Deborah L. Smith


Number of Years in Research Administration: 31

Institutions: University of Tennessee Health Science Center


Deborah L. Smith, Ed.D., is Associate Vice Chancellor for Research at The University of Tennessee Health Science Center in Memphis.  Her career at UTHSC began in the Office of Academic Affairs in the College of Medicine in 1981; she moved to the Office of Research in 1985.  Her background includes teaching at the secondary, post-secondary, and graduate levels, financial analysis, business administration, and career counseling.  She is a graduate of NCURA's Leadership Development Institute and The University of Tennessee Leadership Institute.  She has presented at regional and national professional meetings and published in professional journals.  She has served on SRA regional and national planning committees and on NCURA regional planning committees.  She is past chair of the NCURA Region III Nominating and Elections Committee and the NCURA Pre-Award neighborhood committee and has served on the NCURA Professional Development Committee and the Nominating and Leadership Development Committee and also served as an editor for the NCURA Magazine. Debbie is currently Secretary of NCURA Region III.


Debbie's responsibilities in research administration include policy development and implementation, general administration, contract negotiation, pre-award activities, and non-financial post-award activities.  She has been intimately involved in selection and implementation of electronic routing and data base systems at UTHSC.  She was instrumental in UTHSC’s joining FDP and served as UTHSC’s FDP administrative representative for four years and continues to serve on the FDP subaward task force.  She has developed strong working relationships with faculty and staff and has served on numerous campus and statewide committees.


Debbie is a member of the National Council of University Research Administrators and is a charter member of the Mid-South Area Research Administrators.  Her volunteer community activities have included WYPL--the Memphis Public Library's radio station, Shelby County Books from Birth, the Tennessee Master Gardner Program, the Memphis-MidSouth Komen Race for the Cure, the Rape Crisis Center, TWIGS--a support group for LeBonheur Children's Hospital, and the American Association of University Women Sharing Adventures in Engineering and Sciences (SHADES) Program. 

NCURA Peer Program engagements are priced as a flat fee, scaled to the sponsored programs total active award dollars in the last fiscal year, regardless of type of Peer Program engagement.