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Kent State Names New Vice President for Research

Posted Mar. 1, 2011

Kent State University has named Dr. W. Grant McGimpsey as its new vice president for research. McGimpsey comes to Kent State from Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) in Worcester, Mass., where he serves as director of the WPI Bioengineering Institute, professor of chemistry and biochemistry, and professor of biomedical engineering. He joins Kent State on Aug. 1, 2011. Dr. Sonia Alemagno, who has held the position of interim vice president for research since July 1, 2010, will return to her role as associate dean of Kent State’s College of Public Health.

Photo of W. Grant McGimpseyUnder the direction of the vice president for research, Kent State’s Division of Research and Sponsored Programs helps faculty and staff secure external funding to support their research and instructional and public service projects. McGimpsey will oversee the university’s Office of Technology Transfer and Economic Development and Office of Research Safety and Compliance.

“We are delighted that Dr. McGimpsey is coming to Kent State,” said Robert G. Frank, Kent State’s provost and senior vice president for academic affairs. “His ideas and energy assure us he’ll expand the university’s breakthrough research and creative endeavors, helping to enhance economic development and quality of life locally, regionally and statewide derived from research at Kent State.”

McGimpsey has been with WPI since 1989, holding such positions as professor and associate provost for research (ad interim). He has been director of the WPI Bioengineering Institute since 2005, where he established the institute’s mission and strategy and leads the business and economic development, research and outreach efforts of the institute. During his time at WPI, he received the WPI Trustees Award for Outstanding Research and Creative Scholarship, co-founded Active Surface Technologies Incorporated and raised more than $12 million in research funding from government, foundation and corporate sources. Since 2004, he also has served as an adjunct research professor at the University of Massachusetts Amherst (UMASS) Medical School.

His research interests include surface chemistry, particularly as it applies to biology and biomedical engineering, photovoltaics, implantable prosthetics, and nanoscience. He holds five issued patents and has authored or co-authored 80 journal articles.

A native of Canada, McGimpsey earned both a Bachelor of Science and Master of Science in chemistry from Brock University in St. Catharines, Ontario. He received his doctorate in physical chemistry from Queen’s University in Kingston, Ontario. He will move to Ohio with his wife and two sons.

For more information about research at Kent State, visit

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Media Contact:
Emily Vincent,, 330-672-8595