2019 Board Candidate Profiles

Available Positions

NORDP members will vote to fill two Board of Directors positions during the 2019 election, which will be held online from April 29 to May 31. New Board members are elected for four-year terms.

Three Board of Director positions become available in 2019, representing members whose Board terms are ending. Two of these seats are open to eligible NORDP members from any type of institution or region, and one seat is designated for an eligible NORDP member affiliated with a either a minority-serving institution and/or a regional institution.

Because no NORDP member eligible to fill the designated seat applied for a Board position, the position designated for a representative from a minority-serving institution and/or a regional institution will remain vacant, and two Board seats will be filled during the 2019 election.

Below is information submitted by the 2019 Board candidates. Candidates were required to submit a candidate statement, biography, and abbreviated resume or CV. For the first time, the 2019 candidates also were given the opportunity to prepare a brief audio recording to accompany their written materials. Links to these recordings are available for the candidates who chose to prepare them.


JoJoanna Downeranna Downer: Associate Dean for Research Development, Office of the Dean, Duke University School of Medicine

Biography | Resume

Candidate Statement: I am a candidate for the NORDP Board of Directors in order to give back to both the profession and the professional organization where I found my perfect fit. I quickly realized that Research Development (RD) uses all the traits I honed in school and work while introducing me to new areas, such as project management and the science of team science.  I am still always learning, always improving, and I would bring that mindset to the Board.

I also love helping people be the best “them” they can be – I get to do that every day in RD, and as a co-chair on the NORDP Professional Development Committee I get to help create opportunities for others to grow and lead. As a Board member, I would continue this through bi-directional learning and reinforcing NORDP’s open, collegial atmosphere. This collegiality is crucial because lessons can be learned from every NORDP member. Indeed, the conference panels I’ve organized have demonstrated that the details of our RD efforts or our institutions don’t dictate where relevant wisdom can be found – to paraphrase Maya Angelou, it is clear that “we are more alike than unalike”! And so I’m committed to capturing our shared wisdom so it is both easily accessible and useful, and as a Board member would advocate for expansion of NORDP professional development resources.

I also am intensely interested in developing effective ways to build a pipeline of talented RD professionals. In my own office, we have carefully defined what we do and how and why we do it and have begun to redesign our work to enhance sustainability, satisfaction, and effectiveness. With the support of the inaugural New Opportunities in Research Development award from InfoReady and NORDP, we will report on these efforts in the management literature. My efforts in NORDP to date also focus on creating and providing RD training opportunities, including my work with the NORDP Professional Development Committee’s webinars and on the NORDP Strategic Alliances Committee’s Training Working Group as we develop a framework for creating RD internship programs. Through Board service, I would advocate for expanding on such efforts.

As NORDP enters its second decade, answering questions such as how the organization could or should improve will be crucial. I would be thrilled to contribute to the fact-finding and discussions that would answer these questions and ultimately position both NORDP and its members for lasting success.

Faye FarmerFaye Farmer: Executive Director, Research Development, Arizona State University

BiographyResumeAudio Recording

Candidate Statement: I understand organizational change during times of intense growth. Arizona State University has doubled its number of students and tripled its research expenditures over the past 15 years. Similarly, NORDP has enjoyed relatively quick growth owning to an amazing vision outlined by a dedicated core group of individuals just over 10 years ago. As your board member, my professional experience will enable smart growth that aligns with the NORDP mission.

I believe every perspective should be valued. I embrace our incredible diversity of institutions and experience and our community members’ perspectives and priorities. I am committed to ensuring NORDP remains a safe space to share our experiences, to grow our collective expertise, and to diversify our knowledge base. As a board member, I will seek creative ways to build on existing programming so that it is more inclusive of our career paths. 

I believe Research Development is a well-defined profession with many facets. NORDP members have arrived here along very different professional paths. However, they all have a shared goal: to enable academic research. I am committed to celebrating the many paths that bring us together and connect the study of what we do with how we do it. As a board member, I will create a scalable, adaptable model of Research Development that would further justify establishing and growing research development efforts across our organizations.

