University of Idaho
Associate Vice President for Research

The University seeks a collaborative and entrepreneurial Associate Vice President for Research to serve as a catalyst for the development and expansion of research activities, grow and strengthen capacity and productivity in interdisciplinary research, engage external stakeholders to expand research funding opportunities, assume a key role in enhancing the research infrastructure, and establish an atmosphere of partnership across the University to heighten research success.

Strong Leader ... Creative ... Strategic ... Innovative ... Team Player
Optimistic ... Good Listener ... Flexible ... Approachable ... Consensus Builder
Sense of Humor ... Integrity ... Transparent ... Self Motivated ... Caring

The Position

Reporting to the Vice President for Research and Economic Development (VPRED), the Associate Vice President for Research (AVPR) oversees and directs campus efforts to develop and strengthen capacity and productivity in interdisciplinary research, scholarship, and creative activity across all disciplines in support of the University’s efforts to become a Carnegie Classification R1 institution. The AVPR provides strategic leadership for the statewide research enterprise; and oversees and directs management authority and budget responsibility for direct reports, research and faculty development, economic development, and intellectual property and technology transfer functions.

Working collaboratively with other University leaders and units, the AVPR ensures all research activities are conducted with the highest degree of integrity; with consideration of the environment and the health and safety of the public, faculty, staff, and students; and with compliance to University policies and procedures and state and national standards and regulations. The AVPR participates in strategic planning and implementation, leverages and coordinates with UI campuses located statewide, and assists in the formulation of research directions and policies for the institution as a whole.

The AVPR represents research administration on a variety of groups and committees. Internally, extensive interactions are expected with faculty, college and department administrators, Research Council, Office of Undergraduate Research, and College of Graduate Studies in order to promote transdisciplinary scholarship and engaged outreach around the research enterprise. Externally, extensive interactions with industry, federal funding agencies, Center for Advanced Energy Studies, and Idaho National Laboratory are also expected. The AVPR will play a critical leadership role within the Office of Research and Economic Development (ORED), the University community, and nationally, particularly through partnering with other universities.


Position responsibilities:

1. With the VPRED, lead research strategic engagement and planning.


  • Serve as a catalyst for development and expansion of research activities and programs in keeping with the land-grant mission of the University.

  • Establish, direct, and assess the execution of the Strategic Research Plan that includes defined goals, strategic and tactical initiatives, performance measures, and recommendations for future activities.

  • Assume a key role in developing and enhancing the research infrastructure necessary to meet the needs of the University’s growing research enterprise.

  • Lead campus efforts to develop and strengthen capacity and productivity in transdisciplinary research, scholarship, and creative activity across all disciplines in support of the University’s efforts to become an R1 institution.

  • Establish an atmosphere of partnership with senior leadership, Deans, Center Directors, faculty, and staff to advance creative efforts and enhance research success.

  • Ensure research plans and activities of units reporting to the ORED are aligned with University priorities.

  • Engage external stakeholders and sponsors to expand research funding and opportunities.

2. Provide leadership and oversight of ORED units.

  • Serve as an advisor to the VPRED on research administration and operational activities.

  • Directly supervise and advise the Director of Research and Faculty Development, the Executive Director of the Office of Economic Development, and the Director of the Office of Technology Transfer.

  • Provide the VPRED with regular updates regarding ORED unit activities.

3. Hold delegated authorities and responsibilities.

  • Serve as the Deputy to the VPRED to ensure overall effectiveness of ORED.

  • Serve as the empowered representative of the VPRED and relationship manager to internal and external constituents, sponsors, partners, and stakeholders of the University’s research and economic development activities.

  • Serve in the stead of the VPRED in her/his absence (due to travel, vacation, medical leave or similar circumstances).

4. Serve as a key member of the VPRED senior leadership team.

  • Contribute to the senior leadership team, providing support to Directors and reinforcement of their roles.

  • Work with the VPRED and senior leadership team to develop creative and financially feasible strategies to maximize the efficacy of research facilities and equipment across the University.

  • Foster a culture that is both innovative in its support of research, scholarship, and creative activities and that respects and adheres to policies governing research integrity and ethics.

5. Represent the University community state-wide and nationally.

  • Participate in various on-campus activities and support ORED initiatives.

  • Attend seminars and educational workshops and establish personal networks.

  • Participate in relevant professional societies such as the Association of Public and Land-Grant Universities.

The Qualifications

Required Qualifications:

  • Doctorate in a relevant discipline.

  • Personal track record in research and demonstrated capacity for research leadership at a senior level.

  • Demonstrated progressive experience in leadership positions in academic or other research-related organizations; including the development and implementation of strategic plans and the management of budgets, personnel, and research and/or academic programs.

  • Experience with, and understanding of, federal and state policies and practices for funded research.

  • Demonstrated skill in communicating effectively, both orally and in writing, with individuals of diverse backgrounds and abilities.

  • Proven ability to establish and maintain effective working relationships within an organization, and with the various external partners of an organization.

  • A dynamic and entrepreneurial individual with a commitment to advancing the University research enterprise.

Preferred Qualifications:


  • Ph.D. in a research-intensive, relevant discipline.

  • Experience that includes public higher education administration, creation of a team environment, and supervision of professional staff.

  • Evidence of prior or current active extramurally supported research and scholarship program.

  • Knowledge and understanding for facilitating multifaceted research and scholarly discovery across the broad spectrum of scholarship found at a large diverse public research university.

  • Familiarity with University of Idaho Research environments, challenges, and future planning considerations.

