Fitzpatrick led transformation
Dr. Dennis Fitzpatrick is known for his “think-big, shoot-high and don’t-be-afraid-to-ask” philosophy. Over the last decade, he has led the University of Lethbridge through an institutional transformation, and the U of L, now a leading comprehensive university, is recognized on provincial, national and international stages for its research excellence.
In June 2009, Fitzpatrick will conclude his second term as vice-president (research). The University of Lethbridge can take great pride in how far it has come over the last 10 years and set its sights even higher for the years ahead knowing that Fitzpatrick has already laid a firm foundation for the future.
His colleagues offer the following words of thanks.
“The University of Lethbridge of today would not be a reality without Dr. Fitzpatrick’s extraordinary efforts and vision. He is the institutional face for research in the community, and he has worked tirelessly recruiting researchers, building infrastructure, developing programs and bringing in funding. He has played a vital role in the history of the University of Lethbridge, and the impacts of his work will continue to be seen well into the future.”
Dr. Bill Cade
“Dennis has been extraordinarily successful in advancing the profile of water research at the University of Lethbridge, and this has translated into major successes over the past decade. He was central to the Water Institute for Semi-Arid Ecosystems (WISE) initiative, the Alberta Ingenuity Centre for Water Research and the fundraising to enable the Alberta Water and Environmental Science Building. In each of these, he demonstrated patience and persistence and a firm belief in our faculty and students. Dennis’s extensive representation at the regional, provincial and national levels has enabled our maturation into a nationally recognized centre for water research.”
Dr. Stewart Rood
“I am very grateful for the establishment of the University’s Community of Research Excellence Development Opportunities (CREDO) program and the Board of Governors University Scholars’ Chairs instituted under Dr. Fitzpatrick’s leadership. They are both significant steps toward balancing humanities and social sciences funding with the stronger and more established tradition of funding the sciences.”
Dr. Heidi MacDonald
“Dr. Fitzpatrick was absolutely instrumental in our (along with Dr. Joseph Rasmussen) decision to come to U of L. I had an excellent position at Université du Québec à Montréal, as professor and researcher, and director of the Environmental Toxicology group, TOXEN. However, Dr. Fitzpatrick’s description of the developments and growth of the U of L, the importance of water research in southern Alberta and the possibility of a new building dedicated to water research, were very exciting ideas.
Dennis was a very effective ambassador for the U of L and its research programs – brilliant, charming, open-minded, fun and very knowledgeable. He made arrangements for us to go see the University, introduced us to key people and showcased the University, the community and the region. We accepted the positions and we are very excited still.”
Dr. Alice Hontela
“Dennis played the major role in recruiting us (Dr. Alice Hontela and I) to the University of Lethbridge and in raising the funds to build the new Alberta Water and Environmental Science Building. He has played a major role right from the inception of the water initiative at the University of Lethbridge, and in addition his office has helped out significantly when it came to putting together start-up packages for new faculty that the U of L has attracted. It is no accident that research funding has increased dramatically at the U of L over the last
decade, and Dennis’s efforts have played a large role in this.”
Dr. Joseph Rasmussen
“Recently, my new Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) Chair in Gender and Health was announced. This exciting research was made possible due to the initial help and support of Dennis Fitzpatrick and Chris Nicol. In 2003, by serendipity, I discovered that radiation responses were different in males and females. I did not have any funds to further confirm these findings. So I approached Dennis and Chris for help. Without their help and support my research on the molecular mechanisms of radiation responses in males and females would not be where it is now.
Also, we (Igor and I) had enormous support from Dennis from the very first days here in Lethbridge. Actually, he helped with the research grants even prior to our arrival. He put his heart and soul into getting the first CFI grant for the Molecular Biology laboratory. The application was submitted before we arrived to Lethbridge. Dennis and the wonderful personnel of Research Services really helped out with numerous grant applications and research contracts. He gave valuable advice and important suggestions on how to improve and shape-up research proposals. Currently, Dennis has championed the establishment of the new Alberta Epigenetics Initiative, which we hope to further develop into the Alberta Epigenetics Institute. Dennis has a real vision for the
research, and he has been a great pleasure to work with.”
Dr. Olga Kovalchuk