Staff Profile: Joan Davis Nagel

Joan Davis Nagel, M.D., M.P.H.
Joan Davis Nagel, M.D., M.P.H.

Medical Officer

Division of Clinical Innovation
Clinical and Translational Science Awards Program Branch
Initiatives and Consortium Wide Activities Section

National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences

National Institutes of Health

Email Joan Davis Nagel


Joan Davis Nagel is a medical officer and program director in the Initiatives and Consortium-Wide Activities Section of the Clinical and Translational Science Awards (CTSA) Program Branch within NCATS’ Division of Clinical Innovation, where she oversees several CTSA Program research grants and works collaboratively with principal investigators to provide programmatic direction and oversight of their clinical and translational science projects. Nagel most recently served as the program official for NCATS’ Recruitment Innovation Center under the Trial Innovation Network for more than two years where she promoted evidence-based, inclusive strategies for recruitment and retention in multicenter clinical trials. She currently is NCATS’ representative to the Collaboration and Community Engagement Enterprise Committee, a consortia-wide committee that focuses on engaging stakeholders and stakeholder communities so they contribute meaningfully across the translational sciences spectrum. She also was the inaugural NCATS representative to the Workforce Development Domain Task Force Lead team from 2014 to 2019.

Before assuming her current role, Nagel was a medical officer and program director for the Office of Research on Women’s Health, specifically the Building Interdisciplinary Research Careers in Women’s Health (BIRCWH) program and the  Specialized Centers of Research on Sex Differences research project grants. In that role, she managed a portfolio of interdisciplinary and translational clinical research grants that focused on examining sex and gender factors as they affect health and disease as well as on supporting the research careers of junior faculty BIRCWH scholars who are conducting women’s health research. Nagel joined NIH in 2002 as a program director in the Reproductive Science Branch of the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development, where she oversaw a research portfolio that supported and advanced the research careers and mentoring of women’s health researchers. She has knowledge and expertise in developing, implementing and fostering the interdisciplinary research careers and multidisciplinary mentoring of junior faculty researchers. In addition, she has expertise in inclusive community engagement and best practices for recruitment and retention, as well as in diversifying populations in clinical trials.

Nagel earned a B.A. in biology from Williams College, an M.D. from the State University of New York at Buffalo and an M.P.H. from the Johns Hopkins School of Hygiene and Public Health. Her background includes training in obstetrics and gynecology, followed by a residency in general preventive medicine at the Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions.

Before coming to NIH, Nagel worked as a city clinician for the New York City Department of Health Bureau of Sexually Transmitted Diseases and as a medical consultant for the Urban Women’s Retreat, a shelter for survivors of domestic violence in Harlem.

Professional Interests

Nagel is enthusiastic about seeing research findings translated to actual improvements in health for patients, populations and communities. She has strong research interests in women’s health and sex and gender factors as they affect health and disease, innovative approaches to mentoring and career development for the next generation of clinical and translational science researchers, and inclusive community engagement.

Selected Publications

  1. KL2 Scholars’ Perceptions of Factors Contributing to Sustained Translational Science Career Success
  2. Immediate Impact of the COVID-19 Pandemic on CTSA TL1 and KL2 Training and Career Development
  3. Building the Women’s Health Research Workforce: Fostering Interdisciplinary Research Approaches in Women’s Health