The Henry M. Jackson Foundation for the Advancement of Military Medicine Inc. was authorized by Congress in 1983 to support military medical research. Since our founding, HJF has served as a vital link between the military medical community and our federal and private partners.
Shortly after President Richard Nixon called for an end to the draft in 1970, military leaders and politicians realized they could no longer rely on conscripts to provide medical care for members of the armed services. To remedy that situation, Nixon signed a law on Sept. 21, 1972, establishing the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences (USU), a facility its strongest advocate, Louisiana Rep. F. Edward Hebert, called "the West Point of military medicine."
Although Congress did not authorize the Foundation until 11 years later, the 1972 establishment of USU laid the groundwork for HJF's creation.
The University was established to train medical crops officers for the uniformed services. USU also offers graduate and doctoral training and conducts basic and clinical research. These efforts are broadly necessary to academic medicine. Research and clinical practice, but it soon became clear that USU would be able to accomplish more and function with greater ease if it partnered with a private foundation.
That idea turned into action when Sen. Henry M. Jackson of Washington championed a bill that would create such a foundation. On May 27, 1983, President Ronald Reagan signed a bill establishing the Foundation for the Advancement of Military Medicine, a private, not-for-profit organization. Congress added Jackson’s name to the Foundation’s title five months later, shortly after the senator’s death.
HJF’s core missions s outlined in the bill remain as relevant as ever: to support medical research and education at USU and throughout military medicine and to serve as a link with the private medical sector. Ultimately, the Foundation strives to improve both military and civilian health.
HJF marked a milestone in fiscal 2009 when our employee ranks exceeded 2,000. By the end of the fiscal year, the Foundation’s2,037 employees worked in 24 states and the District of Columbia, as well as nine nations. Approximately 90 percent of HJF employees work side by side with military medical researchers in the field.