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Strategic thinker to lead national research infrastructure platforms


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Dr Nxomani successfully led the transformation of the National Zoological Gardens of South Africa from a classical zoo to claim its place as a credible national research facility

SAEON welcomes the appointment of Dr Clifford Nxomani as NRF Deputy Chief Executive Officer: National Research Infrastructure Platforms on 1 October 2017.

“Dr Nxomani is an astute and long-serving science manager who will succeed in narrowing the gap between SAEON and our principals at higher levels,” says Johan Pauw, Managing Director of SAEON. “He is well-suited for the position due to his experience in research infrastructure development and management and we are looking forward to his contribution to ensure a sustainable growth trajectory for SAEON.”

Dr Nxomani brings a wealth of research management experience to this new portfolio, having spent 24 years in the academic, research and scientific environment, of which 20 years was spent at the National Research Foundation (NRF) and South African Medical Research Council. He is a strategic and conceptual thinker with well-developed organisational leadership and management skills.

As Managing Director of the National Zoological Gardens of South Africa (NZG) over the last ten years, he provided executive leadership to a complex and multi-faceted business unit with over 300 staff members. He successfully led the transformation of the NZG from a classical zoo to a research-active and ultimately to a research-intensive entity to claim its place as a credible national research facility. A key strategy followed in the transformation process was the establishment of research and technology platforms to underpin the research programmes and activities of the organisation, through the acquisition of state-of-the-art research equipment and the recruitment of suitably skilled staff members.

Dr Nxomani holds a doctoral qualification in molecular genetics from Rhodes University, obtained through research conducted while working at the South African Institute for Aquatic Biodiversity (SAIAB), another National Research Facility of the NRF.

SAEON congratulates Dr Nxomani on his appointment within the NRF, with full confidence that he will make a difference in this new portfolio and to the South African research community in general.

The article is largely based on a staff announcement issued by the NRF.

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