The Honorable John Edward Porter

Research!America Chair

John Edward Porter is a former partner and currently a Senior Advisor in the international law firm of Hogan Lovells LLP. He served 21 years as U.S. Congressman from the 10th district in Illinois, where he served on the Appropriations Committee and as chair of the subcommittee on Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education. Under his subcommittee’s jurisdiction were all the health programs and agencies (including NIH and CDC, but excepting FDA) and all of the education programs and agencies of the federal government. During his chairmanship, he led efforts resulting in doubling funding for the National Institutes of Health.

He was founder and co-chairman of the Congressional Human Rights Caucus, a voluntary association of more than 250 Members of Congress working to identify, monitor and end human rights violations worldwide. He co-authored legislation creating Radio Free Asia and served as Chair of the Global Legislators Organized for a Balanced Environment (GLOBE USA).

He chairs Research!America and is vice-chair of the Foundation for the National Institutes of Health. He is a member of the National Academy of Medicine of the National Academy of Sciences, and for 32 years was a member of the Council on Foreign Relations. He was Chairman of PBS, a trustee of the Brookings Institution and served on the boards of the RAND Corporation, the American Heart Association, the PBS Foundation and the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts. Among over 275 awards for his service in Congress is the Mary Wood Lasker Award for Public Service.

Before his election to Congress, Porter served in the Illinois House of Representatives, and prior to that as an Honor Law Graduate Attorney with the U.S. Department of Justice in the Kennedy Administration.  He attended MIT and is a graduate of Northwestern University and with distinction of the University of Michigan Law School. Porter has 10 honorary degrees.

The 845,000 square foot John Edward Porter Neuroscience Research Center on the campus of the National Institutes of Health is named in his honor. Porter is the 2024 recipient of the National Academy of Sciences Public Welfare Medal, the Academy’s highest honor. 

Funding research gives all of us a better chance of living a healthier life.
Pam Hirata, heart disease survivor