Nominee: Nehal Thakor
Professor, University of Lethbridge
Brief Biosketch provided for the nominee:
Dr. Nehal Thakor was trained at the Sardar Patel University, Gujarat, India, and the University of Münster, Germany for his doctoral degree. He was trained at the University of Alberta, and Children’s Hospital of Eastern Ontario Research Institute, Ottawa as a postdoctoral fellow. Subsequently, he joined BioVectra Inc., Charlottetown as a Senior Scientist. Dr. Thakor was recruited to the University of Lethbridge (UofL) as an Assistant Professor and Campus Alberta Innovates Program Research Chair in 2014. He was promoted to the rank of Associate Professor in 2019. In July 2023, he was promoted to the rank of Full Professor within the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry at UofL. Dr. Thakor is also affiliated with the Arnie Charbonneau Cancer Institute (Cumming School of Medicine) and the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine at the University of Calgary. At UofL, Dr. Thakor is affiliated with the Southern Alberta Genome Sciences Centre, the Canadian Centre for Behavioral Neuroscience, and the Department of Biological Sciences. Dr. Thakor’s research is focused on RNA biology and mRNA translation regulation in cancer. To this end, he employs a combination of molecular and cellular biology, biochemistry, and pan-omics tools. Dr. Thakor has published several high-quality papers and established himself as a leader in the field. Dr. Thakor has demonstrated commitment to Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion, graduate education, and the University administration through his important work on several UofL committees. Dr. Thakor has emerged as a strong advocate for EDI in both graduate education and the University administration.
Justification provided for the nominee:
Dr. Nehal Thakor is a long-standing member of the RiboClub. He was awarded the RiboClub Blue Jacket Award in 2022. Dr. Thakor is serving on the Scientific Advisory Board of the RiboClub. Dr. Thakor has served on the Executive, and Program Committees of the NSERC-CREATE-funded RNA Innovation program, which spans across three universities in Canada (UofL, University of Sherbrooke, and University of Manitoba). So far, Dr. Thakor has co-organized three RiboWest conferences. He also served as a co-organizer for the RiboClub’s 20th Anniversary Meeting. Currently, Dr. Thakor is serving on the organizing committee of the combined RiboClub’s 25th Anniversary (RNA Canada ARN), RiboWest, and TREnD meetings. Moreover, Dr. Thakor has been providing leadership within RNA Canada ARN as the Chair of the Membership and Analytics committee. Dr. Thakor served on the Grants, and Management committees of the RNA Canada ARN. In fact, Dr. Thakor played an important role in incorporating RNA Canada ARN as a not-for-profit entity. Currently, he is spearheading the establishment of RNA Alberta ARN (not-for-profit) entity within the province of Alberta. This independent entity spans across the UofL, UofC, and UofA and will work alongside RNA Canada ARN. Dr. Thakor is committed to providing leadership as the president of RNA Alberta ARN. Thus, Dr. Thakor is a dedicated leader and most deserving candidate to serve as a member of the Board of Directors of RNA Canada ARN from the province of Alberta.