Staff Profile: Cindy McConnell

Cindy McConnell
Cindy McConnell

Chief, Communications Branch

Office of Policy, Communications and Education

National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences

National Institutes of Health

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Cindy McConnell is chief of the NCATS Communications Branch, a position she’s held since the Center’s launch in December 2011. She directs NCATS’ strategic communications planning and initiatives, including messaging, website design and content, media relations, social media, video production, publications, and event promotions. She is certified as a contract officer’s representative.

McConnell joined NIH in 2008 as communications director for the National Center for Research Resources. Previously, she was senior director of membership, development and communications at Research!America, where she worked closely with industry, academia and patient advocacy groups on strategies to advance research to improve health.

McConnell also has directed communications for national nonprofit organizations focused on education, was a registered budget and appropriations lobbyist, and worked in marketing at USA TODAY. She holds a B.A. in communication arts from Salisbury University and earned an accreditation from the Public Relations Society of America.

Professional Interests

McConnell believes that communications professionals play a crucial role in scientific research by disseminating clear, accurate information about NIH programs, policies, initiatives and successes. She is dedicated to working closely with NCATS scientific staff to effectively communicate the many promising and transformative translational research advances that can help get more treatments to more patients more quickly.