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Portier Honored by World Innovation Foundation

By Eddy Ball
January 2007

Chris Portier
World Initiative Foundation Member Chris Portier (Photo courtesy of Steve McCaw)

The World Innovation Foundation (WIF) has announced the appointment of NIEHS Associate Director Christopher Portier, Ph.D., to its prestigious group of members and fellows. According to the organization, "Membership in the World Innovation Foundation is now becoming considered in many parts of the world...[as] recognition of being a major global innovator of the highest order."

With his appointment, Portier joins a distinguished international group of intellectuals who are leaders in their respective fields. The members include a number of Nobel laureates, heads of international organizations and inventors. WIF invites into its membership individuals who have profoundly influenced the development of research and made innovative applications in their fields. The foundation honored Portier for his contributions to environmental medicine and the development of cutting-edge toxicological risk assessment.

Portier has been with NIEHS since 1979, when he came to the Institute as a doctoral student. He is currently the director of the Office of Risk Assessment Research and the principal investigator with the Environmental Systems Biology Group. He also is serving temporarily as scientific advisor to the director, Public Health and the Environment, World Health Organization. From 2001 to 2005, Portier was associate director of the interagency National Toxicology Program (NTP), and he was the moving force behind the development of the NTP "Roadmap," which was released in 2005 as part of the NTP 25th Anniversary Celebration in Washington, D.C.

When the Institute appointed him as director of the Office of Risk Assessment Research, NIEHS Director David A. Schwartz, M.D., praised Portier's accomplishments as the leader of the NTP. "Dr. Portier has done an extraordinary job in overseeing the activities of the National Toxicology Program, and has developed strong relationships with scientists all over the world," Schwartz observed. "This new NIEHS leadership role will allow him an opportunity to merge the fields of toxicology and environmental health sciences and prepare the world for tomorrow's health challenges."

WIF describes itself as "the only fully 'independent' scientific, technological, engineering and applied economic 'think-tank' in the world today. The WIF has no direct financial ties to any governments or corporate entities. It is therefore a free-thinking group of the world's foremost creative minds." WIF honorary members and fellows collaborate in consultations for the benefit and enlightenment of peace-abiding governments and nations throughout the world. The foundation aims to foster peace on the planet by promoting health, economic development and scientific progress for all.

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