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Staff Profile: Olga Brazhnik

Olga Brazhnik, Ph.D.

Program Director/Computer Scientist

Division of Clinical Innovation

National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences

National Institutes of Health

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Olga Brazhnik is a program director and computer scientist in the Division of Clinical Innovation, where she manages and directs various aspects of the Clinical and Translational Science Awards Program.

Brazhnik received her Ph.D. in physics from Moscow State University in Russia, where she developed theoretical and computational methods and knowledge bases for biology and medicine. In 1993, she was awarded a research grant and went to work at the James Franck Institute at the University of Chicago before moving to a job at Virginia Tech. After her search for data and knowledge integration technologies had led her into the professional information technology (IT) world, Brazhnik created bioinformatics databases at the newly established Virginia Bioinformatics Institute and was the chief database architect on epidemic outbreak surveillance projects and real-time integration of clinical systems for the U.S. Air Force Surgeon General’s Office.

Brazhnik joined NIH in 2004. In the Office of the Chief IT Architect and the National Center for Research Resources, she facilitated the adoption of innovative approaches to developing data-intensive biomedical computing, collaborative technologies, health informatics, data and knowledge integration, modeling, and visualization. She also led numerous trans-NIH initiatives and organized Crowdsourcing: The Art and Science of Open Innovation in 2011 and Wiki Fair in 2007. She joined NCATS at its inception and directed the SBIR program in its first year.

Professional Interests

With her systems scientist mindset and a passion for empowering individuals to become their best and happiest, Brazhnik unites technology with contemplative studies to produce sustainable health outcomes, innovative environments and enriching multidisciplinary collaborations. As a certified Life Coach, she volunteers in teaching and coaching the principles of transformational leadership for the Presidential Management Fellow (PMF) Leadership Development and Federal Internal Coach Training Programs. She has founded and leads the NIH Conscious Dancer Club and co-leads the NIH recreational volleyball team.