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MUSC and Zucker Institute name new CEO

Todd Headley

After a national search process, the Medical University of South Carolina (MUSC) and the Zucker Institute for Innovation Commercialization (ZI) announced today that Todd Headley has been named as new chief executive officer for ZI effective immediately. 

“As the Zucker Institute reorganization continues to support innovative and inventive endeavors of MUSC employees and students, we believe that Todd is the absolute right leader to guide growth and leadership,” said Jesse Goodwin, Ph.D., chief innovation officer at MUSC and chair of the board of directors for ZI. “Our board and team believe Todd will help firmly lay the foundation for expanded growth and guidance.” 

Headley has more than 20 years of licensing, business development and startup formation experience, including most recently serving as executive vice president of corporate development at Statera Biopharma, where he worked closely with senior leadership to evaluate and manage strategic growth programs. He previously served as president of CSU Ventures and vice president of the Colorado State University Research Foundation, where he led a team working in intellectual property management, licensing and university startups and was charged with deriving impact and value from over $450 million in annual research expenditures at Colorado State University. Additionally, he is well-versed in technology transfer offices in the life sciences industry and academic research institutions, having worked in technology transfer offices at the University of Nebraska Medical Center and Iowa State University. 

“I could not be more honored to lead this amazing institute and have the opportunity to work closely with this team,” said Headley. “I am extremely optimistic for the future of this amazing organization and thankful for the support from MUSC leadership in continuing to grow innovation across this state. Their guidance gives a clear mission focused on innovative excellence to help grow inventors and entrepreneurship in South Carolina.”

The Zucker Institute acts as a component of the Office of Innovation at MUSC as it looks to continue to build a nationally recognized culture of innovation. Reorganized in 2022 from the Zucker Institute for Applied Neuroscience (ZIAN) and MUSC Foundation for Research Development (FRD), the group is tasked with translating MUSC’s intellectual property-backed scholarly research and clinical and education efforts into products used beyond MUSC.

“We are excited to have Todd join the Zucker Institute,” said MUSC President David J. Cole, M.D., FACS. “His vast experience in technology transfer offices and life science businesses will be invaluable as we continue to facilitate real-world, beneficial impact for those that we serve. I look forward to working with him in his new role along with the ZI board as we continue to foster a culture of innovation throughout South Carolina.”


About MUSC  

Founded in 1824 in Charleston, MUSC is the state’s only comprehensive academic health system, with a unique mission to preserve and optimize human life in South Carolina through education, research, and patient care. Each year, MUSC educates more than 3,000 students in six colleges – Dental Medicine, Graduate Studies, Health Professions, Medicine, Nursing, and Pharmacy – and trains more than 850 residents and fellows in its health system. MUSC brought in more than $297.8 million in research funds in the fiscal year 2022, leading the state overall in research funding. For information on academic programs, visit

As the health care system of the Medical University of South Carolina, MUSC Health is dedicated to delivering the highest-quality and safest patient care while educating and training generations of outstanding health care providers and leaders to serve the people of South Carolina and beyond. Patient care is provided at 14 hospitals with approximately 2,500 beds and five additional hospital locations in development; more than 350 telehealth sites, with connectivity to patients’ homes; and nearly 750 care locations situated in all regions of South Carolina. In 2022, for the eighth consecutive year, U.S. News & World Report named MUSC Health the No. 1 hospital in South Carolina. To learn more about clinical patient services, visit

MUSC and its affiliates have collective annual budgets totaling $5.1 billion. The nearly 25,000 MUSC team members include a world-class faculty, physicians, specialty providers, scientists, students, affiliates and care team members who deliver and support groundbreaking education, research and patient care.

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Tamia Sumpter

Tamia is a driven senior undergraduate Bioengineering student currently enrolled at Clemson University. With a strong foundation in her field, she has honed her skills through hands-on experience in research and development at Eli Lilly & Company. During her time in the ADME department, Tamia contributed significantly by working on siRNAs and their applications in finding In Vitro-In Vivo Correlation (IVIVC). Looking ahead, Tamia has set her sights on a promising career in law. She aspires to specialize in Intellectual Property Law, with a particular focus on serving as in-house counsel for leading medical device or pharmaceutical companies. Her enthusiasm for this role is palpable as she prepares to embark on her legal journey! She is also a proud member of the Omicron Phi chapter of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc., PEER Mentor for Clemson PEER/WiSE, and currently serves as the President of Clemson Bioengineering Organization (CBO). With her unique blend of scientific knowledge and legal interests, Tamia is poised to make a meaningful impact in the healthcare and life sciences industries.