Joan Bienvenue has been selected as the first executive director of the Oak Ridge Institute at the University of Tennessee.
“The institute was established last year to align the expertise and infrastructure of Oak Ridge National Laboratory and the university in support of world-leading research and talent development,” UT said in an announcement to students, faculty, and staff on Tuesday.
As director, Bienvenue will also serve as a vice provost. She will begin her new position on March 8.
She will develop a strategy for establishing new interdisciplinary graduate research in emerging fields, build programs using UT and ORNL’s capabilities, and lead recruitment of faculty, staff, and students, the announcement said.
Bienvenue will report to ORNL Director Thomas Zacharia, and she will be responsible for oversight of all operations and activities of the Oak Ridge Institute, the announcement said. She will report to the provost and the vice chancellor for research on academic and research matters unique to the university.
“Our leadership team looks forward to supporting her in this partnership as the world’s leading scientists at both our institutions work together to solve big problems and produce tomorrow’s scientists and engineers,” the UT announcement said.
Bienvenue is coming to the Oak Ridge Institute from the University of Virginia, where she has been senior executive director of the Applied Research Institute, which she launched and has led since June 2013.
In addition to her role at the University of Virginia, Bienvenue served almost five years as program manager and chief scientist of biometrics/health and life sciences for Lockheed Martin, with responsibility for program management, business development, research commercialization, and technical leadership.
She is a chemist by training, with a doctorate in chemistry from the University of Virginia, a master’s degree in forensic science from the University of New Haven in Connecticut, a bachelor’s degree in chemistry from Rivier University in New Hampshire, and a master’s in business administration from the University of Mary Washington in Virginia.
She is a member of the Board of Army Research and Development of the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine, and she is a fellow of the American Academy of Forensic Sciences.