2022 Rising Star Award: Kelsey Hassevoort

The NORDP Rising Star Award recognizes individuals for their outstanding, early volunteer contributions to NORDP and strong potential for future contributions to the organization and the profession or the field. 

Kelsey Hassevoort, Rising Star Awardee

Who: Kelsey Hassevoort, Research Development Manager

Where: University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign

Number of years in research development: 4

Length of NORDP membership: 3 years


What initiative are you the most proud of in your role as a NORDP volunteer?

I have been involved with both the Professional Development (PD) Committee and Committee on Inclusive Excellence (CIE) during my time with NORDP. I am particularly excited about the success of the TnT (Tools & Tips) talks that have grown out of PD. These are monthly informal events that bring members together without having the high bar of a formal presentation. TnT talks have become a space for people to give advice and share strategies and tools that they use in their day-to-day work, and I think they’ve come to serve as a virtual water cooler of sorts for NORDP members.  It has been gratifying to see the TnT concept evolve from a PD committee idea to actual events for NORDP members. I hosted one this spring and it felt like I was talking to forty of my closest friends!  NORDP members can join these sessions live or watch recordings in the LMS.


How has your service to NORDP enhanced your career?

My work with NORDP has not only broadened my professional network, but it has also provided me with a deeper understanding of what a career in RD can look like. I have been fortunate to be able to do a lot of job crafting throughout my (relatively short) career in RD, which has allowed me to create a perfect blend of responsibilities in my current role as a Research Development Manager focused on community engagement. I wasn’t quite sure if there was anyone else in NORDP thinking about the same kinds of issues, but that concern was quickly put to rest when I posted to the NORDP conference idea board about leading a conference session about research impact or community engagement and immediately heard from multiple NORDP colleagues interested in teaming up! I have learned so much from the other members of the NORDP community, from strategies and approaches that I have brought back to my home institution to ideas about the directions in which I’d like to guide my career in the future.


How did you hear about NORDP and what made you join initially?

When I joined the Interdisciplinary Health Sciences Institute at the University of Illinois, my fellow RD colleagues were all already NORDP members. My boss immediately encouraged me to join and I’m fortunate to work at an Institute that financially supports staff professional development, so joining NORDP was an easy call. The first (and so far, only) in-person NORDP event I’ve attended was the fall 2019 Great Lakes regional meeting at the University of Michigan, and the first person I remember meeting there was Jill Jividen, who was incredibly welcoming. I know many of my fellow NORDP members have said this, but after spending that meeting in a room full of brilliant RD professionals, hearing them share their philosophy about their work, I had that moment of realization that, “these are my kind of people.” RD folks are smart, organized, and love to think about big questions.  I went to the sessions and remember thinking that it was so cool that there are so many people whose job it is to think about these things.


What relationships have you built as a result of NORDP?

My first connections were primarily within the Great Lakes region with people I met at that first regional meeting. But my committee work over the past year or two has expanded that network significantly.  I have also participated in the mentoring program as a mentee for the last two years, and am embarking upon my first year as a NORDP mentor after serving as a Career Navigator last year. As I’ve become more involved in presenting at the NORDP conference, I’ve made connections with my co-presenters who are each doing incredible work at their institutions when it comes to research impact. These relationships clearly take many forms, but they have all furthered my understanding and made me more excited to expand my involvement in NORDP. The relationships I’ve built and the diverse perspectives my NORDP colleagues have generously shared have certainly given me a better perspective to bring back to my own RD work at the University of Illinois. 


Describe how NORDP has changed from when you initially joined

I have been really pleased about how innovative NORDP members and leadership have been in the face of the pandemic that forced us to change how we gather at the regional and national level. Virtual retreats and conferences have offered new ways to engage with each other, and our conference committees have figured out how to make them energizing and fun! There is so much value in coming together and I’m glad that we have been able to continue to do so throughout the pandemic. It has also been heartening to see the increased focus and conversations on DEIB and accessibility issues, and I hope that each of us will continue to advance the progress that has been made so far within NORDP and will push for change at our home institutions.


