Contact: Frank Griffis or Amy Halbert
COLLEGE STATION – Dr. Brett P. Giroir, M.D., has been appointed vice chancellor of research of The Texas A&M University System. His selection was announced Wednesday by Dr. Michael D. McKinney, chancellor, following approval by the Board of Regents during a telephonic board meeting.
Dr. Giroir, a physician-scientist trained at UT-Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas and most recently director of the Defense Sciences Office of the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) in Arlington, Va., will provide leadership for strategic development and research efforts throughout the Texas A&M System. The system’s world-renowned emphasis on innovation and discovery leads to almost $627 million in annual research expenditures, with funding from the state and federal governments, industry, foundations and individual donors.
Beginning as vice chancellor on June 23, Dr. Giroir also will guide administration at the system level, enhance communication and implementation of research efforts, and oversee the system’s interaction with the Texas A&M Research Foundation. He will lead initiatives to develop partnerships with external entitities to increase system research, teaching service and outreach functions, and will coordinate plans to expand sources of externally funded research.
“Research plays an integral role within the entire Texas A&M System as well as in the entire state of Texas. Dr. Giroir brings all the qualities of vision and leadership necessary to keep us growing in the right direction,” said Dr. McKinney. “We are proud to have him join the A&M System in our quest for excellence.”
A Louisiana native with a lifetime’s record of excellence and challenge, Dr. Giroir’s accomplishments have included being a National Merit Scholar, Harvard Scholar, a triathlete and an adviser to numerous federal agencies including the Department of Defense and NASA. He has received several competitive grants for research support and is a leading developer of new treatments for infectious meningitis in children. He has secured five medical patents, with two additional patents pending.
As the director of the Defense Sciences Office at DARPA, Dr. Giroir directed a research portfolio of approximately $450 million annually that spanned from fundamental physics to human biology. He led the establishment of a comprehensive biology/biomedical program that enabled breakthroughs including neural-controlled prosthetics and natural approaches to improve immune resistance to diseases. He has presented numerous briefings to Congress, Homeland Security and the Department of Health and Human Services in the course of his work. Before moving into government positions, Dr. Giroir was active in the medical community in Dallas, serving as a tenured professor and associate dean for clinical affairs at the UT-Southwestern Medical Center and chief medical officer at Children’s Medical Center.
Dr. Giroir also serves as a member of the federal Threat Reduction Advisory Committee and the Department of Defense Chief Scientist Panel for BioDefense. He also has previously served as a member of the External Advisory Board for the NASA National Center for Space Biological Technologies. Dr. Giroir is married to Jill S. Giroir and has two children.
About the A&M System
The A&M System is one of the largest systems of higher education in the nation, with a budget of $2.9 billion. Through a statewide network of nine universities, seven state agencies and a comprehensive health science center, the A&M System educates more than 106,000 students and makes more than 15 million additional educational contacts through service and outreach programs each year. Externally funded research brings in almost $627 million every year and helps drive the state’s economy.