BJU Hires Full-Time Research Director
On August 1, 2012, Dr. Steve Figard will become the first full-time Research Director for Bob Jones University. He will take over from our part-time Interim Research Director, Dr. Amy Tuck, who will become a full-time faculty member in the Department of Biology.
Dr. Figard is well qualified to coordinate faculty research, as well as to conduct his own research program focused on cancer. He comes to us with over 25 years of experience as a research biochemist at Abbott Laboratories near Chicago, where he effectively managed research teams as lead scientist.
He earned a BS in Neurobiology from Cornell University, an MS in Chemistry/Biochemistry from Northern Illinois University and a PhD in Biochemistry (Immunology) from Florida State University. Following his PhD work, Dr. Figard did postdoctoral study at Los Alamos Laboratories—developing techniques related to radiolabeled antibodies.
During his more than 25 years at Abbott, Dr. Figard developed a wide variety of automated in vitro diagnostic immunoassays. His immunoassay for the hepatitis C virus was ranked the best in the world by the Paul Ehrlich Institute in Europe after they tested all the products on the market at that time (late 1990s). He has developed four immunoassays related to cancer (PSA, CEA, AFP and CA19-9) and was senior lead scientist for all the diagnostic cancer assays on the ARCHITECT system for total and free PSA (prostate specific antigen). Overall, Dr. Figard’s work produced two patents. He is the author of a number of peer-reviewed journal articles, wrote a chapter for each of two books and has given more than 40 scientific presentations.
Contributions to the Science & Engineering Endowment Fund made possible the 2008 construction of the Cancer Research Lab on the BJU campus. Now with the arrival of Dr. Steve Figard, we are poised to enter a new era in a long tradition of excellence in training scientists. He says of the Cancer Research Lab: “I look forward to helping develop a research program that will fully equip the next generation of scientists to demonstrate the power of a Christlike character and a Christian worldview in producing quality science.”
Chair, Department of Biology
Bob Jones University