(COLLEGE STATION, TX) — Joseph Sharkey, Ph.D., M.P.H., R.D., associate professor in the Texas A&M Health Science Center School of Rural Public Health, recently accepted an invitation to join the National Institutes of Health Community-Level Health Promotion study section.

To be considered for this position, members must possess “demonstrated competence and achievement in their scientific discipline as evidenced by the quality of research accomplishments, publications in scientific journals, and other significant scientific activities, achievements and honors,” said Antonio Scarpa, M.D., Ph.D., director of the NIH Center for Scientific Review.

As part of the study section, Dr. Sharkey will review grant applications involving large-scale, community-based and community-oriented intervention research projects.

“I’m honored to be part of a group that helps our nation’s medical research agency in its decisions to fund research studies that extend healthy life and reduce the burdens of illness and disability,” Dr. Sharkey said. “Working with our target populations in the Brazos Valley and the Lower Rio Grande Valley gives me a unique perspective on community health issues and effective methods by which public health researchers address those issues.”

Dr. Sharkey’s current research includes efforts to better understand the influence of aspects of the home, neighborhood and community environments on nutritional health and the role of nutritional status and medication use in the maintenance of physical function among older adults. His work has been recognized with several awards from the American Public Health Association, the Office of Rural Health Policy Award for Excellence in Research on Aging and Rural Health, and the Betty J. Cleckley Minority Issues Research Award.

— Rae Lynn Mitchell