LEXINGTON, Ky. (July 22, 2021) — Two University of Kentucky Research staff were honored in the inaugural “Future of the Field” recognition program by the Society of Research Administrators (SRA) International. This program shines light on up-and-comers innovating and influencing the research administration profession.
Veronica Taylor and Baron Wolf were selected by a committee of research administrator peers, after the program received more than 100 nominations from around the globe. Applications were evaluated based on candidates’ career history, demonstration of exceptional professional growth and significant contributions made to the advancement of research administration.
“The individuals recognized through Future of the Field are the some of the best and brightest in our profession,” said Debra Schaller-Demers, president of SRA International. “These are the next generation trailblazers we know will drive research administration forward in the decades to come.”
“Both of these talented research staff have been instrumental to the growth in research we have experienced across the institution. We celebrate their success and agree with SRA International that they indeed represent the future of the field,” said UK Vice President for Research Lisa Cassis.
Taylor is a certified research administrator and an assistant director in the Office of Sponsored Projects Administration (OSPA), where she manages a complex and significant share of the pre-award and post-award administrative support for UK’s sponsored project awards. She serves as the subject matter expert for internal and external reporting for state cancer funding, federal construction projects and National Institutes of Health genomic dataset usage. She has served as the primary liaison between the University of Kentucky Research Foundation and the Commonwealth of Kentucky regarding state contracts awarded to UK. She has presented at the National Council of Research Administrators’ Pre-award Research Administration conference on strategies to create or revise policies and procedures.
Wolf is the assistant vice president for research, chief of staff and director of research analytics in the Office of the Vice President for Research. He has led efforts to create a comprehensive data analytics infrastructure within UK Research to assist with data-informed decision making. He is an adviser to UK’s vice president for research and helps support the data and strategic needs of research administration units across campus. Additionally, he serves on several national and international advisory boards focused on best practices in the use of benchmarking, data analytics and responsible research evaluation. He has also received extramural funding to complete his own research as principal investigator.
“Future of the Field” selectees will be formally recognized at SRA International’s Annual Meeting this October in New Orleans.
The Society of Research Administrators International is the premier global research management society providing education, professional development, and the latest comprehensive information about research management to professionals from over 40 countries.
The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers." We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.