What recommendations do you have for members to get more involved with NORDP?

I would recommend picking a committee or a program that sounds interesting and try it out by showing up for a committee meeting or event! When I was exploring where I could volunteer within NORDP, I looked at each of the committees and talked to other NORDP members to get a sense of how each committee functions. The NORDP committees I’ve served on so far have been full of welcoming members who are happy to help new members get their bearings and encourage others to step up and lead initiatives without putting too much pressure on them. That is one of the best things about NORDP as a volunteer organization – people are willing to let you serve at your own pace and find the thing that is exciting to you!

Stepping into a leadership position within the Communication Working Group has also been a true growth opportunity for me, and I would strongly encourage my fellow NORDP members to take on a leadership role within the organization where they can, whether it is as a mentor, a committee chair or working group lead, or the host of a virtual event! Serving in a leadership role can help you recognize talents you didn’t realize you had and find ways to build skills and stretch yourself in ways that you may not be able to at your home institution.

At its core, service to NORDP offers a chance to meet a lot of great people, further your own development, and help create value for an organization doing amazing work. So try it out!

2022 Rising Star Award: Daniel Arriaga

The NORDP Rising Star Award recognizes individuals for their outstanding, early volunteer contributions to NORDP and strong potential for future contributions to the organization and the profession or the field. 

Daniel Arriaga

Who: Daniel Arriaga, Assistant Director for Research Engagement

Where: University of Texas at Austin

Number of years in research development: 6

Length of NORDP membership: 6


What initiative are you the most proud of in your role as a NORDP volunteer?

I would say the re-envisioning of the Leadership Forum would be the initiative I am most proud of. The updated Leadership Forum came in response to a call in NORDP’s strategic plan. Our group worked on the effort for a year, evolving from the initial call for applications to meetings to topics, to the final product. We engaged many veteran and senior NORDP members throughout the process. I feel that we truly absorbed what they shared, and we were able to inject new ideas from fresh perspectives as well. It was truly a two-way street of ideas that came together.

We are hoping that it can become a central tenet of the professional development that NORDP offers, and have strived to make it relevant to help prepare current and future leaders in the field. We hope that it helps reinforce the importance that Research Development plays in our institutions as well. How has your service to NORDP enhanced your career?

My service has benefited my career in many ways. The most impactful area has been to allow me to explore diverse perspectives from across the U.S. and beyond. It has been interesting to learn how different RD colleagues approach various challenges and opportunities. I believe that diversity is something to be celebrated and applauded. At times academia can be a very siloed environment, so having access to the hugely diverse membership of NORDP has been incredibly valuable to me.


How did you hear about NORDP and what made you join initially?

At the beginning of my RD career, I was encouraged to join by my then supervisor, Jaclyn Shaw. In the beginning, I was somewhat loosely affiliated, participating in professional development sessions and the 2017 Conference in Colorado, but not much beyond that. When I was looking to transition to UT Austin, part of what attracted me to the role was the fact that Jennifer Lyon Gardner, UT’s Deputy Vice President for Research, was very active in the organization. Almost immediately after I came on board, she encouraged me to join the Professional Development (PD) committee. I followed her advice and took advantage of my prior PD related work. Ultimately, the experience of riding shotgun with her propelled me to even more involvement, which has culminated in me joining the Conference Committee for 2023!


What relationships have you built as a result of NORDP?

