Monday, February 18, 2019

UTSA first-ever Research External Advisory Council convenes

UTSA first-ever Research External Advisory Council convenes

(April 23, 2018) -- Leveraging best practices from research-intensive universities across the country, the newly-created UTSA Office of the Vice President for Research, Economic Development and Knowledge Enterprise (VPREDKE), has created its first Research External Advisory Council (REAC). The group, comprised of accomplished professionals in their fields – industry, military, nonprofit, cybersecurity, biosciences, and research institutions, both locally and nationally – met on Friday, April 20 on campus to kick off an exploration of UTSA’s research enterprise, find new avenues to expand research funding and partnerships, and raise our profile beyond the region.

The VPREDKE executive team will present the structure and activities of the offices that comprise the new division: Michelle Stevenson, Research Integrity; Beth Manning, Research Operations and Finance; Jaclyn Shaw, Research Support; Christine Burke, Commercialization and Innovation; and Robert McKinley, Institute for Economic Development (IED). Key research strategic initiatives, such as the National Security Collaboration Center, NRUF and Carnegie Classification, will be discussed and the day will conclude with campus and research laboratory tours.

“We carefully selected council members who could not only assess our research enterprise objectively, but who could also bring new approaches beyond the academic perspective we possess. The REAC will evaluate our programs and output, and in the coming year, advise us on ways to best expand our research, relationships and funding dollars, particularly as we align our operations with the Institute of Economic Development, given our new structure. Collectively, we will define the knowledge enterprise at UTSA and how best to engage to benefit our students, faculty, staff and partners,” explained Bernard Arulanandam, Jane and Roland Blumberg Professor in Biosciences and interim vice president for research, economic development and knowledge enterprise.

The members of the UTSA Research External Advisory Council are:

Yvonne K. Addison, PMP
Program Manager, StandardAero

Gregory Neal Akers
Senior Vice President of Advanced Security Initiatives, Cisco

Walt Downing, P.E.
Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer, Southwest Research Institute

Yvonne Fernandez
Vice President of Commercial Operations, Security Service Federal Credit Union

Renee Forney
Sr. Director of Cyber Assurance, Capital One

Andrea Giuffrida, Ph.D. 
Vice President for Research, University of Texas Health Science Center San Antonio

Martin J. Landon
CEO, BioBridge Global

Lieutenant General James Kevin McLaughlin
Former 24th AF Commander/ Deputy Commander for USCYPERCOMM (retired)

Jim Reed
President, San Antonio Medical Foundation

Richard Perez
President and CEO, San Antonio Chamber of Commerce

GP Singh, Ph.D.
Vice Chairman, Santikos

Joanne Turner, Ph.D.
Vice President for Research, Texas Biomedical Research Institute

James J. Valdes, Ph.D.
Principal CB Defense Engineer/ Defense Technology Directorate, MITRE Corporation

UTSA’s total research expenditures increased from US $56.8 million in FY 2016 to US $68.1 million in FY 2017, an increase of 19.9 percent. The university’s restricted research expenditures grew from US $36.4 million in FY 2016 to US $40.1 million in FY 2017. UTSA is ranked among the top four universities in the nation under 50 years old, according to Times Higher Education.

- Sarah Hada


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The University of Texas at San Antonio is dedicated to the advancement of knowledge through research and discovery, teaching and learning, community engagement and public service. As an institution of access and excellence, UTSA embraces multicultural traditions and serves as a center for intellectual and creative resources as well as a catalyst for socioeconomic development and the commercialization of intellectual property - for Texas, the nation and the world.

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