Seidel to lead university’s innovation economic development

H. Edward Seidel

H. Edward Seidel

H. Edward Seidel was named vice president for economic development and innovation for the University of Illinois System.

Seidel has served since August as interim vice president for research, a position that has been restructured and retitled to reflect the U of I System’s focus on fostering innovation to help drive the state’s economy through research and discovery.

University President Tim Killeen said Seidel’s leadership over the last eight months has helped advance several new initiatives, such as working with executives of Illinois companies to develop collaborative research projects that will serve their businesses and lift the state’s economy.

“Ed’s personal experience with leading-edge research and with federal and international agencies — combined with his deep understanding of the U of I System’s capabilities and aspirations — has given him a rock-solid foundation for success,” Killeen said.

“He’s off to a flying start.”

He succeeds Lawrence B. Schook, who stepped down after five years to return to his research and faculty work at the System’s universities in Urbana-Champaign and Chicago.

A longtime administrator and award-winning researcher, Seidel will lead an office that works with the System’s three universities to help manage their nearly $1 billion per year sponsored-research portfolio and oversee technology commercialization and economic development activities.

Before his appointment as interim vice president, Seidel served since 2013 as director of the National Center for Supercomputing Applications (NCSA) at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

He earned a bachelor’s degree in mathematics and physics at the College of William and Mary in 1981, a master’s degree in physics at the University of Pennsylvania in 1983 and a doctorate in relativistic astrophysics at Yale University in 1988.

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