Vice President for Research and Innovation

The Division of Research and Innovation supports the generation and dissemination of knowledge by assisting faculty and students in their research, scholarly work and creative activities.

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Our Mission

The mission of the Division of Research and Innovation is to support, facilitate, and empower the growth of sustainable research at UNT. This mission is achieved by facilitating an interdisciplinary approach to research — a catalyst for discovery and innovation — that has cemented UNT's status as a Tier One research university. 

Message from VP Mark McLellan

Dear UNT faculty and staff,

In the short time that I have been at UNT, I’ve been impressed by our dedicated researchers and the variety of work happening across campus, and I am so proud to have joined UNT’s growing research program. I am excited to see the heights we will reach together...

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    The Division of Research and Innovation is dedicated to advancing the research enterprise at UNT, which is a Carnegie-ranked Tier One research university following the focus of R1 Our Way. To better support your research success, I have reorganized our division and implemented several new initiatives to create efficiencies and more effectively help you find solutions and expand UNT’s research impact on the world around us.

    Grants and Contracts Administration (GCA) under Chuck Tarantino, assistant vice president, will continue to receive all proposals for funding but will coordinate with Research Contracting and Agreements (RCA), a new unit that will review contract language and handle negotiations as well as licensing for all research-related activities at UNT. This new operational team, under the leadership of Michael Rondelli, associate vice president, includes Steve Tudor, assistant director of licensing; Janis Miller, grants and contracts administrator, and Amanda Anaya, administrative coordinator. It’s the first time our university truly will have a fully funded and staffed team to move proposals forward for our faculty and for UNT.

    I also have named Pamela Padilla as associate vice president for research and innovation and tasked her with assisting me in leading this division with special emphasis on new initiatives related to faculty research development. She kicked off a major new grantsmanship training program in December of 2019 with a workshop led by Peg AtKisson, a well-funded, successful researcher and an amazing instructor. We brought Peg's team back in February of 2020 and again in December of 2020, with more to follow annually, so that we are training faculty to write grant proposals that can withstand the stringent review processes.

    Pam also is leading our new Washington D.C. Faculty Fellows Program, which will take 20 recently hired faculty, selected by deans across campus, to Washington, D.C. to visit program managers at agencies that make the decisions about funding. I have had great success in implementing similar programs at other institutions, and after our first 2020 cohort's feedback and success stories, I know this will continue to be a big win here at UNT.

    Additionally, we partnered with interested colleges to jointly fund new positions for an in-college grant manager/editor, who teamed up to help faculty submit larger, interdisciplinary grant proposals – the type that are getting the attention of funding agencies more and more. This program will further assist our researchers in achieving success across different areas.

    These initiatives are all part of a focused strategy to advance UNT’s research standing and really open up faculty to the external funding dollars they deserve. Every faculty member at UNT, no matter what their discipline – from pottery to pulsars-should have a shot at attracting an infusion of external funding into their program. I am passionate about this need for faculty resources to help their dreams come alive and I am determined to help faculty win the funding game. It is an exciting time to be at UNT.


    Mark McLellan

    Mark McLellan

    Vice President of Research and Innovation

Strategic Plan & Roadmap 

Dr. Mark McLellan, Vice President for Research and Innovation and a 31-year leader of university research programs at five major institutions, is dedicated to growing UNT's research enterprise to cement its place among the nation’s top Tier One research universities.

With the arrival of Mark McLellan, new initiatives and the development of an updated and comprehensive research strategic plan has set UNT on the trajectory to advance its goal of becoming a recognized National Research University. Our goal is to provide a supportive, efficient, and more effective research strategy that facilitates and enlarges UNT's research impact. Core to the research strategy is to create an environment that makes it easier for faculty to pursue research and help them achieve higher success in obtaining research funding.

We look forward to communicating the Roadmap to Research and 2021-2026 Research Strategic Plan. 

View UNT's Research Roadmap

Leadership Team