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About NIMH Deputy Director Shelli Avenevoli, Ph.D.

Shelli Avenevoli, Ph.D., Deputy Director of NIMH

Shelli Avenevoli, Ph.D., is the Deputy Director for the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH). NIMH is the lead federal agency for research on mental illnesses, and seeks to transform the understanding and treatment of mental illnesses through basic and clinical research, paving the way for prevention, recovery, and cure.

In 2001, Dr. Avenevoli joined the NIMH intramural research program as a staff scientist in the Section of Developmental Genetic Epidemiology of the Mood and Anxiety Disorders Program. In 2005, she moved to the NIMH division of extramural research as Chief of the Emotion, Mood, and Depressive Disorders Program. In 2008, Dr. Avenevoli became Chief of the Developmental Trajectories of Mental Disorders Branch. She has been heavily involved in a number of key NIMH efforts, including revising NIMH’s Strategic Plan, re-defining the Institute’s approach to supporting research in neurodevelopment and bipolar disorder, and serving as a liaison to other agencies for special initiatives.

Prior to joining NIMH, Dr. Avenevoli received her Ph.D. in Developmental Psychology from Temple University, and completed an NIMH-funded postdoctoral fellowship in psychiatric epidemiology at Yale University School of Medicine.