What We Do:
The Public Information and Liaison Branch is responsible for NIDA’s information dissemination activities:
- Conducts NIDA's media outreach activities
- Responds to information inquiries from the public
- Leads NIDA’s public information activities and public education campaigns, including National Drug Facts Week
- Coordinates content development and review of all NIDA science-based messaging disseminated to the public
- Assesses needs and designs materials for specific populations
- Collaborates with other Federal agencies to promote dissemination and application of NIDA research
- Manages the development and dissemination of NIDA publications
- Provides graphic support services to Institute staff to enhance dissemination of the science.
- Publishes NIDA Notes newsletter about NIDA-supported research activities.
- Carol Krause, M.A., Branch Chief, PILB
Ms. Krause joined the Office of Science Policy and Communications (OSPC) in 2006 as the Chief of the Public Information and Liaison Branch (PILB), where she has launched several innovative programs, including National Drug Facts Week, the first Addiction Science Awards at the annual INTEL Science and Engineering Fair, and the National Centers of Excellence for Physician Information. As Chief, PILB, Ms. Krause oversees a staff of communications professionals with expertise in Web, media, publications, and health education campaigns. In other government service, Ms. Krause was selected to be the first Communications Director of the HHS Office on Women’s Health (HHS OWH) in 1997 and launched the National Women’s Health Information Center, the government’s premiere health Web site for women, which won a designation as one of the Top Ten government Web sites in the year 2000, and soon after achieved the highest grade of all government web sites rated by the American Customer Satisfaction Index (ACSI). Ms. Krause has more than 25 years’ experience in health education in the public and private sector. She began her career as an Emmy Award winning television journalist covering medical and political issues, and has written a nationally published book on family medical histories. Carol has a B.A. in Political Science from the George Washington University and an M.A. in Communications and Public Affairs from American University.
- Stephanie Older, J.D., Deputy Branch Chief
Stephanie Older became the Publication Information and Liaison Branch’s Deputy Branch Chief in early 2013, managing publications and media efforts, as well as supporting virtually all outreach activities across the Branch. She joined NIDA’s press team in 2008, and became the press team leader in 2010, when she launched NIDA’s social media program, energized NIDA’s media response capabilities and enhanced outreach to high school and college journalists. Her prior communications experience includes media work for both corporate and non-profit organizations, most notably as the media liaison for the National Breast Cancer Coalition. Ms. Older holds a law degree from the University of Baltimore as well as a B.A. in communication from the University of Pennsylvania. Prior to joining NIDA, she served as Attorney-Advisor to an Associate Chief Judge at the U.S. Department of Labor.
- David Anderson, Public Health Advisor
Mr. Anderson joined the Public Information and Liaison Branch in the Office of Science Policy in February 1999 and assumed the editorship of NIDA Notes. In 2002 he founded NIDA’s peer reviewed journal Science & Practice Perspectives (subsequently renamed Addiction Science & Clinical Practice; AS&CP), and edited both publications until 2011, when Evans Medical Foundation and Biomed Central acquired AS&CP. Mr. Anderson has been Senior Editor of RN, a journal for nurses, and Contemporary Internal Medicine, for primary care physicians. He has also served as founding editor of CV Nurse and contributing editor to Patient Care and Business & Health magazines. Mr. Anderson has a master's degree in Population and International Health from Harvard School of Public Health, and has written original research and policy monographs on international issues in abortion, AIDS, male fertility, and Russian mortality for the International Union for the Scientific Study of Population. Other health-related organizations he has worked with include the Pan American Health Organization, Pathfinder International, Data for Decision-Making, and the Harvard Center for Population and Development.
- Kimberly DiFonzo, Deputy Press Officer
Ms. DiFonzo joined the Office of Science Policy and Communications (OSPC) in April 2008 with over 20 years of public relations experience working for trade associations, non-profit organizations and public relations firms. Her experience combines a broad knowledge of healthcare communications and media relations, as well as educational program development and execution. Kim is a member of the NIDA press team and responds daily to inquiries from national, local and social media on a wide variety of issues related to drug addiction research. She prepares spokespeople for media interviews, assists with the implementation of media outreach campaigns and events, including National Drug Facts Week and Monitoring the Future, and writes and edits various press materials. Prior to NIDA, Kim worked in the public relations office at the American Psychological Association, wrote public relations materials on behalf of the President of the American Nurses Association, served as a national spokesperson for the blood services program at the American Red Cross, and managed the Campaign on Clinical Depression while at Burson-Marsteller. Kim received a Bachelor of Science degree in Psychology from Lynchburg College in Lynchburg, VA.
