In January 2016, the Office of Research and Economic Development launched a Dare to Discover campaign showcasing researchers, scholars, and creators from across the University of Iowa, including a series of banners throughout downtown Iowa City. Here you can learn the stories behind the personal faces of discovery and creativity.

Saba Ali

Saba Ali

Dare to
Launch Careers

Under Ali’s leadership, HOPE was selected as one of 12 of Gov. Terry Branstad’s STEM Scale-Up projects in 2012-13.

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James Ankrum

James Ankrum

Dare to
Bioengineer Cells

Cell-based therapies have demonstrated incredible capabilities to profoundly heal what was previously un-healable.

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Natoshia  M. Askelson

Natoshia M. Askelson

Dare to
Promote Nutrition

Learning to make healthy choices as a child carries over into adulthood, improving quality of life.

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Eloy Barragán

Eloy Barragán

Dare to
Choreograph Grace

Throughout his career, Eloy Barragán has stretched the boundaries of dance.

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Nicholas Bowman

Nicholas Bowman

Dare to
Understand Undergraduates

When we have a more educated society, everyone benefits.

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Azeez Butali

Azeez Butali

Dare to
Prevent Clefts

Azeez Butali is exploring innovative ways to prevent cleft palates.

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Barry Carter

Barry Carter

Dare to
Prevent Heart Disease

One American dies every 39 seconds from cardiovascular disease, yet these deaths are preventable.

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Chris Coffey

Chris Coffey

Dare to
Design Trials

The question was simple: does medication that prevents adult migraines also work for children?

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Will Coghill-Behrends

Will Coghill-Behrends

Dare to
Advance Educators

Will Coghill-Behrends equips both undergraduates and experienced instructors to be better innovators in the 21st century.

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Mary Cohen

Mary Cohen

Dare to
Lift Voices

Choral singing has the power to connect body and spirit in communion in a way that both creates beauty and affirms humanity.

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Charles Connerly

Charles Connerly

Dare to
Sustain Communities

Charles Connerly has a unique take on how to build a community that will thrive generation after generation.

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David Cwiertny

David Cwiertny

Dare to
Track Pollutants

David Cwiertny explores the risks and impacts of unregulated pollutants in the environment.

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Sandra Daack-Hirsch

Sandra Daack-Hirsch

Dare to
Grasp Genetics

Sandra Daack-Hirsch never loses sight of the human side of her research on genetic disorders.

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Peter Damiano

Peter Damiano

Dare to
Assess Policy

Peter Damiano regularly shares research findings with policymakers to help them understand the nuances of challenging policy issues.

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Bill Doucette

Bill Doucette

Dare to
Heal Communities

Bill Doucette uses individual social psychology, exchange, and organization models to study pharmacist and physician behavior.

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John D’Agata

John D’Agata

Dare to
Question the Essay

John D’Agata pushes the boundaries of the essay in the classroom.

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Ed Folsom

Ed Folsom

Dare to
Share Whitman

Co-directed by Ed Folsom, the Walt Whitman Archive was one of the first major digital humanities projects.

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Claire Fox

Claire Fox

Dare to
Celebrate Culture

Claire Fox and her co-editors have developed a teachable anthology that explores the Latino cultural contributions to the Midwest.

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Jon Garfinkel

Jon Garfinkel

Dare to
Flip Classrooms

We learn best when we learn by doing—Garfinkel’s classroom models the business world.

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Michael Gibisser

Michael Gibisser

Dare to
Stretch Filmmaking

Mike Gibisser’s work as a filmmaker and artist draw together divergent subjects or time periods.

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Paul Gilbert

Paul Gilbert

Dare to
End Alcoholism

Paul Gilbert conducts research to understand and address alcohol-related disparities.

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Donald Gurnett

Donald Gurnett

Dare to
Explore Space

Don Gurnett’s unpretentious Midwestern demeanor masks his legendary contributions to space exploration.

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Michael Henry

Michael Henry

Dare to
Detect Cancer 

Research breakthroughs discovered in Michael Henry’s lab in 2012 have the potential for new methods for cancer diagnosis and treatment.

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Herb Hovenkamp

Herb Hovenkamp

Dare to
Define Antitrust

Hovenkamp is one of the most widely cited antitrust scholars.

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Brandi Janssen

Brandi Janssen

Dare to
Sustain Agriculture

As a trained anthropologist, Janssen takes a broad approach to farming safety, health and sustainability.

