Cindy McConnell joined NIA in February 2019 as director of its Office of Communications & Public Liaison. NIA OCPL is responsible for the Institute’s strategic communications planning and initiatives, including messaging, website design and content, media relations, social media, video production, publications, and event promotions.
Cindy previously served as the first chief of the Communications Branch at the NIH National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences, which launched in 2011. Prior to NCATS, she was the communications director for the NIH’s former National Center for Research Resources.
Before joining the NIH in 2008, Cindy was senior director of membership, development and communications at Research!America, where she worked closely with industry, academia and patient advocacy groups on strategies to advance research to improve health.
Cindy also has directed communications for national nonprofit organizations focused on education, was a registered budget and appropriations lobbyist, and worked in marketing at USA TODAY.
She believes that communications professionals play a crucial role in scientific research by disseminating clear, accurate information about NIH programs, policies, initiatives and successes. She is dedicated to working closely with NIA scientific staff to effectively communicate promising aging-related research advances.