Today, during a speech on the Cancer Moonshot marking the 60th anniversary of President John F. Kennedy’s Moonshot speech, President Joe Biden formally announced the appointment of Dr. Renee Wegrzyn as the director of the Advanced Research Projects Agency for Health (ARPA-H). Following the announcement, Dr. Alondra Nelson, Deputy Assistant to the President and head of the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy, provided the following statement in support of the appointment.
“Congratulations to Dr. Renee Wegrzyn for her appointment as the inaugural director of ARPA-H), a new agency established to research and develop new solutions for public health challenges. The success of ARPA-H will require bold independent leadership, and Dr. Wegrzyn has the vision necessary for it to reach its full potential.
Dr. Wegrzyn is a leader in biotechnology research and innovation. Her extensive experience includes leadership positions at the United States government innovation hubs that inspired ARPA-H – the Defense Advanced Research Project Agency (DARPA) and Intelligence Advanced Research Projects Activity (IARPA). With ARPA-H, President Biden envisions a nation in which discovery of preventive, affordable medical treatments is accelerated and new healthcare solutions foster wide, equitable access.
Dr. Wegrzyn takes the helm at ARPA-H at a time of extraordinary opportunity for our Nation to advance equity and shrink or eliminate disparities in research, treatment, and access to care and prevention. This includes tackling some of our greatest health and medical challenges, from COVID-19 and cancer, to Alzheimer’s disease and maternal morbidity and mortality.
The legacy of President John F. Kennedy’s original Moonshot carries on, now outfitted with 21st Century science and technology capabilities that communities of the mid-20th Century could have only imagined. We are inspired by President Kennedy’s bold vision to take us beyond our world, in the interests of scientific discovery and public knowledge. ARPA-H is an exciting opportunity to develop leading-edge capabilities that drive healthier, prosperous, and equitable outcomes for future generations.”