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Bienvenue Named Director of Oak Ridge Institute

Dear students, faculty, and staff,

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. As director, Bienvenue will also serve as a vice provost. She begins her new position March 8.

Joan BienvenueDr. Bienvenue comes 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. As ORI director, she will develop a strategy for establishing leading-edge interdisciplinary graduate research in emerging fields, build world-leading programs that leverage UT and ORNL’s capabilities, and lead recruitment of faculty, staff, and students.

In addition to her role at UVA, Dr. 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 PhD in chemistry from UVA, a master’s in forensic science from the University of New Haven in Connecticut, a bachelor’s in chemistry from Rivier University in New Hampshire, and an MBA 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.

Dr. Bienvenue will report to ORNL Director Thomas Zacharia and is responsible for oversight of all ORI operations and activities. She will report to the provost and the vice chancellor for research on academic and research matters unique to the university.

As Chancellor Plowman previously stated, our outstanding faculty, researchers, and graduate students are at the heart of the Oak Ridge Institute, and they will no doubt thrive under Dr. Bienvenue’s leadership.

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.

John Zomchick
Provost and Senior Vice Chancellor

Deb Crawford
Vice Chancellor for Research