Veteran Government and Technology Policy Director Appointed as AVP for Research
Nick Viggiani, who has served as Congressman Paul Tonko’s director of district projects since 2009, has joined Rensselaer as assistant vice president for research.
A veteran of numerous successful roles in government and business, Viggiani will work with Rensselaer Vice President for Research Francine Berman to expand the impact of Rensselaer research, and to deepen Rensselaer’s research partnerships with state and federal research agencies and with corporations and foundations. He will work closely with Rensselaer faculty and students to both build and deepen partnerships for innovation and discovery between academia, the public sector, and the private sector.
Under Berman’s direction, Rensselaer currently receives close to $90 million in research grants annually, from federal and state government agencies, and from other sources.
“As we look to help Rensselaer’s outstanding researchers successfully compete for the funding critical to explore innovative new approaches and create new discoveries, Nick will be a great addition to the Office of Research team,” Berman said. “He has a proven track record of developing and managing strategic partnerships and forging relationships between academia, government, and industry.”
While working on the Congressman Tonko team since 2009, Viggiani led efforts related to the Congressman’s “Innovation Economy” agenda, facilitating successful meetings and forums where entrepreneurs, technology developers, manufacturers, and developers worked together on policies to foster innovation in upstate New York. He also worked closely with federal and state agencies, on Tonko’s behalf, to help direct federal funding to projects related to technology, energy, research and development, defense, and higher education.
Prior to working with Tonko, Viggiani served as director of strategic partnerships with the Center for Economic Growth in Albany. Previous assignments include: senior team leader and policy analyst for the U.S. Department of Justice; police officer and investigator with the Prince George’s County, Maryland, police department; and legislative assistant for former U.S. Congressman Michael McNulty.