In December 2008, the National Institutes of Health (NIH) sponsored the first NIH Summit showcasing its investment and contribution to health disparities research and unveiling a framework for moving this important field forward. The Summit, titled "The Science of Eliminating Health Disparities," drew on extensive experience of experts leading health disparities research transformation in diverse fields. The Summit also provided a historic educational opportunity to contribute to health care reform. The theme, addressing disparities through integration of science, practice, and policy, introduced a paradigm for advancing research through transformational, translational, and transdisciplinary research. Engaging active participation throughout the Summit generated recommendations bridging science, practice, and policy, including action on social determinants of health, community engagement, broad partnerships, capacity-building, and media outreach.