With two new hires, the senior leadership team for The University of Alabama Office for Research and Economic Development is complete.
Dan Blakley joins the office as associate vice president for economic and business engagement while Jennifer Camp will be the assistant vice president for research and executive director for the Offices of Sponsored Programs and Contract and Grant Accounting.
“I am thrilled that Dan and Jennifer will be joining UA and the Office for Research and Economic Development,” said Dr. Russell J. Mumper, vice president for research and economic development. “Each brings considerable experience and knowledge to help move UA’s research mission forward and execute the Office’s strategic plan for research and economic development that emphasizes linking the teaching, research and economic development missions of UA.”
The new members of the leadership team fill out Mumper’s senior staff, which include Dr. John Higginbotham, senior associate vice president for Research and Economic Development and COO, and Lauren Wilson, assistant vice president for research and technology agreements.
Blakley and Camp come at an important time, since the Office for Research and Economic Development recently launched a five-year strategic plan that articulates UA’s vision for its research and economic development missions, Mumper said.
Blakley, who began Jan. 6, will oversee efforts for economic and business engagement including the GulfQuest operation in Mobile, EDGE Labs, UA Center for Economic Development and the business outreach centers, including the Alabama International Trade Center, Alabama Small Business Development Center and the Alabama Procurement Technical Assistance Center.
He will be instrumental in executing the five-year Economic Development Priorities and Strategic Goals that emphasizes increasing impactful activities that affect economic and societal development.
Blakley has also been involved in various entrepreneurial initiatives at UA. He helped establish The EDGE and served as an adviser and mentor for entrepreneurial teams participating in Crimson Startup, a National Science Foundation funded I-Corp program. He founded American Renewable Metals LLC, a Tuscaloosa-based technology company. He has also consulted with the Office for Research and Economic Development on a strategic plan for the new Office of Economic and Business Engagement.
He was previously city president for Regions Bank in Tuscaloosa from 2009 to 2018. His community involvement includes serving as chairperson of the Chamber of Commerce of West Alabama, president of the Black Warrior Council of the Boy Scouts of America, member of the Culverhouse College of Business Board of Visitors, member of the DCH Foundation Board and an ex-officio board member of the Tuscaloosa County Industrial Development Authority Board, among others.
Blakley earned a bachelor’s degree in chemistry from Southern Illinois University, and he served in the U.S. Army from 1996-2000, where he provided nuclear, biological and chemical support. He is also a graduate of the Alabama Leadership Institute.
In her role, Camp’s primary mission of the Offices of Sponsored Programs and Contract and Grant Accounting is to encourage research, instruction and public service through support of faculty and University personnel in the pursuit and administration of externally funded grants and contracts. These efforts will comply with requirements established by federal and state laws, sponsor rules and regulations, and University policies and procedures.
She begins her tenure at UA Feb. 17.
Camp has over 10 years of administrative experience at the executive and director level, and she is a Certified Research Administrator. She comes to UA from the Georgia Institute of Technology where she served as the director of the Office of Grants & Contracts Accounting for the last seven years, responsible for central post-award financial administration for academic and other business units.
Before joining Georgia Tech in 2013, Camp was with the Huron Consulting Group as a manager in research services where she served as the interim director of research operations for an academic medical center. From 2009-2012, she served as the director for the Office of Grants and Contracts with Torrey Pines Institute. Prior to that, she held positions with the Methodist Hospital Research Institute and Nemours Children’s Clinic.
Camp has nine years’ experience teaching and has led workshop discussions and given presentations on pre-award and post-award research administration, audit and federal regulations.
Camp earned her master’s and bachelor’s in Business Administration from the University of North Florida. She is a member of the Society of Research Administrators and previously a member of the National Council of University Research Administrators.
The University of Alabama, the state’s oldest and largest public institution of higher education, is a student-centered research university that draws the best and brightest to an academic community committed to providing a premier undergraduate and graduate education. UA is dedicated to achieving excellence in scholarship, collaboration and intellectual engagement; providing public outreach and service to the state of Alabama and the nation; and nurturing a campus environment that fosters collegiality, respect and inclusivity.