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Fenstermacher appointed chief research information officer at Massey

Jul 17, 2014


VCU Massey Cancer Center research member David A. Fenstermacher, Ph.D., has been appointed chief research information officer at Massey.

In this role, Fenstermacher will oversee all aspects of the cancer center’s informatics activities. Specifically, he will oversee the Office of IT Services, which implements and supports Massey’s computing and peripheral technologies; the Cancer Research Informatics and Services (CRIS) Core, which provides informatics systems for data acquisition, integration and processing to support and enhance research across Massey; and the OnCore Enterprise Research system, which provides data management for Massey’s clinical trials. He will also collaborate with basic science, translational and clinical researchers at Massey to determine their needs for data management and analytic services to support the emergence of personalized health care, and work with VCU Health System IT and VCU IT to develop novel information systems to realize that vision.

“We’re pleased to welcome David Fenstermacher to Massey. He brings an exceptional level of expertise and strong background in research informatics to this senior-level position,” said Gordon D. Ginder, M.D., director of VCU Massey Cancer Center, Lipman Chair in Oncology and professor of internal medicine at VCU School of Medicine. “His appointment highlights the increasingly critical role that bioinformatics, biomedical informatics and information technology play in realizing our research goals.”

Fenstermacher joined VCU in August 2013 as a professor of biostatistics and with a joint appointment as chief research information officer for both VCU and the VCU Health System. Housed in the VCU Center for Clinical and Translational Research (CCTR), Fenstermacher leads the university and health system’s clinical and translational informatics programs. He coordinates the clinical research informatics activities and is responsible for leading efforts to ensure informatics systems support and advance the research objectives and mission of the university and the health system. He works directly with researchers to document, analyze and translate their needs into technical designs and informatics solutions.

“It is imperative in today’s research environment to promote the effective use of informatics technologies across multiple research disciplines to transform new scientific and health care data into knowledge that will lead to innovative treatments for cancer,” said Fenstermacher.  “Overall, the goal is to support Massey’s translational research program and I am looking forward to closely working with Massey scientists, clinicians and IT professionals to accelerate the use of evidence-based medicine for the betterment of human health.”

Fenstermacher came to VCU from the H. Lee Moffitt Cancer Center and Research Institute and the University of South Florida, where he served as chair and associate professor in the Department of Biomedical Informatics. Prior to his work at the Moffitt Cancer Center, he was the director of the Biomedical Informatics Facility at the University of Pennsylvania and the director of the Center for Bioinformatics at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. As an expert in bioinformatics, he has worked on numerous federally funded grants, written and contributed to peer-reviewed journal articles and has been invited to give lectures around the world. Fenstermacher earned his Ph.D. in genetics and molecular biology from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and received a bachelor’s degree from Bloomsburg University of Pennsylvania.

Editor’s note: Some text re-purposed from an article originally written by Frances Dumenci of University Public Affairs.

Written by: Jenny Owen

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