Arthur R. (Art) NorrisProject Consultant
After college, Art began work in 1966 as an investigator for the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in Atlanta. He moved with the FDA to Washington, D.C. in 1968 through a rotating management training program then worked in planning, information management and management analysis. From 1976 to 1980, he worked as a liaison between Health, Education and Welfare Secretary Joseph Califano’s office and the health agencies of the Public Health Service, National Institute of Health, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and FDA.
He came to Arkansas as the associate director for management, (COO in today’s terminology) of the National Center for Toxicological Research (NCTR) and then became its deputy director in 1985. He also served as acting director for a two-year period.
After retiring from NCTR in 1998, Art graduated from seminary and became a Methodist pastor for six years. He then became a consultant to the Economic Development Alliance of Jefferson County, Arkansas, working to optimize the value of NCTR though the development of 1,500 acres of land adjacent, the Bioplex.
Art now works as a consultant to Arkansas Research Alliance and continues working with the Jefferson County Alliance. He was the principal author of a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between the FDA and the State of Arkansas in 2011. The agreement calls for collaborative efforts in research in the safety of nanomaterials, graduate programs in regulatory science, development of a stronger bioinformatics capability and commercialization of technology. Art was then appointed to a working group assigned the responsibility of overseeing the implementation of the MOU. In addition, Art helped develop a Partnership Intermediary Agreement, FDA’s first, with ARA. Its purpose is to foster commercialization of technology developed at NCTR.
While living in Jefferson County, Art chaired the science committee of the Southeast Arkansas Arts and Sciences Center, chaired the Foundation Fund Board of the University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff, and worked closely with the Industrial Foundation, the Chamber of Commerce and civic organizations. He began programs at NCTR to provide summer jobs for high school science teachers as well as students. Nationally he has been a member of the executive committee of the Federal Laboratory Consortium and coordinated activities in the mid-continent region of that Consortium.