Executive Director


Dr. David Canter, a physician, scientist and respected leader who once led the Pfizer pharmaceutical research operation in Ann Arbor, is the executive director of the University of Michigan North Campus Research Complex (NCRC). In his role, Dr. Canter has the responsibility for mapping, developing and implementing the University of Michigan's strategy to make the most of the site's 28 buildings and dozens of acres of open land.

After nearly 25 years in pharmaceutical research and leadership at Pfizer as a senior vice president of Global Research and Development, Dr. Canter became director of the Healthcare Research Initiative at the William Davidson Institute, a non-profit research and educational institute at the University of Michigan. Since 2008, he has led an effort to test business-based approaches to improving health care delivery in developing nations.

A native of England, Dr. Canter received his undergraduate degree from Cambridge University and his medical degree from the Liverpool University Medical School. He is a Fellow of the Royal College of Surgeons. After several years with the National Health Service, he joined Warner Lambert/Parke-Davis in 1984. Except for his first two years with the company in England, and three years with Pfizer in Paris in the late 1990s, he has spent his entire career in Ann Arbor.

He has served on the boards of many local and regional organizations, from the Michigan Life Sciences Corridor Committee to the University Musical Society, and is well connected to the region's business and academic community. These connections are vital to his role as executive director of NCRC, which has many stakeholders across the University and in the city, region and state.

In December 2012, the University’s Board of Regents approved the reappointment of David Canter as senior associate vice president and executive director of the North Campus Research Complex through July 2016.