School of Medicine selects Dr. Laura Erker as program director of strategic partnerships

Dr. Laura Erker
Dr. Laura Erker

Dan Marks, M.D., Ph.D., senior associate dean for research, OHSU School of Medicine, announced that Laura Erker, Ph.D., has been selected as program director of strategic partnerships, effective October 25.

In that role, Dr. Erker will manage research collaborations with external partners for the School of Medicine, reporting to Dr. Marks. This includes alliances with entities such as pharmaceutical companies and other industry partners, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL) and various research institutes, academic health care centers and other relevant partners.

“Laura brings excellent experience and a proven track record of success, which will be invaluable in meeting the goals and objectives of the school’s strategic partnerships,” said Dr. Marks. “Please join me in welcoming Laura to our team.”

Dr. Erker will be responsible for the success of these collaborations and will serve as the school’s primary point of contact for faculty research and development opportunities with industry. She’ll work collaboratively with the OHSU Office of Collaborations and Entrepreneurship and business development functions across OHSU.

“I look forward to working collaboratively with OHSU team members and external companies in partnership with development and stewardship,” said Dr. Erker. “I am especially excited to talk directly with all of OHSU’s researchers to understand our institutional strengths and interests.”

Dr. Erker earned her Ph.D. in biomedical science from the University of California, San Diego in 2004. She has nine years of clinical trial experience and fourteen years of basic research experience. Prior to this position, she served as executive director of the Casey Eye Institute’s Reading Center at OHSU, with primary responsibility for negotiating clinical trial-related budgets and related service contracts with industry sponsors. She holds an appointment of research assistant professor of ophthalmology, OHSU School of Medicine.