Opening Keynote Speaker

Brett Giroir
  • Admiral Brett Giroir, M.D.
  • Tuesday, May 9, 2023
  • 7:45 – 9:00 a.m.

Dr. Giroir has served as the 16th Assistant Secretary for Health in the United States Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), Acting Commissioner of the United States Food & Drug Administration (FDA), and Admiral in the United States Public Health Service Commissioned Corps. He also served as United States Representative to the Executive Board of the World Health Organization (WHO) within the Department of State. Notably, he was a member of the White House Coronavirus Task Force in 2020 and appeared almost daily on national media. He is also the author of a new book entitled Memoir of a Pandemic, Fighting COVID from the Front Lines to the White House.

A graduate of Harvard University with a degree in Biology, magna cum laude, Dr. Giroir went on to attend the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center where he earned his M.D. Next, he completed his pediatric internship, residency, and chief residency at University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center. Following residency, he was a National Institutes of Health (NIH) Pediatric Scientist Training Fellow at the Howard Hughes Medical Institute, and then completed a clinical fellowship in pediatric critical care medicine.

Dr. Giroir has held numerous leadership roles in government and academia, beginning with the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, where he worked his way up from assistant professor to tenured professor and holder of two endowed chairs, while also serving as Chief Medical Officer at Children’s Health in Dallas. He went on to serve as Vice Chancellor for Research and Strategic Initiatives with the Texas A&M University System and Chief Executive Officer of the Texas A&M Health Science Center. His federal and state government service leadership includes membership on the Defense Sciences Research Council (DSRC), Director of the Defense Sciences Office branch of the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA), membership on the Board of Directors for NASA’s National Space Biomedical Research Institute, and Chair of the Veterans Choice Act Blue Ribbon Panel to assess United States Veterans Health Administration, according to mandates in The Veterans Access, Choice and Accountability Act of 2014.

Throughout his storied career, Dr. Giroir has received plentiful awards and uniformed service decorations. Some of these honors include: the American Society of Nephrology Presidential Medal; the American Society of Hematology Outstanding Public Service Award; the Executive Office of the President Office of National Drug Control Policy’s Director’s Distinguished Service Award; U.S. Public Health Service Distinguished Service Medal with Gold Star Attachment; the Surgeon General’s Medallion, the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response Pinnacle Medal, the Global Health Campaign Medal; and the Secretary of Defense Medal for Outstanding Public Service.

Currently, Dr. Giroir serves as Chief Executive Officer and a member of the Board of Directors for Altesa Biosciences, Inc., a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company focusing on developing new treatments for respiratory viruses and global viral threats. This role comes on the heels of his taking up a front-line role in the COVID-19 response as Director of the White House Coronavirus Task Force and national "Testing Czar" leading testing and diagnostics.

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