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U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

Biography: Rick A. Bright, Ph.D.

Deputy Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response
Director of the Biomedical Advances Research and Development Authority
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

Rick A. Bright, Ph.D. is the Deputy Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response and the Director of the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA), which is a component of the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response in the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

He oversees the advanced development and procurement of medical countermeasures against an array of threats to national security and the public’s health, including chemical, biological, radiological, nuclear threats and pandemic influenza, and emerging infectious diseases.

Dr. Bright began his career in vaccine and therapeutics development at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, with a focus on influenza viruses, antiviral drugs and the development of novel assays for high throughput surveillance for resistance to antiviral drugs. For this work, Dr. Bright was a recipient of the Charles C. Shepard Science Award for Scientific Excellence.
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Dr. Bright has extensive experience in the biotechnology industry where he served in senior leadership and executive management roles. Dr. Bright has also held senior scientific leadership positions in non-governmental organizations where he championed innovative vaccine development and international vaccine manufacturing capacity expansion in developing countries.


Dr. Bright serves as an international subject matter expert in vaccine, drug and diagnostics development and has served as an advisor to the World Health Organization and the United States Department of Defense. Dr. Bright joined BARDA in 2010, and prior to becoming Director in late 2016, he served as Director of the BARDA’s Influenza and Emerging Infectious Diseases Division. Dr. Bright received his Ph.D. in Immunology and Virology from Emory University and his B.S. in Biology and Physical Sciences from Auburn University.

  • This page last reviewed: September 01, 2017