VP for Research Recommended to A&M Board of Regents

By: Texas A&M Email
By: Texas A&M Email

COLLEGE STATION- Dr. Jeffrey R. Seemann, who currently holds key administrative, research and service positions at the University of Rhode Island, will be recommended to The Texas A&M University System Board of Regents at its May 21-22 meeting for appointment as vice president for research at Texas A&M University. His proposed start date is July 1.

Texas A&M President Elsa A. Murano will formally recommend Dr. Seemann’s appointment with concurrence from A&M System Chancellor Michael D. McKinney.

If confirmed, Dr. Seemann will succeed Dr. Theresa A. Maldonado, who has served as interim vice president for research since Oct. 1, 2008, and who will remain as executive associate vice president for research, Dr. Murano said.

Dr. Seemann, who was selected for recommendation after an extensive national search that attracted applicants and nominations from many leading institutions in the United States , presently serves as dean of the College of the Environment and Life Sciences at the University of Rhode Island , as well as director of the Rhode Island Agricultural Experiment Station and Cooperative Extension Service. He has held all three positions since 2001.

“We are obviously pleased with the prospect of having someone of the caliber of Dr. Seemann serve in this extremely important position on our campus,” noted Dr. Murano.“I am confident that he can effectively build on our strengths as one of the nation’s top research universities, while also providing visionary leadership for the evolving strategic development, implementation, and communication of research, scholarship, and graduate studies at Texas A&M.”

Texas A&M Provost and Executive Vice President for Academics Jeffrey S. Vitter applauded the recommendation, citing Dr. Seemann’s impressive credentials. “Dr. Seemann has impressive experience directing research programs at the University of Rhode Island and the University of Nevada at Reno . I am looking forward to working with him to elevate the research enterprise across Texas A&M University and to develop the Landmark Research areas identified through the Academic Master Plan process,” Vitter said.

As the new vice president for research, Dr. Seemann will be responsible for facilitating institutional research initiatives; administering all aspects of the university's sponsored research program; formulating and implementing policies for the utilization and distribution of research-related funds; and overseeing federal, state, and local assurance and research compliance programs, Dr. Vitter said.

Dr. Seemann said he looks forward to joining Texas A&M and helping the university attain its “top 10” public university aspirations.

“Texas A&M University is an extraordinary institution, and under the visionary leadership of a new president and provost, and with an absolutely world-class faculty, it is clearly poised to leap from the ranks of the top 20 research institutions in the country to the top 10,” he said. “I am deeply honored to have been asked to participate in the leadership of this exciting enterprise, and I look forward to partnering with everyone in the Texas A&M community, both inside this great university and out, to accomplish this goal.”

After receiving his undergraduate degree with honors in biology from Oberlin College, Dr. Seemann earned his Ph.D. in biological sciences from Stanford University . He held faculty and administrative positions with the University of Nevada System and the University of Nevada at Reno prior to going to the University of Rhode Island .

Research and development funding by Texas A&M and its affiliated agencies rose to a record $582 million for fiscal year 2008, an increase of $38 million over the previous all-time high set in 2007, according to figures reported to the National Science Foundation. Texas A&M’s research expenditures rank third nationally among institutions that do not include medical schools, behind only the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and the University of California at Berkeley .

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