On November 4, Ms. Michelle Bulls began her position as director of the Office of Policy for Extramural Research Administration, also known as OPERA, within the Office of Extramural Research. Ms. Bulls had served as acting director of OPERA for the past six months and is well respected throughout federal government agencies for her grants policy expertise. As OPERA director, Ms. Bulls provides trans-NIH direction regarding grants policy and compliance monitoring for the grants management offices of the 24 NIH institutes and centers that support extramural research. (Read more about OPERA’s mission and responsibilities on the OPERA homepage on grants.nih.gov.)
Ms. Bulls has over 20 years of grants administration (policy and operations) experience, She started her career as a grants technical assistant, grants management specialist, and grants management officer in the in the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute at NIH. She has since served in several high-level postiions within the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), including director of grants management for the Indian Health Service, and director of grants policy oversight and evaluation in the HHS Office of the Secretary.
In her short time back at NIH, Ms. Bulls has already demonstrated her keen leadership skills both within NIH and across the extramural community. She also continues to lead Federal-wide efforts in drafting and implementing financial assistance regulations and policies, and is a leader in collaborative efforts to promote grants management efficiency and efficacy not just at HHS but across the Federal government.