There are many examples that come to mind, but my work with Kelsey Hassevoort and Nathan Meier for our last conference presentation have really helped to expand my vision of what a research impact arm can do. The strategic partnerships that I support on behalf of the UT research enterprise rely heavily on

the relationship building skills that NORDP helps to foster and support. Because of my relationships with these and other NORDP professionals, I feel more confident in growing out our research impact arm to facilitate community-based research & interaction, and more broadly engage with researchers here at UT. Additionally, if it was not for NORDP I would not have learned about ARIS (Advancing Research Impact in Society). I am participating in the current ARIS Organizational Research Impact Capacity (ORIC) cohort. My hope is that this will help me learn how to better connect our local community with researchers and explore ways to scale up our partnership building capacity so that our efforts are sustainable long term. The collegial environment of my work with the PD committee also connected me with Becca Latimer

who inspired me to join the conference committee. NORDP has a reinforcing positive culture where I admire the work of my peers which only encourages me to continue my volunteer work. Overall, the biggest reward from my NORDP engagement has been the support and structure which have helped me tremendously.


Describe how NORDP has changed from when you initially joined

When I first joined it was a challenge to filter all of the content coming at me. It is less daunting now with tools like the LMS. NORDP truly embraced the virtual world we were forced into with the pandemic. The conference planners have put together amazing virtual conferences over the past two years. We are more put together, think more strategically, and are more willing to adapt and change. In the beginning I did not feel as connected or that I had as much of a say. I think we are now more welcoming to new ideas and fresh perspectives. I believe everyone should have a stake in the organization and I think that NORP has created an environment that welcomes new points of view.


What recommendations do you have for members to get more involved with NORDP?

I would say to take a bite out of every committee. Go to an information session, check out the

Professional Development activities, think about changes you would like to see, figure out what you are passionate about, and explore where you think you can make an impact. Challenge your own biases and perspectives. So much of our work is relationship based and engaging with NORDP will help you build capacity of your own networks to enhance the quality research happening at your institution. There is never a shortage of ways to get involved and you will find it rewarding if you take advantage of your engagement!

Compiled by Daniel Campbell, Member Services Committee

NORDP’s International Collaboration

Karen Eck, Ph.D. and Gretchen Kiser, Ph.D. presented an online workshop, Research Development: Contextual and Relational Approaches to Institutional Research Support, in early December 2021 to research management professionals in India as part of IRMI, or India Research Management Initiative, an initiative of the DBT/Wellcome Trust India Alliance for strengthening institutional support for research in India. Reflecting on the experience of delivering a workshop outside of typical work hours (2:00 AM PST in this case!), Kiser commented that “although engaging with international partners may involve odd hours, it is nonetheless interesting and exciting.”

The opportunity came about after Savita Ayyar, Ph.D., a consultant leading the IRMI initiative, attended a talk given by Eck, Kiser and Jacob Levin, Ph.D. during the International Network of Research Management Societies (INORMS) conference in Spring 2021. After the conference, Ayyar inquired after an interactive workshop offering for the recently formed IRMI network, who hosted their first conference in January 2021.

Research Administration (RA) is in its early stages in India and is growing with new careers in both research development (RD) and RA. Ayyar says, “India has tremendous opportunities for team science, and Research Development can play an important role in nurturing these large-scale collaborations.  The April 2021 INORMS workshop by NORDP colleagues provided excellent examples of how team science could be professionally facilitated and how to hire people and build local capacity for this purpose. This motivated me to connect with Dr Eck and Dr Kiser, to explore possibilities for a joint workshop for our colleagues in India. We kept in touch and it was wonderful to see the workshop taking place later in the year.”

At the virtual December IRMI workshop, a first of its kind for NORDP, over 40 people from a variety of Indian university, research and private sector settings participated. They explored a variety of RD roles through interactive simulations with small group discussions that highlighted RD contextual and relational approaches, skills, and activities employed in cross-campus and cross-sector partnerships. 

NORDP joined INORMS in July 2020 and is committed to engaging an international audience and partnering with sister organizations around the world to provide professional development opportunities to its 1000+ membership. International engagement is led by the Strategic Alliances Committee (SAC) through its International Working Group and NORDP Liaison program. If you are interested to learn more, please contact SAC co-chair, Karen Eck, at keck@odu.edu.

Dr. Savita Ayyar is currently leading Jaquaranda Tree, an independent consultancy service she founded in 2017 that is aimed at supporting organizations with their research management needs. Prior to this she built an RD office about eight years ago at the National Center for Biological Sciences (NCBS) in India. She describes the experience as a “once in a lifetime opportunity that was tremendously rewarding.”

