MSU resumes search for research vice president after COVID interruption

Contact: Harriet Laird

STARKVILLE, Miss.—The 21-member search committee responsible for the selection of Mississippi State’s new vice president for research and economic development is reconvening after a pause due to COVID-19.

The committee, with 10 elected faculty and administrative members appointed by MSU President Mark E. Keenum, is chaired by university Vice President for Student Affairs Regina Hyatt.

“We believe now is the right time to resume this essential search. This pandemic has shone a great spotlight onto the importance of MSU’s research enterprise as evidenced by the innovative and creative activities our faculty and researchers turned to in response to the needs of our university, state and nation during this crisis,” Hyatt said. “It has also made more evident the tremendous impact MSU makes in the economic development of our region and state. As we have found our rhythm of a new semester, it is time to re-engage the search process so we can be best prepared to continue our prominence in these critical university areas.”

Julie Jordan has been leading this vital research division since June of last year as the interim vice president of research and economic development. Prior to Jordan’s appointment, MSU’s Provost and Executive Vice President David Shaw led the university’s research sector, Mississippi’s leader in innovation and creative discovery that is responsible for more than $244 million in research expenditures in fiscal year 2018. Nationally, MSU is one of only 120 institutions to hold the Carnegie Foundation’s R1 “Very High Research Activity” designation and is a “Top 100” National Science Foundation research university.

Search committee members, under Hyatt’s direction, include:

Angi Bourgeois, Dean and Professor, College of Architecture, Art, and Design

Trey Breckenridge, Director, High Performance Computing Collaboratory

Art Cosby, Director and Professor, Social Science Research Center

Dipangkar Dutta, Professor, Department of Physics and Astronomy, College of Arts and Sciences

Mark Fincher, Associate Professor, MSU-Meridian Division of Education

Ra’Sheda Boddie-Forbes, Assistant Vice President for Multicultural Affairs and Director, Holmes Cultural Diversity Center

Charles Freeman, Associate Professor, School of Human Sciences, College of Agriculture and Life Sciences and Mississippi Agricultural and Forestry Experiment Station

Robert Grala, Professor, Department of Forestry, College of Forest Resources and Forest and Wildlife Research Center

Hans Herrmann, Associate Professor, School of Architecture, College of Architecture, Art and Design

Carla Huston, Professor, Department of Pathobiology and Population Medicine, College of Veterinary Medicine

Mary Ann Jones, Associate Professor, Mitchell Memorial Library

Margaret Khaitsa, Professor, Department of Pathobiology and Population Medicine, College of Veterinary Medicine

Billy Klauser, Associate Director, Alliance for System Safety of UAS through Research Excellence (ASSURE)

Bob Otondo, Associate Professor, Department of Management and Information Systems, College of Business

Shahram Rahimi, Professor and Head, Department of Computer Science and Engineering, Bagley College of Engineering

John Rush, Vice President for Development and Alumni

Nancy Siegert (ex officio), Chief Human Resources Officer, Office of Human Resources Management

Kasey Strickland, Director, Office of Research Compliance

Jerry Toney, Treasurer, MSU Alumni Association National Board of Directors

Carol White, Assistant Professor, Department of Educational Leadership, College of Education

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Thursday, September 24, 2020 - 10:38 am