  • Demonstrated success in facilitating interdisciplinary research, developing partnerships, and addressing the administrative support needs of the research community.

  • Experience working collaboratively with internal and external stakeholders and sponsors including the public, industry, and elected officials on long-term projects and initiatives.

  • Ability to lead and collaborate with faculty, graduate students, and administrators to advance a culture of research.

  • A proven record of successful leadership with a bold vision for research, innovation, and economic development in a university setting.

  • Experience in effective technology transfer, innovation, and translational research to stimulate a regional economy.

  • Established record of working with faculty, staff and state agencies in securing and managing grants and contracts.


The University

Founded in 1889, the University of Idaho is the state’s land-grant institution and its principal graduate education and research university, bringing insight and innovation to the state, the nation, and the world. The student population numbers more than 12,000, including first-generation college students and ethnically diverse scholars, at locations in Moscow, Boise, Coeur d'Alene, and Idaho Falls. As the only institution in the state to be classified by the prestigious Carnegie Foundation as “higher research activity,” University researchers expended over $109 million in expenditures last year.

Consistently recognized as one of the best public colleges in the United States by The Princeton Review, and a noted national leader in student-centered learning and interdisciplinary research that promotes public service, the University combines the strength of a large university with the intimacy of small learning communities and a focus on helping students succeed and become leaders. Over 2,500 faculty and staff support and guide 120 Bachelor's, 83 Master's, and 33 doctoral degree options in the colleges of Agricultural and Life Sciences; Art and Architecture; Business and Economics; Education, Health and Human Sciences; Engineering; Law; Letters, Arts, and Social Sciences; Natural Resources; and Science. Through an institution-wide commitment to diversity, multiculturalism, and community, the University of Idaho actively engages in recruiting and retaining a diverse workforce and student body.

The University is a dynamic and integral part of the fabric of Idaho, and, as such, plays a key role in the state’s economic development. With extension offices in 42 counties, the University is committed to enhancing the scientific, economic, social, legal, and cultural assets of the state and takes pride in a commitment to teaching, research, agriculture, outreach, extension, and collaboration. The University provides access to publicly supported medical education through a multi-state partnership with University of Washington’s School of Medicine, and the UI College of Law is among the nation’s best small state public law schools. Unique academic partnership opportunities are also afforded with other universities and colleges in Idaho, as well as Washington State University, located only 8 miles away in Pullman, Washington.

The residential campus located in Moscow is a place of transformation and lasting traditions. With more than 200 student groups and a vibrant culture, the University is home to the renowned Lionel Hampton International Jazz Festival, for which UI became the first public university to receive the National Medal of Arts, the nation’s highest arts honor. Vandal athletic teams compete in 14 men's and women's NCAA Division I sports. Competing in the Big Sky Conference, the Vandals are reigning conference champions in women’s basketball, women’s golf, men’s golf, women’s soccer, and women’s tennis.
For additional information about the University of Idaho, please view the website links below: 


Office of Research and Economic Development 


Strategic Plan 2016-2025

The Location

Just minutes away from the forests, rivers, lakes, and mountains of northern Idaho, Moscow is home to approximately 25,000 residents and the urban amenities of the Coeur d’Alene-Spokane metropolitan area are within a 100-mile drive. In addition to art galleries, movie theaters, and coffee shops, Moscow offers a large organic and natural foods co-op, Northwest-style pubs, and many locally-owned restaurants.

Moscow is known as the “heart of the arts” for its consistent ranking among the top small arts towns in America.  The Lionel Hampton Jazz Festival brings some of the world’s best jazz artists, along with 20,000 visitors each year. The ARTWALK, Rendezvous in the Park concert series, and the Prichard Art Gallery are a few examples of its dedication to the arts. The downtown Farmer’s Market which runs late spring to early fall is one of the nation’s longest running and thriving outdoor markets.  In 2016 Moscow was named one of the top 50 ‘Best College Towns in America’ by College Rank for its access to outdoor recreation, vibrant downtown, and cultural attractions.

Moscow is surrounded by the rolling Palouse hills, an area so picturesque it was featured in National Geographic magazine. Reflective of these surroundings, the University ranked in the top 30 in the nation as a “great university to hit the books and backcountry” by Outside magazine. Living and learning in Moscow is just minutes from opportunities for hiking, fishing, biking, climbing, skiing, snowboarding, whitewater rafting, camping, and more.

The Invitation

Application, confidential conversation, or nomination.


To apply, please submit a complete curriculum vitae and a letter of application. The letter should summarize your professional qualifications and the accomplishments that reflect the skills, background, and experience to be successful in this key position. Successful applicants will provide specific examples of past work experience as it relates to the position responsibilities and qualifications listed above. Send your application materials to me at the email address below. The deadline for receipt of applications is Thursday, April 19, 2018. First consideration will be given to those who apply by this date. The position will remain open until filled.

To arrange a day and time for a 
confidential conversation, please contact me at the email address below.

If a colleague comes to mind you feel might have an interest, I would welcome your 
nomination. Please forward your nomination to me at the email address below or contact me by phone.


Thank you for your consideration,

Gary R. Rhoads
Search Consultant


Or, if you prefer, use the form below.

For a PDF copy of this Position Profile webpage, click here.

The University of Idaho is an equal opportunity employer and does not discriminate against any employee or applicant for employment because of race, color, religion, national origin, age, disability, sexual orientation, gender identity/expression or any other reason prohibited under Federal, State, or local laws. EOE AA/M/

Strategic Search Advantage: The search firm alternative for higher education.
Copyright © 2020 by Strategic Search Advantage. All rights reserved.