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August 23, 2023

Vlad V. Simianu, MD, MPH, Appointed as Medical Director of Benaroya Research Institute’s Clinical Research Program

We are excited to share that Virginia Mason Franciscan Health’s Vlad V. Simianu, MD, MPH, has recently been appointed as medical director of Benaroya Research Institute’s Clinical Research Program.

Val Simianu

Since 2018, Dr. Simianu has been a colon and rectal surgeon at Virginia Mason Medical Center, having also conducted research at VMMC since this time. He also serves as medical director for colon and rectal disorders within VMFH’s Center for Digestive Health and is a lead investigator and surgeon for several local and national studies focused on colorectal care.

In his new role, Dr. Simianu will be leading efforts to build and advocate for infrastructure supporting the culture of research at VMMC. Much of this work will be done in collaboration with BRI Executive Director and Chief Operating Officer Margaret McCormick, PhD, who also serves as vice president of research at VMMC; VMFH Chief Academic Officer Ryan Pong, MD; and leadership within BRI’s Clinical Research Program.

"Dr. Simianu has a tremendous record of both conducting and promoting research at VMMC. I look forward to the renewed energy and collaborative spirit he will bring to our research community as well as the mentorship he will provide to clinicians who are new to research,” says Dr. McCormick.

Dr. Pong adds that Dr. Simianu is a “champion for our patients, as demonstrated by his dedication to research and collaboration across disciplines.”

Other responsibilities that Dr. Simianu will hold include promoting clinical research engagement among medical staff at VMMC through research symposiums and open forums, as well as teaching sessions supporting new investigators; co-chairing the Wilske Clinical and Translational Research Committee alongside BRI Director for Translational Immunology Karen Cerosaletti, PhD — notably, some of Dr. Simianu’s initial work was supported by a Wilske General Chair Award; and assuring that VMMC provider-led research is conducted in accordance with established clinical research guidelines.

In undertaking his new responsibilities, Dr. Simianu states that he hopes to unite VMMC through research and innovation — and, in particular, embolden and support young faculty, trainees and advanced practice providers in their research pursuits.

Dr. Simianu earned his Doctor of Medicine from Indiana University in 2010. He went on to earn his Master of Public Health from the University of Washington in 2015 and complete a general surgery residency at the University of Washington in 2017. In 2018, he completed a colon and rectal surgery fellowship at the University of Minnesota.

In his free time, Dr. Simianu enjoys spending time outdoors with his wife and daughter.

Visit our Clinical Research at VMMC page to learn more about BRI’s clinical research program, including opportunities to collaborate with our team or join a research study. Interested individuals may also contact or (206) 342-6915 for more information.