious Rank Award, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) Career Achievement Award, Public Health Service Special Recognition Award, DHHS Secretary’s  Award, NIH Director’s Award (including one that bears her name), National Down Syndrome  Society Champion of Change Award, Research Down Syndrome Foundation Light the Way  Award, Delta Sigma Theta Award for Public Service, the National Council of Negro Women  Partnership Award, the Hela Leadership Award for Excellence in Reproductive Medicine,  Induction into the Historical Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) Hall of Fame, and selection  as one of the top 30 Women in Higher Education by the Journal, Diverse: Issues in Higher  Education. She is the recipient of several honorary degrees.  

Dr. Maddox received her B.S. in biology from Virginia Union University, Richmond, and her  Ph.D. in physiology from Georgetown University. She studied as a Visiting Scientist at the  French Atomic Energy Commission, Saclay, France and graduated from the Senior Managers in  Government Program of the Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University.