Matt Sanford

Executive Director

Matt Sanford oversees all aspects of MURR, including research and education programs, reactor operations, and products and services.  Sanford provides leadership to a diverse workforce in a highly technical and regulated environment, promotes the principles of maintaining a healthy nuclear safety culture and drives continuous improvement of safety, compliance, reliability and quality in all of MURR’s systems.

During Sanford’s 30+ year career at MURR, he has served in a variety of roles in support of MU’s mission of research, service, and economic development.  Highlights include:

  • Expanding MURR’s FDA-regulated manufacturing programs, enabling the supply of life-saving active pharmaceutical ingredients for millions of patients.
  • Innovating and growing MURR’s products & services to serve a worldwide research and industrial community, supporting a range of nuclear sciences and radioisotope production and analytical need.
  • Creating industry-leading nuclear workforce career progression models focused on the development of skills and sustained career advancement.
  • Partnering with industry to develop isotope technology for medical, scientific, and industrial use.
  • Maximizing the potential of nuclear technology by partnering with University of Missouri divisions including the Molecular Imaging and Theranostics Center (MITC), The NextGen Precision Health Initiative, University of Missouri Healthcare, the College of Veterinary Medicine, and private partners.
  • Serving on the leadership team for the NextGen MURR reactor initiative.

Professional and academic background

Sanford is a University of Missouri graduate and began work at MURR in 1989.   He served as Associate Director of MURR from 2010-2023.  He was appointed as the MURR Interim Executive Director from 2017-2018 and again in November 2022 before being named MURR Executive Director in July 2023.

Sanford is a graduate of the President’s Academic Leadership Institute, served as a delegate to the International Atomic Energy Agency of the United Nations, and serves on the Board of Directors of the Council on Radionuclides and Radiopharmaceuticals, Inc.