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Plishker Named Associate VP;
Replaces Retiring Richard Payne

Gordon A. Plishker, executive director of the Texas Research Institute for Environmental Studies and director of the Institute for Innovative Collaborative Programs at Sam Houston State University, has been named the university's associate vice president for research.

Gordon Plishker
Gordon A. Plishker

Plishker's appointment was announced by David Payne, vice president for academic affairs, and is effective August 1.

"We are delighted that Dr. Plishker has accepted this appointment. He has broad experience in these areas and has long been involved with our efforts to promote and encourage research and to work with corporations and political agencies in the university's behalf," said Payne.

Plishker will take the position currently held by Richard Payne, who retired July 31.

Richard Payne
Richard Payne

"Dr. Payne has provided distinguished service in promoting research and sponsored programs at Sam Houston State," said David Payne. "It is a fitting capstone for what has been a long career of fruitful teaching and leadership."

Plishker has served as executive director of TRIES since 1999 and director of the collaborative programs institute since 1992.

"I believe that by building its research infrastructure, the university will significantly enhance and encourage faculty and student research," said Plishker. "I look forward to working closely with members of the faculty, the deans and the vice president for academic affairs to build greater research capability and provide enhanced assistance in attaining research goals."

Before coming to Sam Houston State, Plishker was the director of research planning and development in the Department of Neurology at Baylor College of Medicine. Also at Baylor College of Medicine, he was the administrator of the Magnetic Resonance Center and an assistant professor and research administrator in the Department of Neurology.

Plishker received his doctorate in physiology from Rutgers University in 1974.

At Sam Houston State, Plishker has created, developed and overseen the Environmental Technology Development and Commercialization Center. The center is a joint project of SHSU, the city of Texas City, Sterling Chemicals, Inc., Environeering, Inc. and the Houston Advanced Research Center. The Environmental Protection Agency has provided over $2.2 million for the center to become the first international clearinghouse for verification and commercialization of emerging innovative environmental technologies.

Plishker also created and developed the Education for Tomorrow Alliance, a business/education partnership that includes the South Montgomery County Woodlands Chamber of Commerce, the Houston Advanced Research Center, the Conroe Independent School District, and many area businesses. This model program was one of 18 partnerships funded by the U.S. Department of Education, for national dissemination.

He is an architect of the National Institute for Victim Studies at Sam Houston State. The institute's mission is to promote national public awareness and understanding of victim issues through academic programs, continuing education and scholarly research. Congress has appropriated $1.5 million for this collaborative effort of the university and Mothers Against Drunk Driving.

He was a principal developer of a cooperative agreement between SHSU and the United Nations Environmental Programme's Environment Assessment Programme and Global Resource Information Database. This collaboration is directed toward improving the integration and dissemination of global environmental information, specifically, utilizing visual computing techniques via the Internet.

He currently serves as vice president of the International Consortium for the Environment. He is co-chair of the Environment and Health Committee for the Border Trade Alliance, as well as a member of other committees and working groups of the alliance. He has also served as chairman or adviser for numerous education, science and technology organizations in the Montgomery County area.

At Sam Houston State, Plishker served as facilitator for the Professional Development Committee. This committee developed a strategic plan for the implementation of telecommunications, multimedia, interactive learning, information technologies and the Internet for both on-campus and distance learning environments.

Plishker has received grants from the U.S. Army Corp of Engineers, the National Institute of Health Stroke Research, the National Institute of Health Sickle-Cell Center and several other national health organizations. In addition he has authored 58 research publications, including four book chapters.

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SHSU Media Contact: Julia May
Aug. 1, 2001
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