Christopher M. O'Connor, MD, MACC, FESC, FHFSA, FHFA, joined Inova as the chief executive of Inova Schar Heart and Vascular in April 2015. In this role, Dr. O'Connor directs Inova's system-wide cardiovascular strategy, expanding the clinical, research and education programs, and recruiting notable cardiac and vascular professionals to further Inova's stature as a national and international cardiovascular leader.
During his tenure at Inova, he has applied the scientific rigor of a clinical investigator to promote a culture of excellence in research and bring about outstanding clinical outcomes.
In addition to his work at Inova, Dr. O'Connor is Professor of Medicine, Duke University and Editor in Chief Emeritus of JACC: Heart Failure. He serves on the editorial boards for various top-tier medical and cardiovascular journals and has authored more than 900 publications, 3 textbooks and 15 textbook chapters. He has consistently been an invited speaker and moderator at the annual scientific meetings of national and international societies, has served in leadership roles in major professional societies, is a Past President of the Heart Failure Society of America and is the 2021 recipient of the American College of Cardiology’s Distinguished Clinical Scientist Award.
Dr. O'Connor returned to the Washington, DC, area after 31 years at Duke University Medical Center in Durham, North Carolina. While at Duke, his research earned him worldwide recognition as an authority on heart failure. Prior to joining Inova, he served at Duke as the Richard Stack Distinguished Professor of Medicine, Chief of the Divisions of Cardiology and Clinical Pharmacology and Director of the Duke Heart Center.
He is highly regarded internationally for leadership in clinical trials addressing therapeutics for the treatment of acute and chronic heart failure and his work has uncovered links in how mood disorders and stress affect heart disease, and also has led to insights into pharmacologic and non-pharmacologic therapies to treat heart failure.
He earned a Bachelor of Science degree in chemistry from the University of Maryland College Park and his medical degree from the University of Maryland Medical School in Baltimore. He went on to Duke to complete his internship, residency, chief residency and cardiology fellowship.