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To be considered for this position, please email CV and cover letter to:


Carolyn (Moceri) Smith, MHSA, PMP

Senior Project Manager

Office of the Dean/EVPMA

University of Michigan Medical School

Job Summary

The University of Michigan Medical School seeks an internationally renowned physician scientist and visionary academic leader to serve as the Executive Director (ED) of the A. Alfred Taubman Medical Research Institute (TI). The ED has responsibility for the leadership and management of the work of the TI and reports to the Dean of the Medical School/Executive Vice President for Medical Affairs (EVPMA), who is one of three executive vice presidents of the University reporting to the President.

The TI has been in existence since 2007 and is in the process of completing an endowment of approximately $100M from the Taubman Family Foundation, which will serve to maintain the current level of activity more reliably. Since its inception, the TI has been focused on biomedical research led by physician-scientists, both established and in early phases of their career. This research has been conducted in the areas of clinical focus for the TI: oncology, cardiology, and neurology. A five-year strategic plan has been recently completed. Led by the Dean of the University of Michigan Medical School /Executive Vice President for Medical Affairs, senior leaders in the TI, and its external Scientific Advisory Board, this plan outlines broad-based approaches to increasing the impact of the TI on biomedical research-based improvements in health. The U-M Medical School seeks the right leader to achieve the TI’s new Mission stated in the plan:

“To empower medical scientists to expand the boundaries of medical discovery, to develop new treatments for disease and to alleviate human suffering.”

The right leader will build on the achievements of the TI to this point and use the new strategic plan as a starting point to lead the TI to an even higher and completely different level of performance and impact.


  • Shift the research portfolio of the TI from primarily single-investigator, single-discipline, single-institution biomedical research projects to a balanced project portfolio, which will also emphasize multi-investigator, multi-discipline, and multi-institution research, in a complementary relationship with single-investigator-focused projects. This high-impact research will range from early exploratory research to emerging translational candidates to mature research projects, which will attract investment in their translation into clinical practice.

  • Reinforce and expand the currently cultivated U-M community of physician-scientists. Extend the TI’s central role as a beacon, incubator, and platform for physician-scientists to include the wider community of scientists inside and outside U-M, which is required for the success of the TI’s portfolio of projects.

  • Position early-career physician-scientists to succeed as leaders of multi-investigator, multi-discipline, multi-institution biomedical research projects. Continue and expand the current Emerging Scholar program, which provides early-career support for junior U-M physician-scientists, and oversee intensified mentoring, training, and related programs for this group of significant future contributors.

  • Broaden and strengthen TI’s financial platform. Broaden the current sources of endowed and current funding beyond the Taubman Family to include venture capitalists, biotech firms, pharmaceutical companies, and foundations in support of TI research.

  • Assess, re-design, and establish the TI organizational capabilities, infrastructure, positions, and relationships inside and outside TI and U-M that are required to achieve the above.








Strategic Leadership - Lead TI in the achievement of its mission by:

  • Gathering, interpreting, synthesizing, and acting on the evolving landscape of disease, biomedical research and associated capabilities and players, and its implications

  • Maintaining alignment among key TI stakeholders around the evolving TI strategy and the research priorities and implications for action inherent in it; these stakeholders include the Scientific Advisory Board and the Governing Council of the TI

  • Providing leadership to the TI and the TI scholar community

  • Provide a compelling voice within U?M and the national and global biomedical research and public health community

Project Selection and Oversight - Optimize the portfolio of TI projects to achieve the mission by:

  • Identifying and selecting those research questions and potential projects that meet the criteria of, e.g., greatest societal need, emerging scientific and technological opportunities, match with greatest strengths of scholars and U-M, and are high risk/high reward

  • Sponsoring and overseeing TI projects in a way that maintains accountability against agreed milestones, clears U-M political obstacles, and provides the most supportive environment possible for each project

  • Guiding Emerging Scholar and other single-investigator-focused projects in a way that encourages their connection with larger multi-investigator projects and/or facilitates this by bringing groups of single-investigator-focused research projects together to increase the opportunity for novel, high-profile findings and implementation of these findings.

