Appointment: Associate Vice President (Research Integrity Support)

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I am very pleased to announce the appointment of Dr. Jason Acker as Associate Vice President (Research Integrity Support) for a three-year term beginning August 1, 2022. This is a new position in the Research and Innovation portfolio, and is part of the structure announced on December 2, 2021.

A graduate of the University of Alberta, Dr. Acker received his doctorate in 2000, then spent two years as a surgical research fellow at Harvard Medical School and Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston. He is currently a Professor in the Department of Laboratory Medicine and Pathology, where he has worked since 2002. He recently served as a member of the GFC Executive Committee, Chair of the GFC Executive Subcommittee on Governance and Procedural Oversight, Vice Chair of the GFC Academic Planning Committee, member of the Faculty of Medicine and Dentistry GFC and member of the University Research Policy Committee (URPC). As the GFC’s representative to the U of A Senate, Dr. Acker has served on the Senate Executive Committee, is co-chair of the Senate Communications Committee, and a member of the Honors Degree Selection Committee.

Dr. Acker and his team conduct applied development and translational research focused on three areas. The first is to study the response of cells and tissues to freezing and thawing, which has enabled advances in the preservation and storage of cellular therapeutics for clinical transfusion and transplantation. The second is to assess the manufacture, quality assessment and use of blood products in order to improve the safety and quality of blood products in Canada. The third area is the development of new diagnostic technologies that have commercial and clinical benefits for environmental monitoring, human and veterinary medicine, and food safety.

Dr. Acker has held a series of professional positions at Canadian Blood Services since 2002, and is currently a Senior Research Scientist in the Innovation and Portfolio Management group. Dr. Acker has extensive experience as postdoctoral fellows and supervising graduate students. In 2019, he received the Graduate Student Supervisor Award from the University’s Graduate Student Association and in 2020 the Level 1 Mentoring Excellence Award from the Faculty of Medicine and Dentistry. He served as Academic Director of the Office of Postdoctoral Fellows and Visiting Academicians from 2019 to 2022. Active in business development, he is a co-founder and director of PanTHERA CryoSolutions Inc. In 2019, Dr. Acker was named a Fellow of the Company. for cryobiology, only the fourth Canadian to be so honoured.

As Research Integrity Support (AVP), Dr. Acker will be responsible for developing, implementing and managing a framework that supports programs and services encompassing all areas of research integrity. research, including compliance, ethical certification, clinical trial oversight, human and animal ethics, research safeguards, and research-related legal requirements.

Please join me in welcoming Dr. Acker to his new role at the U of A.

Aminah Robinson Fayek
Vice President (Research and Innovation)

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