Dr. Heather Alice Manley comes to the CBTS with extensive experience in managing large-scale, federally funded research efforts and serves a joint appointment with the Texas A&M University System Office of the Vice Chancellor for Research, which gives the Center wide accessibility across the entire System of 11 universities, eight state agencies, and core resources. Her role as Executive Director includes scientific leadership and oversight of the research and education portfolios and day-to-day activities of the Center, managing programs, transition, and evaluation; working closely with the Program Directors and Director. Along with the leadership team, she facilitates communication with stakeholders in partner universities, agencies, and private industry.
Dr. Manley came to the Texas A&M System in 2010 from the Defense Threat Reduction Agency (DTRA) where she was a member of the senior leadership team and a Contracting Officer’s Technical Representative for the Transformational Medical Technologies (TMT) program, a 5-year, $1.5 billion, Initiative to revolutionize discovery and development of broad-spectrum medical countermeasures and platform technologies to counter biological threats and emerging infectious diseases. Prior to her tenure at TMT, Dr. Manley provided technical, scientific and programmatic support to the Office of the Assistant to the Secretary of Defense for Nuclear, Chemical and Biological Defense Programs at the Pentagon, and to the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) on projects encompassing prevention of disease and injury, and maintenance of combat readiness in the Warfighter.
Dr. Manley received her B.A. in Psychology and Biology from Creighton University in Omaha, NE and her Ph.D. in biomedical research from the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, MN. She is a Mayo-trained clinical laboratory technologist and served at the Texas A&M Institute for Preclinical Studies as a Research Scientist and Good Laboratory Practices (GLP)-compliant preclinical study director. She conducted her post-doctoral research in the neurotoxicology branch at the U.S. Army Medical Research Institute for Chemical Defense.