In 2007, the Interdisciplinary Research Building was constructed with quite a bit of shell space for future laboratories. As the Global Health Infectious Disease Research Program and the Center for Drug Discovery and Innovation research programs expanded, we were fortunate to build out much needed laboratory and office space.
For our most recent build out, the Whiting Turner Company was hired to construct our CDDI labs. Christopher Zutes, a returning member of this team, was a fixture as a project manager on a number of previous retrofit activities in the building.
Chris and his team had their work cut out for them – not only meeting complex engineering challenges to provide us with what we have today, but also retrofitting active research laboratories where a speck of dust could compromise years of research – never did we find a speck.
We all found Chris refreshingly friendly, professional, engaged, and committed to a quality of workmanship that we now brag about in our new labs. Chris was quite proud of the work he did for us and apparently talked it up to his fellow Whiting-Turner colleagues as well as his family, and saw this as his contribution to advancing our mission and impacting human health.
Chris tragically passed away last summer, but he will always be remembered as we walk these halls. He left a legacy for future generations of scientists, researchers, students, and public health practitioners. In memory of Chris and his work at the IDRB, an endowment has been established and we encourage others to contribute to this very worthy cause.
The Christopher G. Zutes Hope to Humanity Endowment will support graduate students who are pursuing academic initiatives in infectious disease research at the USF Florida Center of Excellence for Drug Discovery & Innovation. For additional information, contact Mr. Ron Sherman at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Mr. George Zutes with plaque memorializing Christopher Zutes
Story by Matt Rollie, USF Health