Minutes - Mar 20, 2012

Date of Meeting: 

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

12:30pm – 201 Gilmore Hall

Council Members present:

 Jordan Cohen, Carolyn Colvin, John Doershuk, Edward Gillan, Carin Green, Robert Kirby, Kevin Kopelson, Cheryl Reardon, John Rosazza, Neil Segal and Alberto Segre


Charles Connerly, Rich Hichwa, Peter Matthes, Ann Ricketts and David Wiemer

Agenda Item 1: Approval of minutes from February 28th meeting

Carolyn Colvin made a motion to accept the minutes from the February 28th meeting, Bob Kirby seconded the motion.  The minutes were approved.

Agenda Item 2: Representatives of Research Council invited to meet with CLAS Dean Candidates

Meeting with CLAS Dean Candidate #1
Thursday, March 29
11:30 – Noon

Meeting with CLAS Dean Candidate #2
Monday, April 9
8:30 – 9:00 a.m.

There are four Research Council representatives for the meeting with Candidate #1.  Any Council members available for the meeting with Candidate #2 are to email Alberto.

Agenda Item 3: Economic Development Roundtable

Guests Charles Connerly, Professor and Director of the School of Urban and Regional Planning, David Wiemer, F. Wendell Miller Professor of Chemistry and Co-founder of Terpenoid Therapeutics, and Peter Matthes, Director of Federal Relations in the Office of Government Relations each spoke about their involvement in economic development.

Charles Connerly

Charles Connerly gave a brief explanation of his Iowa Initiative for Sustainable Communities – research and economic development.  Their focus is promoting economic development by promoting sustainability and applying research to sustainable development:

  • In some cases their research leads to information that benefits the economic development of the local community of the research, or benefits the local community of the research and extends to other communities.
    • Market study of likely users of Charles City Whitewater Park – has application to other communities considering use of waterways for recreation.
  • In some cases their research assists with economic development but also generates knowledge that contributes in general to research literature.
    • Renewable energy asset mapping in Dubuque – to create resilience to better endure and survive such shock as sudden rises in energy costs, economic recession and other phenomena related to increasingly global and interdependent communities and businesses.  Project involves enhancing sustainable transportation through the use of data obtained from smartphones and RFID devices.

The challenge is to spread the research and benefits so as not to leave any part of the state behind.

David Wiemer

David Wiemer gave a brief explanation of his company, Terpenoid Therapeutics Incorporated, which was formed in September 2005 with co-founder Raymond Hohl, M.D., Ph.D.  The focus of Terpenoid Therapeutics is discovery and development of medicinal compounds.  They have already discovered and patented a family of compounds for the treatment of breast and prostate cancers and a second family of compounds for the treatment of brain cancers.  Their goal is to develop compounds that will advance through the four phases of clinic trials and be approved for market.  They currently have 8 employees and are funded, approximately 50/50, from private investors and NIH grant awards.  Their success and growth will provide jobs in Iowa for Iowan’s.  Terpenoid Therapeutics has been nominated for a Life Sciences Company of the Year Award at the 2012 Prometheus Awards, April 11th.

Peter Matthes

Peter Matthes gave a brief explanation of his economic development efforts in the Office of Government Relations.  He said that along with technology transfer there needs to be knowledge transfer.  The University produces the human infrastructure that moves the state forward by developing the physicians, dentists, business leaders and other professionals necessary in any community to provide the lifestyle to sustain the community and attract people to that community.  Graduates from The University of Iowa Carver College of Medicine, Tippie College of Business, the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, etc., are more likely to practice, establish businesses and work in Iowa, whereas it is difficult to recruit professionals that graduate from universities on the East or West Coast to practice in small communities in Iowa.  Tysen Kendig, Steve Pradarelli and Peter are focused on messaging – to effectively communicate the benefits the University provides to Iowa and Iowans– through vehicles such as the IowaNow broadcasts and website, the Hawkeye Caucus [to network with legislators], and other non-mainstream media.

Why should the Research Council care about economic development?  Along with all of the above, economic development helps retain and attract desirable faculty.

The meeting adjourned at 1:40 p.m.