Helen Weir’s mission to improve the business of translational research

29 March 2021

BDHP Operations Director Helen Weir began her professional career in human resources until a serendipitous role with the University of Queensland’s Brain Institute (QBI) sparked her passion for medical research. “I found it incredibly rewarding to work with smart people dedicated to improving the health and lives of others through their research. Since then, I have never wanted to leave the industry,” Helen said. In her 12 years with QBI, Helen held significant leadership roles, including the Institute Manager (2008-2015) and Deputy Director for Operations (2015-2018). During her time, she significantly contributed to the meteoric growth of the Institute, both in size and success. She oversaw its expansion from 20 researchers to more than 450 staff and students. More recently, Helen was the Director of Faculty Services for the Health Faculty at the Queensland University of Technology. She provided strategic and operational leadership for more than 100 professional and technical staff delivering services to more than 10,000 students and a 500-strong academic community. In 2021, Helen joined BDHP as Operations Director, welcoming the challenge of making the business of translational research easier across the broader industry. She describes her role as tackling all the complex areas in translational research that no one knows how to tackle or has the time to address because they are focused (rightly so) on delivering research outcomes. One of the items on Helen’s agenda is how to improve the way we conduct clinical trials in Queensland. She’s on a mission to improve how we work together across hospitals, universities and research institutes. It requires understanding and balancing the complex interests and operational practices of BDHP’s Partner organisations and creating collaborative and high-performing delivery mechanisms. Helen’s passion for unpacking a problem and solving it extends to her leisure pursuits. When she’s not at work, Helen listens to true crime podcasts and enjoys the detective work involved in cracking a triple homicide.

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