EAST GREENSBORO, N.C. (July 16, 2019) – North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University announced Raymond E. Samuel, M.D., Ph.D., has been named director of the Center for Outreach in Alzheimer’s Aging and Community Health (COAACH), effective July 15.
Samuel brings to COAACH strong managerial and leadership skills honed while performing the duties and responsibilities as founder of an educational start-up company, as an assistant dean for research and associate professor at Hampton University, and as contact principal investigator of research consortia addressing biomedical workforce, minority men’s health disparities research and STEM workforce expansion.
COAACH is the nation’s most prominent academic research institution focusing primarily on the impacts of Alzheimer’s disease and other age-related illnesses on African Americans, who are three times more likely than Caucasians to contract Alzheimer’s. It has developed innovative programs to both support African-American families dealing with Alzheimer’s and involve Alzheimer’s sufferers in clinical research trials.
“COAACH is widely recognized for the special impact it has achieved over the past decade and the resources it has created for patients and families struggling under the weight of Alzheimer’s,” said Dr. Beryl McEwen, provost and executive vice chancellor for academic affairs at North Carolina A&T State University. “We are delighted to have selected a leader of Dr. Samuel’s stature to build upon COAACH’s distinct mission and to expand its opportunities as a research institute.”
Samuel has an esteemed record of building interinstitutional collaborations and transdisciplinary research programs among academic programs and external partners.
Samuel most recently served as project director of the Hampton University-based Minority Men’s Health Initiative (MMHI), which leveraged the talent and resources of historically black colleges and universities to address health disparities in African-American male populations. The initiative is funded by the National Institutes of Health in Washington, D.C.
As project director, Samuel led the development and implementation of a pilot project that recruited and supported early career HBCU faculty members’ initial immersion into transdisciplinary health disparities research. He also designed and executed an innovative Community Fellows Program that taught young adult men from rural communities the basics of health disparities and how to develop and implement primary prevention health promotion interventions in their communities.
Samuel has been actively engaged in enhancing the diversity of the biomedical research workforce. He led a national consortium that competed for the NIH National Research Mentoring Network (NRMN) program, which developed comprehensive mentorship, networking and professional development programs to meet the needs of underrepresented minorities.
In addition, he created and administered a visionary Path-To-Professorship Program as the cornerstone of the Hampton University Partnership for Research and Education in Materials through which post-doctoral fellows were afforded appointments as research assistant professors and assisted in their transition to developing independent research activities and obtaining tenure-track faculty appointments.
“I am excited to further COAACH’s progress toward solidifying its status as the premier Center of Excellence on Memory and Cognition in the HBCU and African-American communities,” Samuel said. “COAACH will build upon the solid foundation of its Alzheimer’s disease clinical studies and its Caregivers Network support services to disseminate and implement evidence-based strategies known to reduce the burden of modifiable risk factors for cognitive decline and dementia in the elderly populations.
“COAACH will continue to provide comprehensive outreach, education, training and research programs that improve the quality of life of elderly dementia patients and decrease the burden of responsibilities on their families who provide the bulk of patient care.”
Samuel, a native of Saint Vincent and the Grenadines in the Caribbean, earned his Bachelor of Science in chemical engineering from Massachusetts Institute of Technology in Cambridge and his Master of Science and doctorate, both in physiology and biophysics, and his doctor of medicine all from Yeshiva University in New York. He and his wife, Dr. Sheila Tapp, have two sons, Joseph and David.