BRAC 2016: Speaker Bios

Clifford Anderson

Clifford Anderson, PhD, is the Director for Scholarly Communications at the Vanderbilt University Library. He holds a M.Div. from Harvard Divinity School, a Ph.D. from Princeton Theological Seminary, and a M.S. in Library and Information Science from the Pratt Institute. He is also a Certified Scrum Master and speaks regularly about agile project management,


Katharine Baker

Katharine Baker, PhD,  is the Associate Director of the Cal Turner Program for Moral Leadership in the Professions at Vanderbilt University. Professor Baker understands her vocation to be fostering human development, personal and professional. As a teacher and mentor, she works to assist others in becoming self-reflective individuals who can access their own inner wisdom to create new understandings and possibilities for action. She is inspired by the mission of the Cal Turner Program to help professionals form an ethical identity that motivates them to work for the common good, collaborating across professional boundaries to address our most challenging social problems. Previously, Katharine has taught in the disciplines of professional studies, leadership development, pedagogy, religion and human development, theology, pastoral care, and spirituality. Prior to her academic career, Kat worked as a professional in nonprofit and corporate settings, providing expertise in writing, corporate communications and both public and employee relations. She aspires to be a life-long learner, and she learns best by teaching.  


Beverly A. Conner

Beverly A. Conner, MBA, CMPE, JD, is Executive Director for Business Services in the Department of Medicine at Vanderbilt University Medical Center (VUMC).   Ms. Conner directs the area of Business Services for the Department of Medicine at Vanderbilt University Medical Center, a department that is ranked 4th among departments of medicine in schools of medicine in funding from the National Institute of Health (NIH) as of NIH FY15.  Ms. Conner has been with Vanderbilt serving in numerous leadership capacities for over 35 years.  Her key areas of expertise include evaluating financial resources, human resources, and systems to meet and prioritize change; developing and mentoring people; developing and implementing systems to create efficiency and improve processes; and creating a culture of engagement. Ms. Conner serves on numerous committees within and outside of Vanderbilt, including the Vanderbilt Program in Research Administration Development (VPRAD).  She is a VPRAD mentor and VPRAD advisory board member.  Ms. Conner was recognized as an exceptional leader across the five pillars of excellence and the Credo at VUMC with the Five Pillar Leader Award.



Stephanie Dean, LPC-MHSP, CEAP, is the Assistant Manager of Vanderbilt University Work/Life Connections. 


Sam Gannon

Sam Gannon, EdD is the Director of the Vanderbilt Program in Research Administrator Development & Director of Vanderbilt Linkages, Vanderbilt University Medical Center. Dr. Gannon is the director of the Vanderbilt Program in Research Administration Development, a nationally known program to education administrative, clinical and other research staff members in the best practices in administration of and compliance in sponsored research programs. His work focuses on strategies to positively impact learning and professional development for faculty, staff and students. Dr. Gannon’s research includes a number of program evaluations and program needs assessments for educational programs in higher education and non-profit program development. He is the principal investigator of a sponsored research project to examine academic medical centers as learning organizations. Together with colleagues in Tennessee and Texas, he completed a yearlong program evaluation of the US Department of Energy’s Student Undergraduate Laboratory Internship program. He has collaborated with colleagues at Harvard University, Georgia Tech, Auburn University and the University of South Carolina to teach train the trainer activities for research administration trainers and faculty members. Dr. Gannon has also be an instrumental component in Vanderbilt University Medical Center’s Junior Faculty Development Program, assisting in the curriculum development and facilitation of the sponsored research component. Dr. Gannon is an active member of the National Council of University and Research Administrators and serves on the organization’s national Professional Development Committee. He is also on the editorial board of Research Management Review.



Tiffanie M. Markus, Ph.D. is Research Assistant Professor in the Department of Health Policy at Vanderbilt University School of Medicine. Dr. Markus is the Project Director of the Tennessee Emerging Infections Program (EIP) at Vanderbilt. Her previous work has focused on a broad range of research topics including psychological neuroscience, recovery of function, oncology, and cardiovascular research. Dr. Markus received a B.A. and M.A. in Psychology from Austin Peay State University, a PhD. in Brain and Cognitive Sciences from Southern Illinois University. She joined the EIP team in January of 2015, bringing with her expertise in clinical research program management, regulatory oversight, and database design and management. She was formerly the Assistant Director for Vanderbilt Cardiovascular Clinical Research Enterprise, where she managed a multi-million dollar clinical research enterprise focused on providing innovative care at the highest ethical, regulatory and scientific standards.