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Amy Lee

Amy Lee

Dare to
Identify Pathways

Amy Lee studies voltage-gated calcium channels and their roles in the nervous and cardiovascular systems.

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Julia Leonard

Julia Leonard

Dare to
Reimagine Books

For Julia Leonard, the book in its entirety, both content and physical form, is a subject for historical research and a form in which to make art.

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Xi Ma

Xi Ma

Dare to
Bridge Barriers

Building community starts with knowing your neighbor’s name.

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Alan MacVey

Alan MacVey

Dare to
Be Creative

MacVey is a fellow in the College of Fellows of the American Theatre and Past President of the National Association of Schools of Theatre.

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Daniel McGehee

Daniel McGehee

Dare to
Improve Vehicle Safety

Daniel McGehee has been obsessed with car crashes for over 20 years.

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Karla McGregor

Karla McGregor

Dare to
Liberate Language

McGregor researches how people with developmental language disorders learn, remember, and use words.

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Ana Merino

Ana Merino

Dare to
Promote Poetry

Blending cultures allows Ana Merino to sing the song of her native Spain with Americana as the harmony in both poetry and in literature.

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Kristy Nabhan-Warren

Kristy Nabhan-Warren

Dare to
Teach Empathy

Broadly Kristy Nabhan-Warren’s research looks at what American Catholics and Protestants share in common.

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Kumar Narayanan

Kumar Narayanan

Dare to
Map the Brain

Kumar Narayanan is working to map the circuitry of the brain to better understand Parkinson’s disease.

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Edith Parker

Edith Parker

Dare to
Boost Health

Edith Parker’s research focuses on the design, implementation, and evaluation of community health promotion interventions.

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Eli Perencevich

Eli Perencevich

Dare to
Make Hospitals Safer

Infectious disease physician Eli Perencevich to prevent and treat hospital-acquired infections.

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Jason Rantanen

Jason Rantanen

Dare to
Shape Law

Jason Rantanen’s scholarship has moved patent law forward in innovative ways.

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Kelli Ryckman

Kelli Ryckman

Dare to
Prevent Prematurity

Kelli Ryckman and colleagues found a reliable metabolic profile for estimating an infant’s gestational age using only a drop of blood.

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Donna Santillan

Donna Santillan

Dare to
Fight Preeclampsia

Donna Santillan and her research collaborators discovered a biomarker that serves as an early warning flag for preeclampsia.

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Renita Schmidt

Renita Schmidt

Dare to
Inspire Literacy

Renita Schmidt and her collaborators have been rethinking the definition of what it means to be a “strong girl.”

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Jerry Schnoor

Jerry Schnoor

Dare to
Protect the Environment

Jerry Schnoor has cultivated evidence-based scholarship to equip decision makers with unbiased environmental solutions.

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Sarah Seo

Sarah Seo

Dare to
Decode Jurisprudence 

Sarah Seo examines the history of the automobile to explain the evolution of jurisprudence and the meaning of freedom.

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Charles Stanier

Charles Stanier

Dare to
Clear the Air

Charles Stanier is leading a grassroots effort to improve community health and attract increased economic development.

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Fatima Toor

Fatima Toor

Dare to
Catch Cancer

Early cancer detection is critical for survival. With Toor’s device, a simple blood test will function as a liquid biopsy.

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Sarah Vigmostad

Sarah Vigmostad

Dare to
Personalize Treatment

Using advanced computational tools Vigmostad equips patients and providers to make better decisions.

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Marcia Ward

Marcia Ward

Dare to
Advance Telehealth

Marcia Ward has devoted her career to health services research, especially rural healthcare delivery and health outcomes.

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Jessica Welburn

Jessica Welburn

Dare to
Investigate Inequality

Jessica Welburn’s research explores the dynamics of racial inequality and urban inequality in the post-Civil Rights Era.

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Catherine Welch

Catherine Welch

Dare to
Measure Comprehension

Cathy Welch developed the next generation of Iowa Assessments to replace the classic K-12 test.

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Adrien Wing

Adrien Wing

Dare to
Promote Rights

Wing invests her great experiential and academic knowledge in the next generation of justice advocates.

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Joseph Yockey

Joseph Yockey

Dare to
Incorporate Conscience 

Joseph Yockey explores unique ways in which laws can encourage social enterprises to develop and flourish.

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Kang Zhao

Kang Zhao

Dare to
Predict the Unknown

Diving deeply into data, Zhao has unlocked new insights that can help Hollywood investors predict the profitability of movies.

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