Roderic I. Pettigrew, Ph.D., M.D., is the first Director of the National Institute of Biomedical Imaging and Bioengineering (NIBIB) at the NIH. From 2013-2014, the NIH Director appointed Dr. Pettigrew as the Acting Chief Officer for Scientific Workforce Diversity to establish program oversight of all NIH activities that address the unique diversity and inclusion challenges, to strengthen the national biomedical research workforce.
Prior to his appointment at the NIH, Dr. Pettigrew was Professor of Radiology, Medicine (Cardiology) at Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia, Professor of Bioengineering at the Georgia Institute of Technology, and Director of the Emory Center for MR Research at the Emory University School of Medicine. He is known internationally for his pioneering work at Emory University involving four-dimensional imaging of the cardiovascular system using magnetic resonance (MRI). His current research focuses on integrated imaging and predictive biomechanical modeling of coronary atherosclerotic disease.
Early on at the NIBIB he jointly led a national effort with Howard Hughes Medical Institute to create new interdisciplinary graduate training programs, and established the Quantum Projects program to achieve “medical moon shots” by pursuing high-risk, high-impact projects designed to solve major healthcare problems. Under Dr. Pettigrew’s leadership, national collaborative and international initiatives have been issued to develop low cost and point-of-care medical technologies and at present, he leads an effort to reduce CT radiation dose to background levels. He also leads a recent US-India collaboration to develop unobtrusive technologies for frequent recording of blood pressure to address the world wide problem of hypertension.
Dr. Pettigrew has been elected to membership in two components of the US National Academies: the Institute of Medicine, and the National Academy of Engineering. His awards include Phi Beta Kappa, the Bennie Award for Achievement, Morehouse College, the Most Distinguished Alumnus of the University of Miami (1990), the Hall of Fame of the Miller School of Medicine at the Universityof Miami, the Herbert Nickens Award of the ABC, the Pritzker Distinguished Achievement Award of the Biomedical Engineering Society, the Distinguished Service Award of the National Medical Association, the Pierre Galletti Award of the American Institute of Medical and Biological Engineering, and the Inaugural Gold Medal Award of the Academy of Radiology Research. He has also been awarded Honorary Professor of the South China University of Technology in Guangzhou on the occasion of commencing their first medical school class.