Commercialization Council

Harry Orf, PhD

Harry Orf, PhD, is Senior Vice President for Research at Massachusetts General Hospital. Dr. Orf holds an undergraduate degree in chemistry from the University of Missouri-St. Louis and a doctoral degree in chemistry from Harvard.

Dr. Orf’s 35-year career in science and administration has bridged scientific research, research administration, teaching and education outreach, and biotechnology start-ups. He has made significant contributions to education outreach through his service on various scientific organizations dedicated to the promotion of science and education. After graduate school, Dr. Orf conducted research in organic and bio-organic chemistry and served as Dean of Mather House at Harvard College. He became the Inaugural Director of Biochemical Laboratories at Harvard University, overseeing the construction and staffing of the Fairchild Biochemical Laboratories while serving as Lecturer in Chemistry and Biochemistry in the Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology. In 1983, Dr. Orf moved to Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) to become its first Director of Molecular Biology Laboratories.

He spent a year in Iraq on active duty as a Colonel in the U.S. Army during Operation Iraqi Freedom. Shortly after returning home, Dr. Orf was named Vice President for Scientific Operations and Professor of Chemistry at The Scripps Research Institute, where he directed the construction of its new 350,000 square foot research complex, and built and directed the entire science support operation. In February 2012, Dr. Orf left Scripps Florida to become Senior Vice President for Research at Massachusetts General Hospital, where he oversees the largest hospital-based research program in the nation, with more than 6,000 researchers, 1,400 principal investigators, 1 million square feet of dedicated research space, and $750 million of annual research revenue.

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