seal2002 Honorary Degree

Sidney A. Mcnairy Jr.

Doctor Of Science

Sidney A. McNairy has gained favor and distinction for his dedication to advancing the nation’s biomedical research systems and for broadening opportunities for underrepresented minorities.

Sidney A. McNairy

Currently working within the Department of Health and Human Services at the National Center for Research Resources in Bethesda, Md., Dr. McNairy is the associate director of research infrastructure. He has been the driving force behind the success of a number of innovative federal grant programs that help strengthen biomedical research infrastructure at both emerging and research-intensive biomedical institutions throughout the nation and its territories.

A native of Memphis, Tenn., Dr. McNairy graduated from St. Augustine High School and LeMoyne-Owen College in his hometown before moving to West Lafayette. He earned two degrees from Purdue University – a master’s in biochemistry in 1962 and a doctorate in the same field in 1965.

Prior to starting his 28-year career at the NCRR-NIH, Dr. McNairy was a professor of chemistry for 10 years at Southern University in Baton Rouge, La. He also served as a guest scientist for several companies and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, focusing on carbohydrate and lipid metabolism.

He began his federal career in 1974 as a health scientist administrator at the National Institutes of Health, the nation’s premier biomedical research organization.

The NIH is the principal agency that supports research that focuses on causes, effects, prevention and treatment of human disease. The NCRR is the nation’s leading federal sponsor of resources through congressionally appropriated funds that enable scientific inquiry and advances in biomedicine. The grant support provided for science education has spawned unique partnerships among biomedical and behavioral researchers, educators, community groups and prestigious science museums.

During his career, Dr. McNairy has been a leader in developing programs that address health-related science education for K-12 students and the general public.

Dr. McNairy has been the recipient of numerous awards and honors, including an honorary doctorate degree from Texas Southern University, designation as an Old Master by Purdue and induction into the Golden Parade of Alumni at LeMoyne-Owen College. He also was honored with the NIH’s Director’s Award, appointment to the federal government’s Senior Executive Service and selection by Harvard University’s John F. Kennedy School of Government to participate in the Program of Senior Managers in Government.