Ian Colrain on Abstract geometrical background

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MRIGlobal Names Ian Colrain as President and CEO


Colrain was previously president of SRI Biosciences, where he led strategic planning, business development and research operations. Read the complete story at ContractPharma.com.


Ian M. Colrain, Ph.D. has been named president and chief executive officer of MRIGlobal, effective July 1.

With the appointment, Colrain assumes responsibility of all operations for MRIGlobal, a $110 million non-profit applied scientific research organization working in global health, national security, defense, and energy. MRIGlobal employs about 480 people, including chemists, biologists, engineers, and staff professionals working in multiple US locations and overseas.

Colrain succeeds Thomas M. Sack, who was named president and CEO in 2013, and will be retiring from MRIGlobal at the end of June after more than 40 years with the institute.

Colrain was previously with SRI International (formerly Stanford Research Institute) as president of SRI Biosciences, where he led the strategic planning, business development and research operations for a multidisciplinary team of more than 250 employees with top- and bottom-line responsibility for its $75 million annual operating budget.

“We’re excited to welcome Ian to MRIGlobal. He brings incredible passion, strong business acumen, and a depth of experience to this position,” said David Oliver, chairman of the MRIGlobal Board of Directors. “The past five years have been the most successful in MRIGlobal’s 78-year history. We believe Ian’s leadership will strengthen our ability to continue solving the difficult challenges of our customers and propel the institute to realize even greater success.”

“MRIGlobal is well-positioned financially, technically, and contractually, with the right customers and a tremendous reputation, to expand its market share,” Colrain said. “Coupled with an outstanding team of researchers and support staff, we have an incredible opportunity to build upon recent success and further expand our positive impact globally. I look forward to leading MRIGlobal as we solve the world’s most challenging problems in defense and health.”

In this role, Colrain will also be involved with the Alliance for Sustainable Energy, LLC, which manages more than $550 million in research at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) in Golden, Colo., for the U.S. Department of Energy. NREL is co-managed by MRIGlobal.

In his most recent capacity at SRI International, Colrain’s team engaged in use-inspired basic research, applied translational research, and development and provision of contract research services. Colrain was also responsible for the direction and growth of significant contracts with private pharmaceutical companies and the evaluation of venture and licensing opportunities. He was also vitally involved in the identification and support of new initiatives coming from early career scientists, focusing internal investments and scientific resources on areas aligned to core competencies. His own research career has been in human sleep physiology.

Colrain earned a Bachelor of Science degree in psychology and computer science, and a first class honors and doctoral degree in psychology from the University of Tasmania.

Colrain also serves as Life Sciences Advisor to Airstream Ventures; an external advisory board member to the University of Pittsburgh NIDA Center of Excellence; and in varying capacities on the boards of the Keystone Symposia and Forest Devices Inc.