CORVALLIS, Ore. – Cynthia Sagers, the associate vice provost for research and economic development at the University of Arkansas, has been named vice president for research at Oregon State University.
Sagers succeeds Richard Spinrad, who resigned last summer to take a position as chief science officer with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. Ron Adams has since served as interim vice president.
As vice president, Sagers will provide leadership to OSU’s vast research enterprise, which last year brought in $285 million in research grants and contracts in areas including agriculture, forestry, marine sciences, public health, and engineering. Sagers also will work with academic leaders and the university community to expand OSU’s entrepreneurial and economic development activities with industry and other public and private partners.
“Cynthia Sagers is a dynamic leader who understands the needs of a comprehensive international research university,” said OSU President Edward J. Ray. “Her experience as a program officer for the National Science Foundation in international science and engineering will be an important asset as we grow OSU’s research impact in Oregon – and globally.”
“She is also a collaborator who can build upon this university’s strong foundation of partnerships with state and federal agencies, as well as the business sector,” Ray added. “We share a common goal of expanding OSU’s research impact in Oregon, nationally and internationally.”
A biological scientist by training, Sagers earned two bachelor’s degrees from the University of Iowa, and a Ph.D. from the University of Utah. She launched her academic career in 1994, joining the faculty of the University of Arkansas, where she has remained except for leaves of absence to work on leadership initiatives.
Beginning in 2005, Sagers worked in Corvallis, Ore., for two years as senior research associate with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s National Research Council. In 2007, when she returned to Arkansas, she served as state commissioner for the governor’s Global Warming Commission and in 2010, she was named program officer for the National Science Foundation’s Office of International Science and Engineering.
She also has been a Fulbright Fellow in Panama and a visiting faculty member in Costa Rica; and she chaired the board of directors for the Organization for Tropical Studies. Sagers is a well-published scholar in the area of evolutionary ecology.
In 2012, Sagers was named associate vice provost for research and economic development at the University of Arkansas. In just two years, she helped the university increase research awards by 30 percent.