Meet Our Scientists

When you join the Commissioned Corps, you become part of a dedicated team of professionals who work to improve the health of individuals, communities, and the Nation.

Meet some of the science and research health professions officers in the Commissioned Corps below.

  • Captain George Jones
    Science and Research Health Professionals Officer, Office of Public Health and Science

    A career in uniform
    CAPT Jones was born into a military family and has continued the uniformed services tradition in his own diverse career. “As I get older, I feel a bit like everyone’s grandfather. I take that kind of care in the work that I do,” he says. He was on active and inactive duty with the U.S. Navy until he transferred to the Commissioned Corps in 1990. In his current position, CAPT Jones is the director of the Office of Military Liaison and Veterans Affairs in the Office of Public Health and Science, Office of the Secretary, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). CAPT Jones works as an HHS liaison between the Department of Defense and Department of Veterans Affairs in the areas of military and veterans’ health to provide care for those who have borne the battle. “My work positively impacts all current and past service members and their families. I feel a close bond to young people who serve and defend the Nation. They are indeed the clear and rightful heirs of World War II’s greatest generation,” he says.

  • Captain Douglas Allen Thoroughman
    Science and Research Health Professionals Officer, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

    Taking emergency preparedness to a new level
    CDR Thoroughman's job in the U.S. Public Health Service Commissioned Corps puts him at the forefront of public health preparedness efforts, helping to build Kentucky's capacity to respond to public health emergencies like disease outbreaks. CDR Thoroughman has coordinated Kentucky's smallpox preparedness and vaccination program, consulted on numerous disease outbreak investigations, and advanced the field of epidemiology. He also has provided emergency response, conducting disease surveillance in Texas shelter evacuees for both Hurricane Katrina and Hurricane Rita. "A career in the Commissioned Corps provides many opportunities to serve our country in a positive and meaningful way," CDR Thoroughman says.

  • Captain Pamela Ching
    Science and Research Health Professionals Officer, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

    Making a difference around the world
    In August 2005, CAPT Ching was a part of a team conducting the first comprehensive nutrition and health survey in the Republic of Niger, greatly affected by chronic food shortages. Survey results assessed risk and malnutrition levels, vaccination coverage, communicable and water-borne diseases, health status, and hunger in children and pregnant and lactating women. CAPT Ching says, "People are more alike than different in their desire to do what is best for families and children. Most people are honest and willing to work very hard to bring vital health services to their countries." As senior staff epidemiologist and director of research at the CDC's National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases, she has designed and evaluated public health programs in 18 countries, and worked with research scientists and epidemiologists associated with WHO, UNICEF, USAID, the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC), the Program for Appropriate Technology in Health (PATH), and the World Food Programme. CAPT Ching says, "I have had the opportunity to work with public health professionals abroad and interacted with foreign cultures and people in a meaningful way—a way I would not have been able to if I had visited their countries as a tourist."