HHS Names ORI Deputy Director; Three Top Posts Still Vacant
Wanda Jones, interim director of the Office of Research Integrity since Kathryn Partin was removed in late 2016 amid turmoil, has been named the permanent deputy director of ORI, which makes findings of fabrication, falsification and plagiarism in research supported by the Public Health Service. Jones replaces Scott Moore, who recently became the director of the Office of Grants Management in the Office of the HHS Assistant Secretary for Health (“Four New Hires Will Be Needed to Lead Misconduct Oversight Agency,” RRC 16, no. 3). Jones will continue leading ORI until a replacement for Partin has been selected; Jones’ title has been changed to acting ORI director. As such, HHS still must hire a permanent director. In addition, the positions of director of the Division of Investigative Oversight (DIO) and of the Division of Education and Integrity (DEI) at ORI remain unfilled.
An HHS spokeswoman told RRC that a new DIO director “has been selected [and is] waiting for the security and background processing required for all management/supervisory positions.” She added that a posting for the DEI opening recently closed and that “no further information is available at this time.” This appears to be the third time HHS has posted this position. Partin was accused of pushing out both former DIO Director Susan Garfinkel and DEI Director Zoë Hammatt (“Pivotal ORI Misconduct Investigative Chief Resigns; Both Divisions Now Lack Leaders,” RRC 14, no. 11). After more than a year at a temporary post outside HHS, Partin became NIH’s integrity officer in December of last year (“Top Three ORI Positions Vacant After Embattled Director Moves to NIH,” RRC E-Alert, Oct. 4, 2018).