As a NORDP member since 2011, I’ve watched NORDP mature into an international organization. Like you, I remember the people I meet at the conferences, the interesting webinars, and the celebratory emails for one another’s success. My volunteer experience with NORDP as mentor and mentee and volunteering on the conference workshop committee has been overwhelmingly beneficial to me. As a PEERD consultant, I am dedicated to supporting Research Development efforts at other institutions.

I see a NORDP that is attractive and welcoming to entry level professionals who stay for the course of their career. I see an organization that allows our members to grow their passion, leverage their place, and do some good in the world. I see an organization that pays homage to the vision that brought it into reality by evolving into a more mature definition of itself.

If elected to the NORDP board, I am committed to bringing my passion and talents to this organization. It would be my privilege to serve as your board member.

Katie HowardKatie Howard: Associate Director for Grants, Resources & Services, Office of Research, Appalachian State University

Biography | ResumeAudio Recording

Candidate Statement:  I’ve been a Research Development professional for four years, a NORDP member since 2017, and now I’m honored to run for a position on the NORDP board. I have collaborative leadership experience and a passion for NORDP’s mission to foster excellence in the profession. In 2015, I started as the Assistant Director of Grants Resources & Services (GRS) at Appalachian State University’s Office of Research. In January of 2019, I was promoted to Associate Director, as a testament to my continued professional growth and commitment to the Research Development profession. I've always considered myself a hard worker, but I know it was the expertise of others that ultimately helped propel me to the higher professional ground on which I stand today. Just as my peers gave back to me, I am eager to return the favor. 

As a strategic problem solver, I routinely seek out new ways to lead and develop myself and peers alike. Serving on the NORDP Board would be an ideal opportunity to continue my development as a leader, while also allowing me to lend my unique perspective derived from working at a PUI. In my day-to-day role, I function as an independent expert on several research development areas, including internal competitions and internal peer review. I’m also a positive and passionate collaborator as a colleague in a team environment.  

While we’re already a national leader, I’d like to see NORDP grow into an international leader in RD dialogues. To move in this direction, it’s critical that we continue to value participation and input from a variety of institutions including regional ones like Appalachian State as well as HBCUs and MSIs. Having a diverse and inclusive organization will empower us to be strong contributors in international Research Development dialogue. Collaborating internationally is a key component to many of our faculty colleagues’ research, and we need to be prepared to support them in those efforts. 

If elected to this board, I would be privileged to serve alongside my colleague, Karen Fletcher, the Director of GRS at Appalachian State. It is worth noting that in our daily work, we function independently as experts in our respective areas, but also work together by challenging one another and peers alike to grow and stretch established goals. I’d bring my own expertise, and anticipate collaborating with all board colleagues to underscore our collective and complementary strengths.

Jenna McGuire Jenna MGuire: Associate Director,  Translational Data Analytics Institute, The Ohio State University

Biography| Resume 

Candidate Statement: I would be honored to serve on the NORDP Board, where I hope to help as much as possible in moving NORDP forward. I would ultimately love to see a much broader engagement among our members, and leveraging my expertise in data analytics to ensure that we are making better decisions about our programming using robust data collection. Working at an R1 University for nearly 10 years, I think I bring a unique perspective of understanding the research challenges at all levels of a large university – from the President's Office to a start-up institute. I have a good grasp on what resources universities may / may not have available to leverage and how we might build partnerships / alliances among NORDP members to find and create additional support / resources. I am ready to serve NORDP at a higher level as I have loved my service to date. I have spent the past 3 years as volunteer chair of the conference committee, planned a regional NORDP meeting with Board member Jeff Agnoli, and working with current and past Board members on special projects. My most recent special project has been working with an Ohio State student to develop an algorithm to assist the Mentoring Committee with a more robust matching system for NORDP mentors and mentees. At Ohio State, I have been asked to serve in several advisory and planning boards encompassing student events, postdoctoral development, and research communication strategies – so I am well versed of the time and energy needed to serve on important boards like NORDP.