ORO Executive Director
As Executive Director of the Office of Research Oversight (ORO), Dr. Puglisi serves as a principal advisor to the Under Secretary for Health and implements procedures to ensure regulatory compliance related to the protection of human subjects, laboratory animal welfare, research safety and security, and research misconduct in VA research. Tom joined the VA with more than 20 years experience in research compliance, 10 years as a funded research investigator, and 5 years as a consultant in the private sector. Tom previously served as the Director of Human Subject Protections in the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Office for Human Research Protections (OHRP, formerly the Office for Protection from Research Risks, (OPRR), where he was responsible for implementing requirements for the protection of human subjects in research supported by the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). While in OHRP/OPRR, Tom was responsible for hundreds of compliance oversight investigations and contributed to much of OHRP’s current guidance. Tom has worked extensively with a variety of Federal Agencies and private organizations on human subject protection issues. Prior to his service in HHS, Tom was an Associate Professor of Psychology at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte (UNCC), where he conducted research in Experimental and Developmental Psychology and Human Aging, coordinated the Interdisciplinary Program in Gerontology, and chaired the Human Subjects Institutional Review Board (IRB). He received research grants from the National Institute on Aging (NIA), the Administration on Aging (AoA), and the HHS Office of Human Development Services (OHDS). From 1986 to 1987, Tom was a Congressional Science Fellow with the Select Committee on Aging in the US House of Representatives. Tom has testified before various Committees of the US House of Representatives, a number of Institute of Medicine (IOM) panels, and the National Bioethics Advisory Commission (NBAC). He served as a member of the Subpart A Subcommittee of the HHS Secretary’s Advisory Committee on Human Research Protections (SACHRP) and as a member of the Accreditation Council of the Association for Accreditation of Human Research Protection Programs (AAHRPP). Tom received his PhD in the Psychology of Aging and Life Span Development from the Ohio State University in 1978. He is a fellow of the American Psychological Association.