University of South Carolina

New VP for research and graduate education named

Stephen Kresovich, vice provost for life sciences and professor at Cornell University, has been named vice president for research and graduate education at Carolina, effective Oct. 1.

Stephen Kresovich
Stephen Kresovich

Kresovich succeeds Rose Booze, who served as interim vice president for research since last August and was associate vice president for research from 2006 to 2008. During Booze’s tenure in the Office of Research and Economic Development research funding grew dramatically. Booze has been named founding director of a new University-wide Brain and Behavior Institute.

"Rose played a vital role in many research initiatives, and her leadership will continue to be important in the new institute,” said University of South Carolina President Harris Pastides. "Carolina's faculty members have an impressive record of sponsored research, and I believe Stephen Kresovich has the necessary skills to help keep our research enterprise moving aggressively forward.

"We're excited as well about the synergies of combining graduate education with the vice president for research position."

Kresovich said he is looking forward to working across the University to develop more opportunities.

"I am really impressed with the breadth and comprehensive nature of South Carolina's research and graduate programs; there are many pockets of excellence throughout the University," said Kresovich, who has also served as director of Cornell’s Institute for Genomic Diversity and Institute for Biotechnology and Life Science Technologies and was interim vice provost for research in 2007.

As vice provost for life sciences, Kresovich has led strategic planning, fund raising, faculty hiring, new facilities planning, development of shared core research facilities, and support of educational and training activities for Cornell's New Life Sciences Initiative.

He sees his primary role at Carolina as one of advocacy and network building.

"Anything I can do to recruit, retain, or otherwise optimize working conditions for the University’s faculty is the most important thing I can do," he said. "I plan to work nationally and internationally to find new sources of funds that will help us take on initiatives in all disciplines, from the sciences and engineering to humanities and the arts. For a comprehensive institution to be great, balance is important, and that means building pillars in disciplines such as English and history as well as the physical sciences and engineering. 

"It will be imperative for me to know and work closely with key players and key initiatives across the campus and throughout the University system. I like building teams that can bring a vision to reality."

In his own research Kresovich has collaborated with faculty at Clemson University and has met faculty with similar interests at the Medical University of South Carolina and the College of Charleston. He envisions Carolina cultivating more inter-institutional research partnerships and tailoring its graduate programs to the needs of the state.

"I'm really impressed by Carolina’s commitment to serve the state and link its research with economic development -- that message came across from the president and all of the deans and faculty members I met," Kresovich said.

Kresovich received his bachelor’s degree in biology from Washington and Jefferson College, a master's in agronomy at Texas A&M University, and a Ph.D. in crop physiology and genetics from The Ohio State University in 1982. Following graduation, he conducted research at Battelle Memorial Institute and Texas A&M University. Prior to joining the Cornell faculty, he was laboratory director at two U.S. National Genetic Resources Program gene banks in New York (1987-93) and in Georgia (1993-98). Kresovich’s internationally recognized research focuses on conservation genetics. He is a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science.

Kresovich is married to Janice Kilburn, a lecturer at Ithaca College who earned a Ph.D. in developmental psychology. They have two sons, Jacob and Alexander, who both are 2008 Cornell graduates.

Posted: 07/30/09 @ 12:00 AM | Updated: 08/18/09 @ 4:38 PM | Permalink