James F. Battey, M.D., Ph.D., Acting Director of the National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders (NIDCD), began his education at the California Institute of Technology, where he earned a B.S. with honors in physics. He earned his M.D. and Ph.D. at Stanford University. His postdoctoral fellowship at Harvard Medical School was under the direction of the eminent scientist, Dr. Philip Leder.
Dr. Battey has served the NIH since 1983, first on the staff of the National Cancer Institute (NCI), followed by an appointment as the chief of the Molecular Neuroscience Section in the Laboratory of Neurochemistry, National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS), and returning to the National Cancer Institute to head the Molecular Structure Section of the Laboratory of Biological Chemistry in 1992.
The Public Health Service has honored Dr. Battey with both its Public Health Service Commendation Medal in 1990 and the Public Health Service Outstanding Service Medal in 1994. Dr. Battey also serves as an adjunct professor at the George Washington School of Medicine. He is author or coauthor of over 100 research articles and is coauthor with Davis and Kuehl of Basic Methods in Molecular Biology now in its second edition.
In 1995 Dr. Battey was named and is currently the Director of the Division of Intramural Research for the NIDCD. As the Institute's Scientific Director he has encouraged and overseen an emerging program studying the molecular genetics of diseases and disorders of human communication affecting more than 46 million Americans. Under his leadership there has been a restructuring of intramural clinical research and the development of significant laboratories and staff for the study of many diseases and disorders including otitis media, several forms of hereditary hearing impairment, stuttering, and autism as well as the creation of a new laboratory of chemosensory research.