Tonia McCarley

Tonia McCarley has been part of the CBiRC leadership team since the center’s official organization in 2008.  She was a co-investigator/key person on the National Science Foundation (NSF) Engineering Research Center (ERC) award (#EEC0813570) that created the center and served as its one and only Administrative Director from inception through closeout (2008-2019). When CBiRC graduated from NSF ERC funding, she moved into the role of Research Administrator/Chief Administrative and Fiscal Officer.

Primary Responsibilities

  • Research administration (proposal development; award administration; financial accounting and reporting; and project management)
  • Center operations (budget, event, facilities, human resources, and information management)
  • Internal funding/grant programs (e.g., Biobased Products Platform, Biosciences Initiative)


Tonia received a B.S. in Economics in 1989 and a B.S. in Fisheries & Wildlife Biology in 1992, both from Iowa State University.  Prior to her work at CBiRC, she was a program coordinator for the Office of Biorenewables Programs (OBP) at ISU.  In this role, she helped the OBP grow and manage its portfolio of sponsored funding and eventually transition into the Bioeconomy Institute (BEI).