About Research & Innovation

About the division

Dr. Mridul Gautam

Vice President for Research and Innovation

Mridul GautamResearch & Innovation exists as a service organization for the University faculty. We focus on enhancing research enterprise by supporting collaboration and innovation.

We strive to provide faculty with the resources necessary to succeed in their goals of educating students, conducting research and contributing to regional economic development.

We are focused on managing the support organizations that assist faculty in obtaining and managing funding, conducting research with integrity and in a safe and healthy environment, and facilitating connections with industry.

We want to continue to build a collaborative University setting where faculty can form connections and work on interdisciplinary research that produces discoveries with wide ranging effects.


Our vision is to create an environment that will enable the faculty and students to excel in their research, scholarly and creative activities, and enhance the status of the University of Nevada, Reno as an internationally recognized research university.


Our research and innovation activities are aligned with the goals of the University’s Institutional Strategic Plan and with the needs of the region and the state. Our mission is to:

  • Support world-class research, innovation and commercialization at the University
  • Develop major existing and emerging research areas
  • Provide faculty, students and staff with the highest quality administrative services and a competitive infrastructure that will enable them to excel in their research, scholarly and artistic endeavors
  • Minimize burden on faculty
  • Foster ethical conduct in research and adhere to all regulatory requirements

The activities of Research & Innovation are driven by our core values: integrity, the pursuit of excellence, fairness, respect and collaboration.


We aim to provide our faculty with streamlined, organized and efficient access to all information and processes necessary to conduct research and facilitate innovation and entrepreneurship at the University. Please contact us if you need guidance and we will connect you with a person who will provide support.

Research & Innovation Leadership Team

Ahmad Itani

Ahmad Itani
Associate Vice President for Research

  • Research Development
  • Undergraduate Research
  • Core Laboratories
Charlene Hart

Charlene Hart
Associate Vice President for Research Administration

  • Animal Resources
  • Environmental Health & Safety
  • Research Integrity
  • Sponsored Projects
Ellen Purpus

Ellen Purpus
Assistant Vice President for Enterprise & Innovation

  • Enterprise & Commercialization
  • Innevation Center
  • Nevada Center for Applied Research
  • Nevada Industry Excellence

Division organizational structure

  • Mridul Gautam Vice President for Research and Innovation
    • Ahmad Itani Associate Vice President for Research
      • Scott Mensing Director, Undergraduate Research
      • Paul Hartley Core Facility Director, Nevada Genomics Center
      • David Quilici Core Facility Director, Mick Hitchcock, Ph.D. Nevada Proteomics Center
      • Yanji Xu Core Facility Director, Nevada Center for Bioinformatics
      • Rohit Patil Manager, University Research Data
      • Proposal Development
      • Whittell Forest and Wildlife Area
    • Charlene Hart Associate Vice President for Research Administration
      • Karim Hussein Director, Sponsored Projects
      • Holly Marizu Budget Analyst
      • Nancy Moody Director, Research Integrity
      • Benjamin Weigler Director, Animal Resources
      • Stephanie Woolf Director, Environmental Health & Safety
      • Effort Reporting and Export Control
    • Ellen Purpus Assistant Vice President, Enterprise and Innovation
      • Mark Anderson Director, Nevada Industry Excellence
      • Carlos Cardillo Director, Nevada Center for Applied Research
      • Grace Chou Director, University of Nevada, Reno Innevation Center—Powered By Switch
    • Jane Tors Director, Research Communications