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David Luzzi appointed to new dual role in leading Northeastern initiatives in security, innovation

Provost and Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs James C. Bean has appointed David E. Luzzi vice provost for research innovation and development and vice president for the Northeastern University Innovation Campus in Burlington, Massachusetts, effective Jan. 1, 2016.

In these new roles, Luzzi will continue his leadership of the university’s security initiatives and will coordinate the development of the Innovation Campus including the George J. Kostas Research Institute for Homeland Security, Research Park, and the Eliot Building, home of the Waters Corporation Labs and the Lowell Institute School.

“We have taken substantive strides as a university, building and executing innovative research programs, partnerships, and new facility construction,” Luzzi said. “Our Innovation Campus in Burlington now hosts activities of five of Northeastern’s colleges with growing programs at the leading edge of science, engineering, policy, and business. I thank Provost Bean for his confidence in me and look forward to working with the provost, the senior vice provost for research and graduate education, and my faculty, staff, and administration colleagues to further their success and that of the university.”

Since fall 2011, Luzzi has served as executive director of the university’s Strategic Security Initiative. As the founding leader of this initiative, Luzzi has played a key role in building on Northeastern’s existing strengths in security-related research and helping the university become a national leader in this domain. He played a critical role in the creation of the Innovation Campus, anchored by the Kostas Research Institute. He was instrumental in securing the $12 million gift for the institute from alumnus George J. Kostas, E’43.

Under Luzzi’s leadership, security-related research awards grew from $12 million to $32 million, or 13 percent to 29 percent of the total new university research awards, over a three-year period and major partnerships were established with government departments and corporations. The university launched new advanced degree programs and was designated a Center of Academic Excellence in Cyber Operations by the National Security Agency.

“David is an exceptional leader and a strategic thinker who, throughout his tenure here at Northeastern, has worked tirelessly to advance our security research profile and build strong programs and partnerships across the university,” Bean said.

Luzzi also previously served as dean of the College of Engineering from September 2007 to December 2011. During Luzzi’s tenure, the College of Engineering achieved new levels of excellence in education and research. He led the recruitment of 37 new tenured and tenure-track faculty, developed new centers and scholarly directions, oversaw a significant investment in research and teaching infrastructure, strengthened the college’s alumni engagement and philanthropy, and was a forceful spokesperson for the power of cooperative education.

Luzzi is a renowned expert in nanotechnology with extensive experience advising political and military leaders around the world. He has authored more than 120 scientific articles, and holds memberships on the Defense Science Board Task Force on Cyber Supply Chain Risk, the Innovation and Collaboration Board of Hanscom Air Force Base, and the Massachusetts High Technology Council’s Defense Technology Initiative.

Prior to Northeastern, Luzzi was also a member of the Air Force Scientific Advisory Board from 2003 to 2008—including serving as science and technology chair in 2006-07—and in 2008 he was awarded the Meritorious Civilian Service Medal by the Air Force in recognition of his service.

In addition to his new dual role, Luzzi will also serve as interim senior vice provost for research until May 1 while beginning his leadership role in Burlington. Arthur F. Kramer will assume that role on May 2.