- Kathryn Kaplan, Media Specialist (Contractor)
Ms. Kaplan joined the Office of Science Policy and Communications (OSPC) in March of 2015 as a contractor to work with the NIDA press team. In this role, she is responsible for responding to inquiries from national and local media on issues related to drug addiction research. She helps prepare spokespeople for media interviews, assists with the implementation of media outreach campaigns, and helps disseminate the latest scientific research related to addiction to the general public. Prior to joining NIDA, Ms. Kaplan was an Account Supervisor at SpeakerBox Communications, a boutique technology public relations firm where she worked for five years. Ms. Kaplan received her Bachelor’s degree in communication from the University of Maryland, College Park.
- Brian Marquis, Program Analyst
Mr. Marquis joined the Office of Science Policy and Communications (OSPC) in January 2002 as the Information Center Manager for the Public Information and Liaison Branch. He is now the NIDA Public Liaison Officer and connects with organizations across the country with the help of NIDA publications and Web sites. Prior to joining OSPC, Mr. Marquis worked at the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality Publications Clearinghouse and as a contractor at National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute. He has a B.S. in Family Studies from University of Maryland, College Park.
- Melissa Mera, B.S., Bilingual Health Communications Specialists (Contractor)
Ms. Mera joined the Public Information and Liaison Branch (PILB) in the Office of Science Policy and Communications (OSPC) in January 2016 as a contractor to assist with providing support for developing and updating educational materials. She manages the content for all Spanish-language materials, including publications and NIDA’s Spanish-language website, and provides bilingual support for social media and public inquiry responses. Melissa has recently graduated with a Bachelor's of Science in Public Health. While in school Melissa interned for different nonprofit organizations where she assisted in strategizing, planning, organizing, lobbying, and advocating for policies.
- Juli Rose, Writer/Editor (Contractor)
Ms. Rose joined the Office of Science Policy and Communications (OSPC) in December 2014 as a contractor to assist with writing, editing, content management, and other publication and dissemination efforts. Juli has more than 7 years of experience as a writer and editor, mainly in the areas of health information and curricula. She is familiar with the NIH, previously providing writing and editorial support as a contractor for the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases’ (NIDDK’s) information clearinghouses. Prior to working with the NIDDK, Juli worked for My Health World, Inc. as a curriculum specialist, developing online health education curriculum for student audiences. Juli received her Master’s degree in creative writing/English from Florida State University.
- Shirley Simson, Press Officer
Ms. Simson joined the Office of Science Policy and Communications (OSPC) in March of 2006. She has almost 20 years of experience developing, managing, and implementing successful public relations programs, with an emphasis on health communication and social marketing. Ms. Simson has worked on behalf of a number of federal clients, including the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration; the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention; the Food and Drug Administration; and the U.S. Department of Transportation. She also spent two years as a media spokesperson for the national headquarters of the American Red Cross. As a member of the NIDA press team, her responsibilities include responding to daily inquiries from national and local media on a wide variety of issues related to drug addiction research; scheduling and preparing NIDA spokespeople for press interviews; conducting proactive media outreach activities in support of NIDA press events and meetings; and writing and editing press materials. Ms. Simson received a Bachelor of Arts degree in Communication from the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, Michigan.
- Jennifer Sizemore, Communications Contract Team Lead (Contractor)
Ms. Sizemore joined the Office of Science Policy and Communications (OSPC) in September 2014 as a contractor to manage NIDA’s online and print resources. This includes identifying annual priorities and assigning and tracking writing, reviewing, printing, and posting. She has more than 17 years of professional experience producing and managing the production of written products for specific audiences, including effectively implementing the tenets of plain language for audiences with low literacy. Ms. Sizemore has experience with a variety of subject matter, including drug and alcohol abuse, digestive and kidney diseases, infectious diseases, women’s health, complementary and integrative medicine, and cancer. She holds a Bachelor’s degree in Chemistry from St. Mary’s College of Maryland and a Master’s degree in Chemistry from Syracuse University, and is a certified Editor in the Life Sciences.