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(January 11, 2001, Gazette)

Keough named chief scientist

Dr. Kevin Keough, Memorial’s vice-president (research and international relations), has been named as Health Canada’s first chief scientist. The appointment was announced in Ottawa Jan. 4 by federal health minister Alan Rock.

As Health Canada’s inaugural chief scientist, Dr. Keough has a mandate to bring leadership, coherence and expertise to the overall strategic direction of Health Canada’s scientific responsibilities, activities and needs. He will be responsible for promoting a high quality of health research by fostering links among scientists within the federal department, across the country and around the world.

“Research can and must play and important role in improving the health of Canadians,” said Dr. Keough. “The challenges facing the chief scientist are significant, but we have the resources and the talent to enable Health Canada and Canada to be a world leader in health research and development.”

Dr. Keough will be seconded from his position at Memorial and is expected to take up his new role as chief scientist of Health Canada in April 2001. He will be headquartered in Ottawa but will continue to lead his research group at Memorial University.

Dr. Axel Meisen, Memorial’s president, congratulated Dr. Keough on his appointment.

“The appointment of a chief scientist with Health Canada is a major national initiative in research and is a great honour for Dr. Keough and Memorial University of Newfoundland,” said Dr. Meisen. “He brings a distinguished career in research and administration to this new position. I am particularly pleased that he will maintain his connections with and will continue his research at Memorial University.”

Dr. Keough received his doctoral degree from the University of Toronto in 1971. His current research interests include the molecular organization and function in lung surfactant and membrane, and liposomes as carriers for vaccines and drugs.

Dr. Keough is deputy chair of an expert advisory panel which provides guidance on federal science and technology issues to the federal cabinet. As a former executive member of the Medical Research Council, he played a lead role in the creation of the Canadian Institutes for Health Research and is now a member of its governing council. He is a founding member of the board of directors of Genome Canada. He is also a member of the boards of directors of the Genesis Group Inc., the Canadian Centre for Fisheries Innovation, the Canadian Centre for Marine Communications, C-CORE, Operation ONLINE Inc. and the Newfoundland and Labrador Science Centre. Dr. Keough is a past-president of the Canadian Federation of Biological Societies, the Canadian Society of Biochemistry and Molecular and Cellular Biology and the Canadian Association of University Research Administrators. He is also a founder of Nova Lipids Inc.

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