Governance/Organizational Structure

R-Center Steering Committee | R-Center Goals | R-Center Aims

The MSM RCENTER is purposefully designed to engage a diverse cross-section of the institution's research community. This inclusive approach transcends traditional department structures and research disciplines.

The Principal Investigator/Executive Program Director (Sandra Harris-Hooker), Deputy Director (James Lillard) and Program Directors (Elizabeth Ofili) have formed an Executive Team that has oversight responsibility for key functional areas. The scientific leaders for the key functional units have been selected and are as follows:

The RCENTER Steering Committee, comprised of all RCMI-funded Program Directors and other research unit leaders at the institution, has also been established. The Committee provides oversight of appropriate use of shared resources and also serves as a 'sounding board' for the P1 in establishing strategic direction for the R-CENTER.


Sandra Harris Hooker James Lillard 0 Elizabeth Ofili
Lead: Sandra Harris-Hooker, Ph.D.
Principal Investigator/Executive
James Lillard, Jr. Ph.D.
Deputy Program Director
Elizabeth Ofili, MD, MPH, FACC

R-CENTER Steering Committee:

  • Executive Program Director - Sandra Harris-Hooker
  • Deputy Program Director - James Lillard
  • Clinical Program Director - Elizabeth Ofili
  • Translational Program Director -
  • Biomedical Informatics Unit Leader - Alexander Quarshie
  • RCMI G12 Program Director - Vincent Bond
  • RCMI CRECD Program Director - Alexander Quarshie
  • Senior Basic Scientist - James Lillard
  • Senior Clinical Scientist - Roland Matthews
  • Senior Community-Based Scientist - Daniel Blumenthal
  • Senior Multidisciplinary Team Mentor - George Rust

The Research Advisory Council, a cross-section of senior investigators and stakeholders from various departments and research centers/institutes at Morehouse School of Medicine serves as the Internal Advisory Committee for the R-CENTER.

R-Center Goal

The long-term goal of the R-CENTER is to train the next generation of minority clinical and translational scientists to pursue multidisciplinary approaches to discovery science that translate into the amelioration of health disparities.

MSM has experienced tremendous growth and success of its research enterprise over the past decade based on a strategic plan that focuses our talent and resources in discrete areas that will serve the needs of minority communities.

This R-CENTER builds upon the foundational infrastructure developed with the careful stewardship and investments of RCMI resources over the past decade. Our approach is to further enhance our research capacity in clinical and translational science by building effective partnerships and seeking synergies that leverage the collective strengths of our talented faculty, trainees, students and collaborators

R-Center Aims

Aim 1: Transform Our Institution - Establish an organizational framework for conducting clinical and translational research.
Aim 2: Transform Our Research Environment - Establish a robust research and vibrant training environment that fosters innovative, multi-disciplinary clinical/translational research.
Aim 3: Transform the Community of Biomedical Scientists-Training the Next Generation. Establish an institution-wide mechanism for recruiting, training and mentoring a critical mass of talented faculty engaged in multi-disciplinary clinical/translational research.