Oregon State University named Ron Adams as interim vice president for Research, effective July 1, 2014.
Adams, former dean of the College of Engineering at OSU, has spent the past three years as executive associate vice president for research at Oregon State – a new position designed to boost the university’s partnerships with industry and spin out more companies based on Oregon State’s research discoveries.
He succeeded Rick Spinrad, who accepted a position as chief scientist for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration in Washington, D.C.
Adams leads the OSU Advantage program, which helps commercialize innovations, launch new companies, connect existing business with faculty expertise and student talent, and provide Oregon with the work-ready graduates needed for economic progress.
Prior to his appointment as executive associate vice president, Adams was the engineering dean for 13 years, leading the college through a period of remarkable growth. The College of Engineering doubled the size of its Ph.D. program, tripled its research funding and helped spin off more than a dozen companies.
Before returning to OSU as dean after a previous stint on the faculty, Adams worked at Tektronix for more than 14 years, including serving as vice president of technology and as a senior Tektronix fellow.
Adams earned his B.S. and Ph.D. degrees from OSU and his M.S. from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He served in the U.S. Air Force and worked at MIT Lincoln Labs before joining the OSU faculty as an assistant, and then associate professor of mechanical engineering. He took a leave from OSU to lead a team at Tektronix working on developing color printing technologies.
Headed by the vice president for research, the several units of the Research Office serve faculty involved in research, innovation, scholarship, and creativity in all OSU colleges and departments, and in a variety of multidisciplinary centers, institutes, and programs. The office provides support to secure funding, comply with regulations, partner with industry, establish collaborations across the university, and raise the profile of OSU.
The vice president for research oversees research and scholarship activities spanning OSU's 11 academic colleges and more than 20 multidisciplinary programs, centers and institutes.