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New Dean for College of Life Sciences and Agriculture

By Beth Potier, Media Relations
February 14, 2007

Thomas Brady, division director at the National Science Foundation and a professor of biology at the University of Texas at El Paso (UTEP), has been selected as dean of UNH’s College of Life Sciences and Agriculture (COLSA). He will begin as dean July 1 and, like other UNH deans, will serve a five-year, renewable appointment.

“I am thrilled that Tom Brady has accepted our offer to lead COLSA into its next stage of development,” said Provost Bruce Mallory. “Dr. Brady brings outstanding experience and qualifications to the position of dean, based on his highly successful leadership roles in the National Science Foundation and the University of Texas. He will have my full support to implement the college’s strategic plan and to direct the reorganization process that will soon be presented to the Board of Trustees. The search committee developed an exceptional pool of outstanding candidates; it was obvious to me that Dr. Brady was the cream of the crop.”

As division director of Integrative Organismal Biology for the National Science Foundation (NSF) since 2004, Brady has been responsible for establishing and implementing scientific and outreach priorities for the division, which funds awards in neuroscience, developmental biology, behavioral biology, plant and animal physiology, plant-biotic interactions and physiological ecology. With a budget of just over $100 million, the division reviews approximately 1,500 proposals and awards 250 new grants per year.

“This is a spectacular opportunity. I believe that COLSA can be a jewel in the university’s crown and a leading college of life science and agriculture in the nation,” said Brady. “COLSA has developed a very forward-looking strategic plan with a visionary outlook of where the college should go. I think that integrating agriculture across the college, as the plan recommends, is right on the mark.”

Prior to accepting the visiting appointment to NSF, Brady was dean of the College of Science at the University of Texas at El Paso from 1997 – 2004. During his tenure, the college doubled its research grants portfolio and established a series of new undergraduate and graduate degrees, all interdisciplinary.

From 1997–2000, Brady was also director of UTEP’s Indio Mountains Research Station, responsible for increasing utilization of a 35,000-acre pristine Chihuahan Desert research station. Brady is a developmental biologist whose research has concerned understanding genes that regulate early embryonic development, working in plants and fruit flies.

Brady held earlier appointments at NSF, serving as director for several divisions, including the Division of Environmental Biology and Division of Integrative Biology and Neuroscience between 1990 and 1997. From 1984 – 1992, he was Stone Professor of Biology at Hamilton College in Clinton, N.Y., where he also served as chair of the Department of Biological Sciences. He is a native New Englander, born in Springfield, Mass., with family in the Boston area.

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