Talented research staff personnel from assistants to managers are essential to successfully conducting impactful research. In this post-COVID era, the challenge of attracting, developing, supporting, and retaining high performing research personnel is more daunting than ever for faculty researchers and non-faculty executives responsible for placing and leading clinical research teams.
This two-part virtual conference brings together preeminent speakers who are challenging stereotypes and outdated ideas of research staffing, weaving a shared vision for productive, rewarding career paths, and collaboratively developing creative solutions for building the teams critical to growing and sustaining the research enterprise.
This conference is designed for faculty who conduct clinical and behavioral research and for non-faculty executives responsible for leading clinical research teams. The conference is limited to the first 250 registrants.
Conference co-chairs, Dr. Shelley Johns and Dr. Michelle Martin, bring their combined 40+ years of clinical research experience to convene a conference with experts and innovators who will present best practices for hiring, engaging, and retaining high performing research staff.
There is no fee to register for this conference.
Part I: Friday, April 21, 2023
Welcome and Introduction
11:00 AM – 11:05 AM EDT (10:00-10:05 CDT/9:00-9:05 MDT/8:00-8:05 PDT)
Shelley A. Johns, PsyD, HSPP, ABPP, Conference Co-Chair, Indiana University School of Medicine and Regenstrief Institute
Michelle Y. Martin, PhD, FACSM, Conference Co-Chair, The University of Tennessee Health Science Center College of Medicine and Tennessee Clinical and Translational Science Institute
Developing Highly Engaged Teams in Todays Changing Workplaces
Brian J. Brim, M.A., Ed.D.
11:05 AM – 1:35 PM EDT (10:05-12:35 CDT/9:05-11:35 MDT/8:05-10:35 PDT)
Session description: In recent years, the world of work has continued to shift and evolve more than ever before, and this means the needs of employees are shifting as well. Gallup is a world leader in workplace and culture research, analytics, and advice with a focus on helping leaders and organizations solve their most pressing problems. Gallup’s own Dr. Brian Brim will focus on some of the most compelling information and advice around the most pressing issues facing leaders today, and the steps being taken to positively impact those issues. This interactive session will look at what employees need from their leaders in times of disruption, what creates engagement on the highest performing teams, effectively navigating hybrid/remote work, managing through change and disruption, and increasing wellbeing within the workplace. All with a focus on creating stronger outcomes such as attracting and retaining talent, building more collaborative teams, and understanding how the work being done can create more development and growth for employees.
Brian Brim, M.A., Ed.D., has served as a consultant, adviser and executive coach to CEOs and other top executives in some of the world’s leading companies across a multitude of industries since 1989. His insights have helped companies optimize their organizational potential to improve key business outcomes and increase performance by leveraging their culture, talent, and human capital strategies. Dr. Brim brings his expertise to partnerships with top executives and organization, helping them focus on improving culture through forward-thinking research, analytics, advice, and consulting in key areas of the employee life cycle. These areas include attracting and recruiting, selection, onboarding, performance management, team diagnostics and effectiveness, succession planning, organizational development and learning, strengths-based programs, and employee engagement efforts. Brian has played a leading role in launching many highly successful client offerings and interventions, including some of Gallup’s key consulting frameworks and flagship leadership and management programs. Building on his significant expertise, Dr. Brim will communicate how data driven solutions and insight gained in the corporate world can transform the academic research landscape and our research teams.
1:35 PM – 2:00 PM EDT (12:35-1:00 CDT/11:35-12:00 MDT/10:35-11:00 PDT)
Creating & Managing the Most Excellent and Efficient Research Teams in the Universe!
Marie Anne Bakitas, DNSc, NP-C, FPCN, FAAN
2:00 PM – 3:00 PM EDT (1:00-2:00 CDT/12:00-1:00 MDT/11:00-12:00 PDT)
Session description: Few investigators have had formal training in skills such as human resources, team building, strategic planning, or budget management. Many investigators start their careers as clinicians inspired to do research and build teams to support this vision. In this presentation, Dr. Bakitas will reflect on developing a research team, defining moments and mistakes, what her team taught her, and what she learned along the journey.
Marie Anne Bakitas, DNSc, NP-C, FPCN, FAAN, is Professor, Associate Dean for Research and Scholarship, School of Nursing, Co-Director, Center for Palliative and Supportive Care Research Center, Division of Geriatrics, Gerontology, and Palliative Medicine, Department of Medicine at the University of Alabama at Birmingham, and co-chair, Palliative and End-of-Life Committee, Southwest Oncology Group. She has developed innovative methods, such as tele-health & tele-consultation, to improve and implement strategies for increasing palliative and supportive care access for under-represented and under-resourced persons with serious illness & their family caregivers. Her work has been extended beyond cancer to other serious illnesses and is working with international collaborators in Singapore, Turkey, and Iran to bring palliative care to everyone, everywhere, every time it’s needed. Dr. Bakitas has published over 200 original data-based papers, book chapters, and books. She is an American Academy of Nursing and Palliative Care Nursing Fellow.
Empowering Research Staff Using a Coaching Conversation Framework
J. Nicholas Dionne-Odom, PhD, RN, ACHPN, FPCN, FAAN
3:00 PM – 4:00 PM EDT (2:00-3:00 CDT/1:00-2:00 MDT/12:00-1:00 PDT)
Session description: Busy principal investigators can spend considerable time having conversations with staff about their role, how to prioritize tasks, and how to navigate challenges. This presentation will present a framework for having a coaching conversation that focuses more on asking open-ended, thought provoking, and engaging questions rather than giving advice and solving problems for staff.
