OR News & Announcements

Institute for Innovation Transition of Industry Contract Officers, and Sponsored Projects Reorganization

Effective Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Dear Colleagues,

Late last year, UCI announced the creation of the UCI Institute for Innovation (“Institute”), an interdisciplinary and campus-wide center focused on the vision of “creating a vibrant, interconnected and self-sustaining community of students, scholars, industries and entrepreneurs,” in the words of Chancellor Howard Gillman. A key to this vision is integrating industry-sponsored research, technology transfer, development and entrepreneurship.  The Institute is under construction, literally, as space at Research Park is being renovated to accommodate staff and administrative offices as well as shared spaces to encourage University-Industry interaction and small business startups.

The Institute created several Industry Contract Officer positions to handle all proposals and awards that are directly or indirectly funded by industry/for-profit organizations.  These new positions will report to Kevin Kennan, Associate Director, Intellectual Property Administration, Office of Technology Alliances.  The first position was filled in March by Natalie Nodianos, formerly the Principal Contract and Grant Officer in Sponsored Projects.  Angie Karchmer and Chris Abernethy, currently both Principal Contract and Grant Officer in Sponsored Projects, will be joining the Institute as Industry Contract Officers effective June 1, 2015.

The creation of the Institute afforded Sponsored Projects the opportunity to review its current organizational structure for efficiency and alignment with the campus needs. The review resulted in the realignment of our current team structure and the creation of a clinical trials unit. We believe this new structure will enable Sponsored Projects to better respond to the campus needs and the growth of the research enterprise. The updated Sponsored Projects organizational chart can be found here: http://www.research.uci.edu/about/docs/org-charts/sponsored-projects.pdf.

As a result of the realignment, the Contract and Grant Officers, who are assigned to review proposals and awards where funding is directly awarded to UCI from a federal agency, will now be supervised by the Supervising Principal Contract and Grant Officer. Similarly, the Senior Contract and Grant Officers, who are assigned to review proposals where funding is directly awarded to UCI from a non-federal agency, will now be supervised by the 2nd Supervising Principal Contract and Grant Officer. The Officer’s departmental assignments will not change as a result of the realignment. Sandra Stevens, Associate Director, will oversee the Contract and Grant Officers and Senior Contract and Grant Officers until the Supervising Principal Contract and Grant Officer positions are filled. The Supervising Principal Contract and Grant Officers will report to Sandra Stevens once those positions are filled.

Tam Tran, Assistant Director, will oversee the newly created clinical trial unit that will be responsible for negotiating clinical trial agreements that are directly or indirectly funded by industry. Heather Kubinec, currently Principal Contract and Grant Officer for Team A, will join the clinical trial team. Recruitment is underway to fill the second clinical trial negotiator position.

To ensure a smooth transition, provided below is the transition plan effective Tuesday, May 26th:

  • Chris Abernethy (Team C)  / Angie Karchmer (Team D):
      • Retain, negotiate, finalize, and process all Principal Contract and Grant Officer items received in Sponsored Projects as of May 26, 2015;
      • Continue to take on new incoming industry proposals, awards, confidentiality agreements, teaming agreements, Memo of Understandings and other such agreements assigned to the Institute but only for departments (see list at https://apps.research.uci.edu/orastaff/staff.cfm?view_department=spda) currently assigned to them;
      • For non-Institute (i.e. State, Foreign and miscellaneous agreements) items, Sandra Stevens (sandrams@uci.edu) will serve as the point of contact;
      • For industry clinical trial agreements, Tam Tran (tamkt@uci.edu) will serve as the point of contact;
      • Supervision of the Senior Contract and Grant Officers and Contract and Grant Officers will be transitioned to Sandra Stevens until the vacant Supervising Principal CGO Positions are filled.
  • Heather Kubinec (Team A):
      • Retain, negotiate, finalize, and process all Principal Contract and Grant Officer items received in Sponsored Projects prior to May 26, 2015;
      • Transition to the Sponsored Projects Industry Clinical Trial (CT) Team and assume responsibility for all new incoming industry clinical trial agreements for departments currently assigned (see list at https://apps.research.uci.edu/orastaff/staff.cfm?view_department=spda) and all new master agreements and modifications. For new incoming industry proposals, awards, confidentiality agreements, teaming agreements, MOUs and other agreements assigned to the Institute received after May 26, 2015 for departments currently assigned to Team A, Kevin Kennan (kkennan@uci.edu) will be the point of contact;
      • For non-Institute (i.e. State, Foreign and miscellaneous agreements) items, Sandra Stevens (sandrams@uci.edu) will serve as the point of contact;
      • Supervision of the Senior Contract and Grant Officer and Contract and Grant Officer will be transitioned to Sandra Stevens until the vacant Supervising Principal Contract and Grant Officer position is filled;
      • Tam Tran will coordinate with Heather on the master agreements and modifications until the 2nd Principal Contract Officer for Industry Clinical Trial position is filled.

Please note that your process of routing proposals in Kuali Coeus (“KC”) will not change for now—continue to enter them into KC and specify the appropriate team (A, B, C or D) until further notice—they will be routed to the appropriate unit for processing.   We are in the process of updating KC to reflect the changes due to Sponsored Projects realignment of the teams and addition of the Institute. We will notify you when changes to Kuali Coeus for routing of proposals are complete.

Please forward this information to faculty and staff in your unit that will be impacted by this transition.

We thank you in advance for your patience and understanding during this transition period. We are excited as this change will overall allow both the Institute and Sponsored Projects to provide better service to support our campus research enterprise.

Should you have any questions, please feel free to contact Kevin Kennan or Nancy Lewis.

Kevin Kennan
Associate Director,
Intellectual Property Administration
Office of Technology Alliances
Institute for Innovation
kkennan@uci.edu
www.ota.uci.edu

Nancy Lewis
Director, Sponsored Projects
Sponsored Projects Administration
Office of Research
nrlewis@uci.edu
www.research.uci.edu/