Dr. Karen Eck is Assistant Vice President for Research at Old Dominion University (ODU) in Norfolk, Virginia. She holds a Ph.D. in Experimental Psychology and completed a post-doc in psycho- and neurolinguistics at the Université de Montréal in Québec, Canada. Eck served on the NORDP Board of Directors from 2015-2019, as President in 2018-2019, and currently co-leads the Strategic Alliances Committee and represents NORDP on the International Network of Research Management Societies (INORMS) Council. She was selected in 2020 as a PEERD Expert, consulting individually and in teams for colleges and universities seeking institutional assessment of research development programs, best practices and capacity building. In 2021, she was honored with a NORDP Fellow designation to recognize her sustained contributions to NORDP and the practice and field of research development.

Dr. Gretchen Kiser is the Executive Director of the Research Development Office (RDO) at University of California San Francisco (UCSF) and a long-time research development professional. She holds a Ph.D. in Molecular and Cellular Biology. Kiser has been a member of NORDP since 2012 and served on the NORDP Board of Directors from 2014 – 2018 and as its President from 2016 – 2017. She serves as co-chair of both NORDP’s Committee on Inclusive Excellence and Strategic Alliances Committee. She was honored in 2020 as a NORDP Fellow and in 2021 with NORDP’s Leadership Award, which recognizes exceptional leadership and/or a deep commitment to volunteerism in ways that advance the profession and field of research development.

NORDP currently has 67 international members and has recently become part of a new initiative, the

INORMS Sister Association Reciprocal Benefit Strategy (ISARBS).  This will allow participating members of the INORMS community of research management associations to benefit from discounted rates on certain events, publications and other products offered by other associations in the international INORMS community

If you are a member of a participating INORMS association outside of North America, NORDP is happy to offer you the member rate for our annual Conference registration.  Please visit https://www.nordp.org/overseas-partners for details on ISARBS and participation in NORDP’s conference April 24-28, 2022.

Compiled by Daniel Campbell & Sharon Pound from the Communications Working Group

Member Services Committee Update – Fall 2018

This is the first in a series of periodic updates on activities of the Member Services Committee (MSC).

NORDP membership continues at an all-time high, hovering around 900 members. This is 100 more than last year at this time. What an exciting time to be a NORDP member!

MSC’s primary purpose is to recruit and retain members. We also work with other NORDP committees to improve member resources and services to enhance the member experience.

A few of the many projects we are advancing during NORDP’s FY19 are described briefly here:

  • Ron Fleischman and Kendra Mingo are co-leading the PUI Subcommittee to engage and increase the number of active NORDP members working at PUIs. Ron is spearheading a PUI “Affinity Group” application to the NORDP Board.  PUI Affinity Group status would provide opportunities to increase support and resources to this group of members.
  • Vanity Campbell is leading the MSI Subcommittee’s efforts to enhance outreach to current members and recruit potential members working at MSI’s, which includes HBCU, Hispanic Serving, Tribal, and other underrepresented groups.
  • Samar Sengupta and Maile Henson are researching potential interest in establishing new NORDP member types for retirees (to help retain and share extensive knowledge of the RD field) and for postdocs who might be recruited to the RD field.
  • Gretchen Kiser is leading the Salary Survey Subcommittee’s efforts to update NORDP’s salary survey, with plans to launch in early 2019 and present results at the 2019 NORDP Conference in Providence, RI.

MSC knows that NORDP members are doing great things at their home institutions and we want to hear about them. Please tell us about your special achievements or recognitions so we can share them with our NORDP colleagues around the world. (Send to MSC member Dan Campbell at dcampbel@odu.edu.)

If you would like to learn more about the Member Services Committee please contact our chair Kathy Cataneo at k.cataneo@unh.edu or co-chair Kay Tindle at Kayla.Tindle@ttu.edu.