Mridul Gautam, Ph.D.

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.


The University of Nevada, Reno will be recognized as a leader in developing solutions to regional, national and global grand challenges through excellence in fundamental, applied and translational research, scholarship, creative works and innovation.


  • Enhance the status of the University as an internationally recognized, high impact research university.
  • Support world-class research, discovery, innovation and commercialization.
  • Provide high quality service and competitive infrastructure to enable faculty and students to excel in their research, scholarly and creative endeavors, and entrepreneurial activities.
  • Minimize the research administrative burden on faculty.
  • Provide a safe work environment, foster ethical conduct, and adhere to regulatory requirements.

Core values

  • Integrity
  • Pursuit of Excellence
  • Fairness, respect and inclusiveness
  • Collaboration

Please contact us if you need guidance and we will connect you with a person who will provide support.

Strategic objectives for 2020-2025

The University’s Research & Innovation division has target metrics, timelines and milestones in place to guide progress toward these strategic objectives.

  • Research leadership
    • Support world-class research and discovery by investing in institutional research strengths and emerging needs and opportunities.
    • Facilitate transdisciplinary integration of life sciences, physical sciences, engineering, agriculture, education, social sciences, humanities and creative arts research.
    • Maintain the University’s classification as an R1 institution with very high research activity by the Carnegie® Classification of Institutions of Higher Education, achieve placement of the University within the top 100 NSF R&D expenditures institutions and among the nation’s top 50 public research universities, and aspire to membership in the Association of American Universities.
    • Develop and strengthen University research centers and team science to reflect regional and national research directions and emerging opportunities to address societal needs.
    • Expand undergraduate research opportunities.
    • Expand and modernize core research facilities and support a sustainable research infrastructure with critical investments.
    • Create a culture that welcomes, values and safeguards equity, inclusion and respect for all.
    • Support University faculty, staff and student applications for national awards.
  • Research administration
    • Foster a service-oriented atmosphere and provide a competitive infrastructure to enable excellence in research, scholarship and creative endeavors and minimize administrative burden on faculty.
    • Implement state-of-the-art tools and technologies to support workflow and growth of research.
    • Streamline, optimize and communicate all research management and operational functions to faculty, heads and deans.
    • Foster research integrity and the ethical and responsible conduct of research, and promote community and public trust in the research enterprise.
    • Provide for a safe and healthy environment for faculty, staff, students and visitors. Promote campus and research safety, assisting faculty and facilities managers in complying with regulatory requirements.
    • Ensure compliance management and requirements to protect the rights and welfare of human research participants and animals in our care.
  • Enterprise and innovation
    • Pursue applied research and promote faculty intellectual property by building an innovation ecosystem.
    • Expand technology transfer and be a pillar of economic development through enterprise and commercialization.
    • Promote community-focused, university-county-state partnerships and support the growth of the University of Nevada, Reno Innevation Center, Nevada Center for Applied Research and Nevada Industry Excellence.
    • Establish and foster partnership with industry to enhance students’ access to and success in a world-class engaged university.
  • Communication and marketing
    • Strengthen the R&I communication infrastructure to ensure audience-focused, accessible, digitally-based and effective delivery of strategic information and stories.
    • Increase impact and awareness of the connection between R&I programs and economic engagement, including innovation, entrepreneurialism, commercialization and regional economic development activities.
    • Enhance national awareness and regional reputation of the University’s research and innovation impact.

Research & Innovation Leadership Team

Mridul Gautam

Mridul Gautam
Vice President for Research and Innovation

  • Research & Innovation
  • Nevada Center for Applied Research
  • Nevada Industry Excellence
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
Grace Chou

Grace Chou
Chief Innovation & Commercialization Officer

  • Enterprise & Commercialization
  • Innevation Center

Division organizational structure

  • Mridul Gautam Vice President for Research and Innovation
    • Ahmad Itani Associate Vice President for Research
      • Tanya Kelley Director, Undergraduate Research
      • Paul Hartley Core Facility Director, Nevada Genomics Center
      • Juli Petereit Core Facility Director, Nevada Center for Bioinformatics
      • David Quilici Core Facility Director, Mick Hitchcock, Ph.D. Nevada Proteomics Center
      • Proposal Development
      • University Research Data
      • Whittell Forest & Wildlife Area
    • Charlene Hart Associate Vice President for Research Administration
      • Thomas Landis Director, Sponsored Projects
      • Nancy Moody Director, Research Integrity
      • Benjamin Weigler Director, Animal Resources
      • Stephanie Woolf Director, Environmental Health & Safety
      • Effort Reporting and Export Control
    • Grace Chou Chief Innovation & Commercialization Officer
      • Enterprise & Commercialization
      • Innevation Center
    • Jane Tors Director, Research Communications
    • Chelsea Pierce Fiscal & HR Officer
    • Carlos Cardillo Director, Nevada Center for Applied Research
    • Tom Simpkins Interim Director, Nevada Industry Excellence