J. Nicholas Dionne-Odom, PhD, RN, ACHPN, FPCN, FAAN is an Associate Professor in the School of Nursing at the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB) and Co-Director of Caregiver and Bereavement Support Services in the UAB Center for Palliative and Supportive Care. His research focuses on developing and clinical trials testing of early telehealth palliative care interventions for under-resourced family caregivers of persons with advanced cancer. He is currently funded by the National Cancer Institute, the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation, and the Cambia Health Foundation.
Conference Day #1 Wrap-Up
4:00 PM – 4:15 PM EDT (3:00-3:15 CDT/2:00-2:15 MDT/1:00-1:15 PDT)
Part II: April 24, 2023
Are We Searching for Unicorns? Together We Can Change the Clinical Research Professional Landscape
Denise C. Snyder, MS, RD, LDN
11:00 AM – 1:00 PM EDT (10:00-12:00 CDT/9:00-11:00 MDT/8:00-10:00 PDT)
Session description: Leaders across Academic Medical Centers (AMCs) have identified a need to strengthen the clinical research workforce and infrastructure to keep up with growing clinical research portfolios. Besides a lack of systems and standard policies/procedures, developing competent research staff remains burdensome and costly. This presentation will cover strategies for identifying and hiring capable research staff and professionalizing the clinical research workforce to continue to produce high quality research. This presentation will also advocate for AMCs to better define the role of the clinical research professional and build out a trustworthy, competent central clinical research support team.
Denise C. Snyder, MS, RD, LDN is an Associate Dean for Clinical Research for Duke University School of Medicine, and responsible for planning, developing, and implementing processes, systems, educational programs, and other activities central to supporting clinical research at Duke. In this role, she leads the Duke Office of Clinical Research (DOCR) a central support office of expertise in coverage analysis, study logistics, data management, regulatory oversight, workforce innovation, and guidance for clinical research operations for Duke as a site. She has developed a research operations team, manages the development of business processes that provide a foundation for the Clinical Trial Management System and the newly implemented electronic health record, oversees the implementation of the clinical research education and communications team, and leads the Research Practice Manager and Clinical Research IT committees where applicable to the research community.
1:00 PM – 1:30 PM EDT (12:00-12:30 CDT/11:00-11:30 MDT/10:00-10:30 PDT)
Learning from the Best: A Panel Discussion with Highly Effective, Long-term Research Staff
1:30 PM – 2:30 PM EDT (12:30-1:30 CDT/11:30-12:30 MDT/10:30-11:30 PDT)
Aquila Brown-Galvan, B.S., MPH
Aquila Brown-Galvan is a Program Director who has worked at the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB) for 16 years. She has spent the past 14 years in the Division of Preventive Medicine where she works on research projects specializing in healthcare economics, cancer survivorship, and financial toxicity. Ms. Brown earned her B.S. degree in Health Science from Oakwood University and an MPH with a concentration in Health Behavior from UAB.
Charles “Curt” C. Austin, BFA, M.Div.
Charles “Curt” Austin is a Project Specialist working with Richard L. Roudebush HSR&D in Indianapolis. Curt has 12 years of clinical research experience including his work as a research assistant, a project coordinator, and a Clinical Research Direct Line Manager. He has worked for Indiana University, Syneos Health, Eli Lilly, and the Veteran’s Administration. He has supported both qualitative and quantitative research in a variety of specialty areas including oncology, TIA and stroke, headache, sleep apnea, and healthcare to transgender persons. He is currently the project coordinator for the CSR&D VAccine study which is characterizing postvaccination COVID-19 clinical outcomes and identifying factors associated with vaccine failure among the nation’s Veteran population.
Diane Bresch, RN, BSN, CCRC
Diane Bresch is a Research Practice Manager in the Duke Office of Clinical Research. She leads a large team of Clinical Research Coordinators and Clinical Research Nurse Coordinators. This team works on both industry and federal funded studies in Duke’s Early Phase Unit, Duke’s free standing Research facility, and various departments across Duke. Prior to coming to Duke in 2018, Diane worked as a Clinical Research Nurse at the University of North Carolina for almost 20 years in both industry and NIH trials.
Brie Sullivan, MS, PMP
Brie Sullivan is a Project Manager working in the Health and Behavioral Innovations in Technology (HABIT) Lab at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Center in Seattle. She has been working in healthcare and clinical research for 12 years, managing federally- and industry-sponsored multisite projects in digital/mobile health, health behavior change, cancer prevention, cancer survivorship, traumatic brain injury, and epilepsy. She currently manages the HABIT Lab’s three NIH-funded R01 grants: randomized controlled trials to test a mobile app to help cancer patients quit smoking, a chatbot to help smokers quit, and a remote telephone weight loss program.
Panel Moderator: Lori N. Losee, MA
Lori Losee is Director of Operations for the Indiana University Center for Health Services & Outcomes Research at Regenstrief Institute, Inc. in Indianapolis. With background in business management and clinical rehabilitation psychology, she has been working at the intersection of program development and translational health services research for over 15 years.
Conference Day #2 Wrap-Up
2:30 PM – 2:45 PM EDT (1:30-1:45 CDT/12:30-12:45 MDT/11:30-11:45 PDT)