May 18, 1999
Reminiscences from the
U.S. Department of
Health and Human Services
New Advisory Group Meets for First Time
COPR Provides New Forum for Interacting with Public
By Carla Garnett
NIH director Dr. Harold Varmus (second from l) convenes the first meeting of new advisory group.
Less than a year after considering ways to add more public input and
participation to the agency's activities, NIH director Dr. Harold Varmus
convened the first meeting of the newly formed Council of Public
Representatives (COPR, pronounced "copper") on Apr. 21. On the director's
fast track to implementation since last July, COPR went from conception to
fruition in fewer than 10 months. Ideally, the council will provide NIH with
20 more ambassadors to and from U.S. communities, groups and individuals
who may not be familiar with the agency, its mission and the fruits of its
A 'Center without Walls'
By Rich McManus
The metaphor of a "center without walls," born 2 years ago in
Wilson Hall when NIH director Dr. Harold Varmus apprised the
intramural community of President Clinton's challenge to create an
HIV vaccine within a decade, has acquired a new adherent in Dr.
Gary Nabel, who became VRC director Apr. 11.