New Airways Clinical Research Centers Chair Brings 35 Years of Experience on the Cutting Edge of Research

Following the retirement of Dr. William Bailey after 11 successful years leading the Airways Clinical Research Centers (ACRC), the American Lung Association announced today that it named Lewis Smith, M.D., as the new Chair.

Dr. Smith is Professor Emeritus of Medicine at Northwestern University’s Feinberg School of Medicine. He has a deep history of clinical research that includes work as the Northwestern University consortium center principal investigator for the ACRC from its inception until 2017, and co-principal investigator for the Chicago center of the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute (NHLBI) supported AsthmaNet program.

“Dr. Smith has more than 35 years in clinical research, with extensive experience in asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) epidemiology, pathophysiology, and treatment. He has been with our Chicago ACRC site since it its inception, where we have seen the incredible impact of his work,” said Harold Wimmer, national president and CEO of the Lung Association. “Throughout his career, Dr. Smith has made significant contributions to lung health and truly improved the lives of people living with asthma and COPD. It is an honor to welcome him as the leader of our critical ACRC network.”

The Lung Association’s proprietary ACRC Network is the nation’s largest not-for-profit network of clinical centers dedicated to asthma and COPD research and includes experts working together to produce results directly affecting patient care. The network has more than 35 sites across the nation, plus a data coordinating center managed by a team at Johns Hopkins University. The Network positively impacts patients through large patient-focused clinical trials led by some of the best investigators nationwide.  

This announcement is a testament to the Lung Association’s continued focus on increasing lung health research. Just last week, the organization announced that it increased its research funding to award $12.6 million to more than 100 research grants. The funded projects address a wide range of lung health topics, including COVID-19 in children, the public health impacts of e-cigarette policy and lung cancer in never smokers. Dr. Smith begins this new role on January 1, 2022.

Learn more about the Lung Association’s ACRC Network and research efforts at

For more information, contact:

Jill Dale
[email protected]

Asthma Basics Workshop - National
, | May 07, 2024
Asthma Basics Workshop - National
, | May 15, 2024