Program Management - Optimize the portfolio of TI programs to achieve its mission, specifically:

  • The Emerging Scholar program, to include scholar recruiting, Emerging Scholar-donor matching, and Emerging Scholar development

  • Scholar community enrichment and development

  • A continuously improving collection of other programs

Financial and Administrative Management - Partner with the Finance function of Michigan Medicine to provide:

  • Budgets and decision?relevant management information to TI, U-M and internal/external partners

  • IT infrastructure to support required databases of scholars, donors, industry and institutional partners, and U-M stakeholders

  • Administrative support to projects and programs

Donor Fundraising - Partner with the Office of Medical Development to secure funding for TI and its work by:

  • Creating and maintaining a matching database between research interests of physician-scientists and donors

  • Achieve deep understanding of the needs and wants of important donor segments, and apply this understanding to achieve short-and long-term fundraising goals

Partnering with Industry and Institutions - Partner with U-M Tech Transfer and MICHIGAN MEDICINE Office of Business Development to fund and provide needed resources to projects, and to commercialize IP by:

  • Creating and maintaining a matching database between research interests of physician-scientists and industry and institution partners

  • Achieving deep understanding of the needs, wants and programs of important industry and institution segments, and applying this understanding to support project teams in achieving the resource commitments needed

Leveraging U-M Resources - Achieve highest collective impact on the mission of TI, U-M, and MICHIGAN MEDICINE with U-M and MICHIGAN MEDICINE leaders, relevant department chairs, and leaders of colleges, schools, institutes, and core service leaders by:

  • Maintaining positive long-term collaborative relationships, particularly research collaborations

  • Helping to make project-specific agreements for funding, advantageous terms of service and/or services in kind

  • Establishing multi-disciplinary, cross-departmental collaborations, which will lead to even more effective and innovative use of U-M facilities and technologies

Marketing - Build the TI brand to attract and retain scholars, donor, and partners, whether inside or outside U-M by:

  • Defining the TI global brand and its major expressions and variations

  • Designing and operating the TI website, social media and other communications platforms

  • Designing and implementing communications with all external and U-M stakeholders that achieve short and long-term TI goals 

  • Building relationships with media, advocacy and support groups, professional organizations, and other potential partners


The TI Executive Director will report directly to the Dean of the Medical School/Executive Vice President for Medical Affairs.

The TI Executive Director will work collaboratively with the Scientific Advisory Board and other major internal stakeholders – including the Chief Scientific Officer, the Executive Vice Dean for Academic Affairs, the Executive Director for Administration for the Medical School, Medical School Department and Center Directors and leaders across the University of Michigan campus.


The TI Executive Director will engage in an assessment of the current TI organization, which is likely to result in a change in operating processes, responsibilities, or positions. Currently, administrative supervision is provided by the Executive Director for the following positions (positions are full-time unless otherwise indicated):

  • Managing Director

  • Deputy Managing Director

  • Communications Manager

  • Administrative Specialist (50%)

  • Aministrative Specialist

  • Administrative Assistant (50%)

In addition to these direct positions, note that the TI closely coordinates and makes use of Michigan Medicine staff and functions for both fund-raising and financial administration functions.


Required Qualifications*

  • An MD, with/without a PhD

  • Eligibility for the academic rank of Senior Associate Professor or Professor (preferred) with tenure within the Medical School

  • National and preferably international recognition as a scholar and academic

  • Proven visionary leader and change manager who has developed or transformed an innovative program in a cutting-edge area of biomedical research

  • Strong record of scientific accomplishment and administrative, managerial, and operational experience in oversight of research programs

  • Demonstrated ability to traverse the fields of academic medicine, corporate entities, venture capitalists, pharmaceutical/diagnostic/device companies, foundations, and public agencies while building collaborative relationships at both the strategic and operational level

  • Experience and enthusiasm for cultivating donor relations and stewardship

  • Successful and extensive experience with federal funding agencies and the regulatory compliance they require

  • Space and budget management experience, preferably in an academic medical center environment

  • Ability and desire to promote a culture that balances alignment with adaption, and rewards inquiry, collaboration, scholarship, and excellence

  • Strong interpersonal and communication skills and demonstrated ability to achieve high levels of influence across multidisciplinary stakeholders

  • Experience in planning, implementing and sustaining comprehensive research centers or programs

  • A track record of recruiting and leading a group to achieve the potential that its cultural diversity and inclusive character makes possible


Desired Qualifications*

The successful candidate is fundamentally of high integrity, has the intellectual and analytical skills that are a threshold requirement for excellent science, is collaborative at his/her core, and is positively differentiated from others as a leader and a manager – specifically by being able to create and sustain a climate among TI staff and stakeholders of:

Vision – where the future of TI and every person’s contribution is clear, inspiring, and evolving as the environment and strategy require

Urgency – where all are positively driven -- regardless of difficulty -- to achieve their potential, play for the team, and get the desired outcome

Empowerment – where all grow in competence, confidence, and authority through the right combination of mentorship, alignment around goals and freedom to act

Trust – in the leader and in the team – in their competence, reliability, and positive intent

Responsibility – where all take personal responsibility


Background Screening

Michigan Medicine conducts background screening and pre-employment drug testing on job candidates upon acceptance of a contingent job offer and may use a third party administrator to conduct background screenings.  Background screenings are performed in compliance with the Fair Credit Report Act.

U-M EEO/AA Statement

The University of Michigan is an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer.