Aimbe Public Policy Institute

Learn from Washington Insiders about how public policy impacts biomedical engineering!

White House Official Robbie Barbero, Ph.D., Assistant Director for Biological Innovation for the Office of Science and Technology Policy address the White House Role in Science Policymaking.

Participants network with Philip Desjardins, J.D., Vice President of Global Regulatory Affairs & Intelligence for Medical Devices at Johnson & Johnson.

The AIMBE FDA Scholars discuss regulatory policy with Patricia Shrader, J.D., Vice President of Global Regulatory Affairs for Medtronic.


This institute is open to current undergraduate and graduate students, post docs, and early career fellows (including executive branch fellows) in Medicine, Engineering, and Health Sciences interested in the public policy landscape shaping science, innovation, and discovery.

Program Description

This program explores how public policies shape medical and biological engineering. You will have the opportunity to hear from regulatory agencies such as the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the National Institute of Health (NIH). You will listen to policy experts and thought leaders explain the ramifications of proposed regulatory and policy initiatives. You will attend sessions taught by industry giants in the medical device and innovation sector. You will meet with government decision makers developing the public policies that govern patents, medical devices, pharma, and health and science legislation. You will network with early career participants in health and engineering across the nation.

By the end of the Institute, participants will be able to:

  • Describe the current regulatory science framework and its role in the decision-making about the risks and benefits of medical products.
  • Describe federal health policy initiatives that shape research and funding decisions
  • Understand the role of the executive and legislative branches in developing policies governing the scientific enterprise
  • Identify hot button issues in regulatory policy and health policy
  • Identify the numerous stakeholders shaping public health in Washington, affecting the nation

Highlighted Speakers:

  • Ed Margerrison, Ph.D., Director, Office of Science and Engineering Laboratories, Center for Devices and Radiological Health, FDA
  • Grace Peng, Ph.D., Director of Computational Modeling, Simulation and Analysis, National Institute of Biomedical Imaging and Bioengineering (NIBIB), National Institutes of Health (NIH)
  • Mahlet Mesfin, Ph.D., Deputy Director, Center for Science Diplomacy, American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS)
  • Brenda Huneycutt, PhD, JD, MPH, Director, Regulatory Innovation, FasterCures
  • Joshua D. Sarnoff, J.D., Law Professor, DePaul University and Former Director, Center for Intellectual Property Law & Information Technology
  • Ashley W. Wittorf, Executive Director, AdvaMed Accel; Global Head, Investor Relations
  • Jacob Carter Ph.D., Research Scientist, Center for Science and Democracy, Union of Concerned Scientists
  • Richard Harris, Award-winning journalist, NPR
  • Leah Kegler, Director of Government Affairs, Edwards Lifesciences
  • Whitney Gardiner, Senior Director of Government Affairs, Medtronic


The cost for the Institute is $395. Space is extremely limited to encourage open discussion and networking. Registration will close once the event reaches capacity; early registration is encouraged to reserve your space. Registration is available at the top of the page.

Travel Awards for Underrepresented Minorities (URM)

AIMBE and BMES are committed to building pathways and developing professional networks for underrepresented minorities (URM) to increase their retention and career success in biomedical engineering. To that end, AIMBE and BMES are partnering to introduce URM to public policy and the mechanisms shaping medical innovation and the scientific enterprise in Washington, from Capitol Hill to the Executive Branch. Under the auspices of the Coulter-funded BMES BME Minority Network program, travel awards will be available for up to 25 underrepresented minority undergraduate students, graduate students and postdocs to attend the annual AIMBE Public Policy Institute for Rising Leaders workshop. This 2-day workshop held in Washington, D.C., offers training in regulatory science and public health policy. Participants will have the opportunity to speak directly with world-wide regulatory leaders, public policy experts, health care advocates, top government officials and industry leaders; and to expand their career and networking options. Participants will also meet and hear from a high proportion of URMs serving in top science policy positions and role models in medical and biological engineering throughout industry and government. The deadline for the travel awards has passed. 

Meeting Location

Alston & Bird LLP

950 F Street NW, 2nd floor conference room    

Washington, DC 20004

Hotel Information

AIMBE does not reserve a block of rooms for the Policy Institute. Listed below are several hotels near the meeting location, where the Institute will take place. The meeting location is across from the Gallery Place/Chinatown Metro stop on the Red, Green, and Yellow lines. For more information about traveling to and from the meeting location, please see their website.

Courtyard Washington Convention Center (closest hotel)
900 F St NW, Washington, DC 20004
Phone: (202) 638-4600

Renaissance Washington, DC  (.04 mile, 8 minute walk)
999 9th St NW, Washington, DC 20001
Phone: (202) 898-9000

Marriott Fairfield Inn & Suites (.05 mile, 11 minute walk)
500 H St NW, Washington, DC 20001
Phone: (202) 289-5959 


Contact Sarah Mandell, AIMBE Director of Public Policy and Strategic Partnerships