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Director

Dr. Hastings Ozwara (PhD) is the current Director  of the Institute of Primate Research.

 

 


Born 48 years ago in Migori, South Western Kenya, and Dr. Hastings Ozwara studied BSc in Zoology (1988 to 1991) and MSc in Parasitology (1991-1994) from the University of Nairobi in Kenya.  He finished his PhD in 2003 to graduate at Leiden University in The Netherlands in 2005. His PhD research was carried out on genetic modification/Transfection of malaria parasites at the Biomedical Primate Research Center, under supervision of Dr Alan Thomas and Dr Clemens Kocken.  He then undertook postdoctoral research at the Institute of Primate Research with funding from the Dutch foundation for Tropical research (WOTRO). He has since expanded his research interests to include developing a baboon model of malaria research, natural products research and DNA barcoding of endangered wildlife species of Kenya. He started the malaria research program at IPR and led it up to the current status where it is one of the leading research programs at the institute. His research outputs currently include supervision of over 20 students at MSc and PhD levels and over 30 publications in international peer-reviewed journals. With his collaborators, IPR has received funding for research from institutions such as NIH, WHO, World Bank, WOTRO, USAID, NCST, Kenya Government etc. His current expertise include transfection technology for malaria parasites, placental malaria, student and staff mentorship, training in effective project planning monitoring and evaluation in health research, proposal review with National Commission for Science and Technology, public policy development, natural products value chain, quality management system (ISO 9001), research methods, church leadership and management of public secondary schools.

 

 


 The Director has a vast Experience in Research and brings this to the Institute merging it with remarkable leadership skills. He has a great vision for the Institute. He would wish to be a leader and not a manager who understands the business of IPR and also have good people skills. He wishes by the end of his term period that IPR will be an autonomous basic and biomedical research center that will be AAALAC accredited, have new products, new infrastructure, functional colony breeding facility, improved implementation of public programs and a well-developed human resource capacity that supports training and short courses among other things.

 

 


 He values ethics, integrity, professionalism, planning, individual responsibility and result oriented persons for the betterment of IPR. His most fears are how IPR can realize its full potential and become financially sustainable because it has well trained staff, good infrastructure, conducive environment and good will that it requires to take off and influence mankind.  He however acknowledges that there are challenges that require synergy from all staff to be solved. These challenges include: AAALAC accreditation that IPR is working towards, IPR’s legal status, upgrade of laboratory equipment’s and financial sustainability. He believes that IPR has a competitive advantage, being one of its kinds in Africa carrying out biomedical research on non- human primates and its exemplars could do much better if only they get good mentorship, convert challenges into opportunities and accept to get their hands dirty. He dislikes the culture of complaints without finding time to look for solutions to the existing problems.

 

 


He has a commitment to giving the IPR directorship its best and staff inspiration. He would measure success by having a quantitative work plan, projects completion on time and make progress in solving challenges.

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