- Streamlining the faculty retention, tenure and promotion processes to make them as efficient and inclusive as possible for all health sciences faculty
- Expanding the Clinical and Translational Scholar Program to give junior faculty from all health sciences colleges the opportunity to work with outstanding research mentors to develop into principal investigators
- Promoting the U health sciences systemwide efforts at inclusion and diversity in its faculty and academic programs
Byington is ideally suited to serve in her new role, according to Vivian S. Lee, M.D., Ph.D., M.B.A., senior vice president for health sciences.
"Dr. Byington has devoted much of her career to mentoring, and has supported the careers of more than 100 trainees and junior faculty, mostly women and minorities," says Lee, also dean of the School of Medicine and CEO of University of Utah Health Care. "As co-director of the Utah Center for Clinical and Translational Science, she also is committed to providing a strong research infrastructure and training environment for the Health Sciences Center."
She was the recipient of the Gary C. Schoenwolf Mentoring Award in 2011 and the Linda K. Amos award for service to women in 2012. In October, she was awarded an NIH planning grant to develop a national research-mentoring network for those under-represented in medicine, with a goal of increasing the diversity of the biomedical research workforce in the United States.
In addition to her administrative roles, Byington is a pediatrician and works at the Salt Lake Valley Health Department/University of Utah South Main Clinic where she treats minority and underserved women and children. She focuses her research on viral and bacterial infections in infants and children and on improving health services, including public health, through accurate diagnosis.
Her appointment became effective Nov. 1, 2013.