Two academics from Old Dominion University were recently named to state commissions by Gov. Ralph Northam.

Jeff Tanner, dean of the Strome College of Business, was appointed to the State Racing Commission. That body's role is "to promote, sustain, grow and control a native horse racing industry with pari-mutuel wagering by prescribing regulations and conditions that command and promote excellence and complete honesty and integrity in racing and wagering," according to its website.

Tanner came to ODU in 2015 from Baylor University in Waco, Texas, where he was a marketing professor and founded the Baylor Business Collaboratory. In 2019, he was named to the Inside Business Power List. He holds a Ph.D. in business administration from the University of Georgia and an MBA. and BA in marketing from the University of North Texas.

Bridget Giles, a research assistant professor at ODU's Virginia Modeling, Analysis and Simulation Center (VMASC), was named to the Virginia Data Advisory Commission. That group is charged with "assisting the Office of Data Governance and Analytics to set, plan and prioritize data-sharing performance goals for the commonwealth, review agency accomplishments, and achieve desired performance goals and objectives."

Giles, who also serves as director of special programs for the Hampton Roads Biomedical Research Consortium, graduated from Eastern Virginia Medical School with a Ph.D. in Biomedical Sciences in 2001. After working for more than 10 years in clinical research managing smallpox, influenza and anthrax vaccine trials for the National Institutes of Health, she joined VMASC in 2014.

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