University of Southern California


Appointments of Julie Slayton, David Bateshansky and Ari Aycock-Williams to OPRS, IRB & Animal Resources Leadership

Ethics and integrity are cornerstones of academic research.  They provide a foundation for how we treat research participants, serve the public, and advance knowledge and understanding.

Sound policy, training, guidance, oversight and expertise guide how we meet our ethical commitments.  Last fall, I announced a critical appointment to serve this purpose, when Dr. Michael Bowdish was selected as chair of the IRBs for Health Sciences.  I am now writing to let you know about additional appointments and changes. 

First, my thanks and best wishes go to Dr. Susan Rose, Executive Director for the Office for the Protection of Research Subjects (OPRS).  Susan will retire from USC at the end of the month.  Susan established OPRS in 2004 and has directed it ever since.  She has been a national leader in flexibility in IRB operations, and as an advocate for risk-based review at USC.  She also led USC’s effort to achieve 12 years of continual accreditation from the Association for Accreditation of Human Research Programs, creating policies, training and procedures that have enhanced USC’s commitment to protection of subjects in research.

Taking Susan’s place, I am happy to announce that Dr. Julie Slayton will become the Director for OPRS, effective April 1, while retaining her faculty appointment in the Rossier School of Education.  Julie holds both a PhD in Education Policy from UCLA and a Juris Doctorate from Pepperdine.  Since 2014, she has excelled as the IRB Chair for the University Park Campus, a position she will leave at the end of June as she takes on OPRS leadership.  Julie’s focus will be on IRB policy, education and quality assurance at USC.  As such, her position will operate in parallel to, and in collaboration with, the Senior Director for the IRB, Kristin Craun.  Both Kristin and Julie will report directly to the VP of Research.

I am also happy to announce the appointment of Dr. David Bateshansky, Pharm.D., as Vice Chair for Health Science IRB, beginning April 1.  David is a 2002 graduate of the University of Oklahoma College of Pharmacy, and completed a 12-month clinical pharmacy residency at the VA medical center in West LA. He has worked as a clinical pharmacist at Keck Medicine of USC since 2006, primarily within the Norris Cancer Hospital, including ten years in the inpatient pharmacy and the ambulatory infusion pharmacy of the Norris Cancer Hospital. In 2016, he transitioned to the investigational drug service, providing oversight and monitoring of pharmacy processes and operations for clinical trial medications. He has also been a voting member of USC’s Health Sciences IRB since 2016.  My gratitude goes to Dr. Sarmad Sadeghi for his service as HSC IRB Vice Chair.  He will step down at the end of June.

I am also pleased to announce that Dr. Aycock-Williams, DVM, has been promoted to Associate Director for Animal Resources at USC, effective March 1, succeeding Dr. Sumanth Putta, who recently accepted the promotion to Director of Animal Care and Use for Rutgers UniversityAs Associate Director, Dr. Aycock-Williams will assist in managing the daily operations of the department including all aspects of the animal care and veterinary care programs, animal care and use standards, and ensuring compliance with applicable regulations and guidelines. The Associate Director serves as Acting Director of the department in the absence of the Executive Director, Donald Casebolt.  Dr. Aycock-Williams received her DVM degree from Michigan State University in 2009 and completed residency training in laboratory animal medicine at USC and the City of Hope Beckman Research Center in 2012. She worked at USC as Clinical Veterinarian from 2012 to 2018 and Senior Clinical Veterinarian from 2018 to 2019.

Last, my office is recruiting candidates for two positions.  First, I am seeking to fill the position of IRB Chair for social and behavioral research, emphasizing research on the University Park Campus, but also supporting social and behavioral research from the Health Science Campus.  And, I am working to fill a new position: Research Integrity Officer (RIO).  The RIO will develop programs to enhance responsible conduct of research at USC, as well as to support investigations of allegations of research misconduct.   A job announcement can be found at:

Randolph Hall
Vice President of Research


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