scientist with capsul

New roles for ODAT team

Sandra Wells, PhD, who has served as Assistant Director of CTSI’s Office of Discovery and Translation (ODAT) since its inception, is stepping into the role of ODAT Director. 

Jodi Fenlon Rebuffoni, who has served as a project and program manager in ODAT for the past eight years will assume the position of ODAT Assistant Director. 

Additional staff members will be added to back-fill vacant positions and enable the office to assume these additional responsibilities.

Sandra Wells and Jodi Fenlon Rebuffoni
Sandra Wells and Jodi Fenlon Rebuffoni

Building on ODAT success

Since its formation in 2011, ODAT has administered over $19 million in clinical and translational research awards to nearly 200 projects. To date, these ODAT-supported projects have gone on to secure $72 million in subsequent funding and 38 have become licensed innovations. 

This success is primarily due to ODAT’s expertise, infrastructure, and best-practice models, including its:

  • Streamlined funding program operations.
  • Robust tracking and reporting capabilities.
  • Process for optimizing the selection and support of projects toward real-world and meaningful impacts. 

ODAT’s model has been published in the Journal of Clinical and Translational Science and Clinical and Translational Science.

“ODAT has a proven ability to help promising ideas blossom into real-world innovations that are improving people’s lives,” says Jakub Tolar, MD, PhD, Vice President for Clinical Affairs, Medical School Dean, and Campus Public Health Officer at the University of Minnesota.