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UNM names Duke professor new VP of research

Courtesy photo

Courtesy photo

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — After a lengthy nationwide search, the University of New Mexico has chosen Gabriel P. López, a UNM veteran, as its next vice president for research.

Provost Chaouki Abdallah made the official announcement on Wednesday. He described López as a “talented researcher and dedicated faculty member with a strong record of leadership, mentorship and service (who) will be a great addition to our senior leadership team.”

López is currently a professor of biomedical engineering and mechanical engineering & materials science at Duke University.

He is the founding director of a major National Science Foundation research center in North Carolina’s Research Triangle Park, a position he has held at Duke since 2011. He leads a team of researchers drawn from Duke, North Carolina State University, the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and North Carolina Central University.

Before moving to Duke, López was a professor at UNM. Beginning in 2005, he was the founding director of the Center for Biomedical Engineering, and from 2008 on, director of Biomedical Engineering Graduate Programs.

“I am grateful for this opportunity and am really looking forward to returning to UNM and working with the broad range of extremely talented folks across the university, as well as leading the promotion of UNM’s critically important research mission,” López said.

López has published more than 200 peer-reviewed scientific papers and book chapters and is listed as an inventor on 32 U.S. patents. He has served as principal investigator or co-principal investigator on approximately $46 million in grant awards.

Among numerous accolades, he was named a Fellow of the American Institute for Medical and Biological Engineering in 2011. He is also the recipient of an Outstanding University Inventor Award from the Semiconductor Research Corporation and an NSF Faculty Early Career Development Award. In 2006, the editors of Hispanic Engineer and Information Technology selected him as one of the “100 most important Hispanics in technology and business.”

López earned a Ph.D. at the University of Washington in 1993.