Rachel Ramoni

Rachel B. Ramoni, D.M.D., Sc.D., has been Chief Research and Development Officer (CRADO) for the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) since January of 2017. VA is responsible for research breakthroughs like the cardiac pacemaker, devices that restore breathing and coughing in people with spinal cord injuries, watchful waiting for low-risk prostate cancer, and the approval of the first shingles vaccine for use in the U.S. At VA, she is working to achieve three strategic goals: (1) increasing Veterans’ access to high quality clinical trials, (2) increasing the substantial real-world impact of VA research, and (3) putting VA data to work for Veterans. Rachel has a passion for leading large, multidisciplinary endeavors towards practical impacts, and she is willing to roll up her sleeves to ensure the success of efforts she leads. Prior to her work at VA, she was at New York University and Harvard Medical School where she directed two major projects. The first was SMART, which brought her into the CHIP family and led to SMART on FHIR. The second, the Undiagnosed Diseases Network (UDN), brings together clinical and research experts from across the U.S. to solve challenging medical mysteries using advanced technologies. The Boston Globe called the network a "powerful new way to diagnose mystery illnesses." As of August 2019, the Network had diagnosed 330 of what the New York Times referred to as “the toughest cases, patients whose symptoms have defied explanation”. In her current role as CRADO, Rachel oversees VA's nationwide research enterprise, encompassing some 2,000 active projects at more than 100 sites, including the Million Veteran Program, which has enrolled over 760,000 Veterans. Her office’s total budget in fiscal year 2019 was $779 million. She loves her job and is eternally grateful to Zak Kohane for giving her the opportunity to work on SMART and the UDN.