Pierre Harter appointed to interim associate vice president for Research

Pierre Harter

Wichita State University announces the appointment of Pierre Harter as interim associate vice president for Research.

In this position, Harter will focus on faculty-led academic research, aiming to enhance WSU’s applied research efforts and align both with its vision for applied learning.

Harter also serves as associate vice president of research operations for Industry and Defense Programs. He returned to the university in 2021 after spending 21 years in various executive leadership, research and engineering positions at Spirit AeroSystems, Bombardier Learjet and Adam Aircraft Industries. In his current position, Harter oversees some programs within the National Institute for Research and Digital Transformation and the National Institute for Aviation Research, engaging multiple university departments and IDP labs in interdisciplinary research.

Harter reports to John Tomblin, WSU executive vice president for Research and Industry and Defense Programs and NIAR executive director.

“I am confident Pierre will be an ideal leader for WSU research,” Tomblin said. “He has a passion and track record for bringing together multiple departments to accomplish a broader goal. This will serve WSU well, not only in efforts to increase WSU research programs, but also to grow applied learning and enrollment in graduate and undergraduate programs.”

Tomblin resumed oversight of the division of Research in March.

Harter completed his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in aerospace engineering from Wichita State. As a student, he worked in the Advanced Materials Lab at the National Institute for Aviation Research. He earned his MBA from Newman University and was a previously an adjunct lecturer for the business school there. He served on the WSU Board of Trustees for nine years and is currently a member of the USD 385 school board and the Industry Advisory Board for WSU’s College of Engineering.

Faculty and staff will have an opportunity to meet with Harter and Research Office staff at an event in early August.