Vice President Pence Announces Ambassador Debbie Birx to Serve as the White House Coronavirus Response Coordinator

February 27, 2020

Today, Vice President Mike Pence announced the following individual to a key position on his team to combat the spread of the Coronavirus:

Ambassador Debbie Birx, to serve as the White House Coronavirus Response Coordinator.

Ambassador Birx is a world-renowned global health official and physician. She will be detailed to the Office of the Vice President and will report to Vice President Mike Pence. She will also join the Task Force led by Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar.  She will be supported by the National Security Council staff. Dr. Birx serves as the U.S. government’s leader for combatting HIV/AIDS globally and will continue to oversee this critical work through her able Deputy Angeli Achrekar, while bringing her interagency expertise and coordination that brought ground-breaking progress to the global HIV/AIDS pandemic to the Coronavirus response in the White House.

Ambassador Birx is a scientist, physician, and mom, with three decades of public health expertise, including virulent diseases, their vaccines, and interagency coordination. She has been utilizing the best science to change the course of the HIV pandemic and bring the pandemic under control, community by community and country by country.  Her focus over three decades has been on HIV/AIDS immunology, vaccine research, and global health. She has developed and patented vaccines, including leading one of the most influential HIV vaccine trials in history. Three different Administrations across both political parties have relied on her knowledge and judgement. Ambassador Birx has previously coordinated the Army, Navy, and Air Force in their HIV/AIDS efforts and led the CDC’s Division of Global HIV/AIDS, Center for Global Health, and their global implementation of the President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief program.  She has deep experience in coordinating across agencies. She has worked from the research bench to the clinic, but understands the primary focus must always be to reach the individuals most in need. She will bring her infectious disease, immunologic, vaccine research and interagency coordinating capacity to this position.