VETERAN TO HEAD VA GULF WAR ADVISORY
Vietnam Veterans of America - January 25, 2002
VA Creates Gulf War Advisory Committee
WASHINGTON � Secretary of Veterans Affairs Anthony J. Principi today announced a new advisory committee that will help the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) oversee its research into the medical problems of Gulf War veterans.
\\\\\\\"Gulf War veterans have waited too long for answers to many of their questions,\\\\\\\" Principi said. \\\\\\\"This committee, composed of medical experts and veterans, will focus on the research that we hope will improve the health of ill Gulf War veterans.\\\\\\\"
The 12-member Research Advisory Committee on Gulf War Veterans\\\\\\\' Illnesses was established by Congress to advise the VA secretary on proposed research studies.
The panel must submit an annual report on the status and results of government research during the previous year and on research priorities identified by the committee. The group\\\\\\\'s charter, established by Section 104 of Public Law 105-368, which was signed Nov. 11, 1998, says the panel shall \\\\\\\"provide advice and make recommendations to the Secretary of Veterans Affairs on proposed research studies, research plans and research strategies relating to the health consequences of military service in the Southwest Asia theater of operations during the Persian Gulf War.\\\\\\\"
Although the panel will not conduct research, its charter instructs the committee to review \\\\\\\"all relevant research, investigations, and processes\\\\\\\" done in the past to assess methods, results and implications for future research. The committee will also review proposed federal research plans, initiatives, procurements, grant programs and other activities regarding Gulf War-associated illnesses.
The committee will be led by James H. Binns Jr., a Vietnam veteran, former principal deputy assistant secretary of defense, and chairman of the board of Parallel Design, Inc., of Tempe, Arizona, acquired by General Electric in December 2000.
The advisory committee will be assisted by an expert panel of scientists and subject matter authorities who will add additional expertise, functioning as an auxiliary that reviews committee findings and provides expert guidance to the committee and the Secretary.
Membership of Research Advisory Committee on Gulf War Veterans\\\\\\\' Illnesses and Expert Panel Advisory Committee:
� James H. Binns Jr., Chairman,
� Dr. Nicola Cherry, Professor of Public Health Sciences at the University of Alberta,
� Dr. Beatrice Golomb, assistant professor of medicine at the University of California at San Diego,
� Dr. Robert Haley, chief of the epidemiology division of the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas,
� Marguerite Knox, nurse practitioner, Hopkins, S.C.,
� Dr. William J. Meggs, chief of the division of toxicology of the East Carolina University School of Medicine,
� Jack Melling, Ph.D., director of the Karl Landsteiner Institute for Vaccine Development in Vienna, Austria,
� Dr. Pierre Pellier, vice president, neurosciences, global medical affairs, with GlaxoSmithKline, Inc.,
� Lea Steele, Ph.D., director, Kansas Persian Gulf War Veterans Health Initiative and former epidemiologist with the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention,
� Joel C. Graves, an Army Gulf War veteran fromWashington state,
� Stephen L. Robinson, executive director of the National Gulf War Resources Center; Silver Spring, Md.,
� Steve Smithson, assistant director of the Gulf War Task Force for the American Legion, Indianapolis, Ind.
The Expert Panel:
� Dr. Ira B. Black, chairman, department of neuroscience and cell biology at the Robert Wood Johnson Medical School, Piscataway, N.J.,
� Dr. Joseph T. Coyle, Eben S. Draper professor of psychiatry and neuroscience, Harvard Medical School, Belmont, Mass.,
� Dr. Floyd E. Bloom, chair, department of neuropharmacology, Scripps Research Institute, La Jolla, Calif.,
� Dr. Eugene Johnson, professor, department of neurology, WashingtonUniversity, St. Louis, Mo.,
� Dr. Marsel Mesulam, director, The Cognitative Neurology and Alzheimer\\\\\\\'s Disease Center, Northwestern University Medical School, Chicago,
� James J. Tuite, III, chief operating officer, Chronix Biomedical, Inc., Benicia, Calif.,
� Dr. Bailus Walker, Jr., professor of environmental and occupational medicine, Howard University, Washington, D.C.