Kaler announces resignation of U’s vice president for research

In an email to faculty, Kaler said Vice President Brian Herman will step down, effective Dec. 31.

Vice President for Research Brian Herman presents an update and review of human subjects research standards at the University of Minnesota to the Senate's Higher Education Committee in the Minnesota Senate Building on March 10, 2016. Herman will resign at the end of December, University President Eric Kaler announced Nov. 2.

Maddy Fox, Daily File Photo

Vice President for Research Brian Herman presents an update and review of human subjects research standards at the University of Minnesota to the Senate’s Higher Education Committee in the Minnesota Senate Building on March 10, 2016. Herman will resign at the end of December, University President Eric Kaler announced Nov. 2.

Kevin Beckman

University of Minnesota President Eric Kaler announced Wednesday that Vice President for Research Brian Herman will be resigning from his position effective Dec. 31.

In an email to faculty Wednesday, Kaler said Herman informed him that he would return to a faculty position in the Department of Biomedical Engineering in the College of Science and Engineering.

“Over the past four years, Vice President Herman has been instrumental in helping the University adapt to the changing environment for research universities,” Kaler said in the email. “His dedication to this work has made the University a stronger and better place.”

Herman was appointed vice president for research on Jan. 1, 2013. Herman is responsible for overseeing systemwide university research and managing all sponsored research activity at the school.

University research came under scrutiny from state lawmakers and officials regarding its human subject research practices under Herman’s tenure.

Concerns about research ethics at the University surfaced after the 2004 suicide of psychiatric research participant Dan Markingson. Two reports issued in 2015, including one by the Minnesota Office of the Legislative Auditor, revealed a litany of flaws with University research procedures, conflicts of interest and other ethical concerns that prompted dozens of pledge changes by school administrators.

An audit released by the OLA last May found the University’s research reforms to be on track.

“Brian’s leadership to advance human subjects research protections will help the University be a national model,” Kaler said in his email. “I am committed to continuing his legacy in these important activities.”