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ORAU Elects Four New Directors

April 14, 2005

OAK RIDGE, Tenn.—The Oak Ridge Associated Universities’ (ORAU) Board of Directors welcomed four new directors at the 60th annual meeting of the ORAU Council of Sponsoring Institutions held recently in Washington, D.C. The board provides policy and fiduciary oversight of ORAU operations for its membership.

Elected to the board were:

  • Robert McGrath, senior vice president for research, The Ohio State University.
  • Theodore Cicero, vice chancellor for research and associate vice chancellor/associate dean of the School of Medicine , Washington University .
  • Michael Cassidy, president and CEO, Georgia Research Alliance.
  • Homer Fisher, senior vice president emeritus and director Oak Ridge operations, University of Tennessee.

The four new directors bring tremendously varied expertise, ranging from university administration and economic development to engineering science and neurochemistry, to the ORAU Board of Directors.

Before joining OSU in 2004, McGrath served as professor and associate vice president for research at Pennsylvania State University . Prior to this he was a researcher and department manager at Sandia National Laboratories, where he served as the coordinator of ORAU’s Graduate Fellowships Program in Magnetic Confinement Fusion Research. He holds a doctorate in nuclear science and engineering from the University of Michigan and master’s degrees in physics and mathematics from Pennsylvania State University, as well as a bachelor's degree in engineering science.

"I’m proud to have been elected to the ORAU Board of Directors…. Membership on the Board provides opportunity to ensure that ORAU universities are educating the scientists needed for U.S. leadership in research and technology in the decades ahead," McGrath said.

Cicero joined the faculty of the WU School of Medicine in 1970 after serving as a postdoctoral fellow in the department of psychiatry for two years. He has held his position as vice chancellor for research since 1996 and the associate vice chancellor/associate dean position since 1991. Cicero earned a doctorate in neuropharmacology and a master’s degree in physiological psychology from Purdue University and holds a bachelor’s degree in psychology from Villanova University.

Cassidy has been with the Georgia Research Alliance since 1993 and has served as president since 2000. He holds a master’s degree in technology and science policy from the Georgia Institute of Technology and a bachelor of business administration in marketing from Georgia State University. From 1987 to 1993, he served in managerial positions at the Advanced Technology Development Center of Georgia Tech.

In 1977, Fisher began his career at UT as the vice chancellor for business and finance. He accepted the position of executive vice chancellor for business, planning and finance in 1985 and became senior vice president, system-wide operations in 1989 and has served as senior vice president emeritus and director of Oak Ridge operations since 1999. Fisher holds a master’s in business administration and a bachelor’s degree in economics from Auburn University.

"I am honored to join the ORAU Board. I have great respect for Ron Townsend, the ORAU staff and the fine member institutions. I have been associated with three member institutions during my 40 years of employment in higher education, and each of these universities benefited substantively from the ORAU membership," Fisher said.

ORAU provides innovative scientific and technical solutions to advance national priorities in science, education, security and health. Through specialized teams of experts, unique laboratory capabilities and access to a consortium of more than 100 major Ph.D.-granting institutions, ORAU works with federal, state, local and commercial customers to advance national priorities and serve the public interest. A 501(c)(3) nonprofit corporation and federal contractor, ORAU manages the Oak Ridge Institute for Science and Education (ORISE) for the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE).

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