Meet the Staff

Click on the name to read a short bio of our personnel.

James A. Guikema - President

Dr. Guikema is the associate vice president for research at Kansas State University and the associate dean of the Graduate School. He received his Bachelor of Arts degree from Calvin College in 1973, with a major in biology, and he then attended the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor. He received his Ph.D. in 1978 from the University of Michigan, in the cellular and developmental biology program of the Biology Department. He worked for three years at the University of Missouri – Columbia as an NIH postdoctoral fellow, and joined the Kansas State University faculty in 1981 as an assistant professor of biology. In 1990, he became the associate director of the NASA Specialized Center of Research and Training in Gravitational Biology at Kansas State University and was the senior associate director of the Division of Biology from 1994 – 1998. In 1998, he became the associate dean of the Graduate School and in 2001 was appointed associate vice president for research.

He has had a research focus on plant cellular biology, studying the assembly and function of the plastids of higher plants. In the leaves of the plant, the plastids take the form of chloroplasts, and his research examined the assembly of the thylakoid membranes which serve as the primary means by which plants harvest light energy. His work centered around the structure and assembly of the proteins of photosystems I and II. In the roots, specifically in the root cells which perceive the gravitational vector, plastids take the form of statocytes. In his work on examining the processes by which plants sense gravity, Dr. Guikema has had numerous experiments aboard the U.S. space shuttle fleet.

Dr. Guikema has been the K-State representative on several state and regional initiatives. For example, he represents K-State as a stakeholder institution to the Kansas City Area Life Sciences Institute, and has been an advocate for a greater K-State presence in the Kansas City area. Further, he is extremely active in various Kansas EPSCoR and EPSCoR-like programs. In the second year of Kansas eligibility within the NSF EPSCoR program, he successfully proposed the purchase of a confocal microscope for state-wide use, to be housed in K-State’s Division of Biology. In the mid 1990’s, he became the K-State representative on the Kansas NASA EPSCoR Executive Committee. During the past 2 years, he has been the interim Kansas Director of the Department of Energy EPSCoR program. In his role as associate vice president for research, he plays a variety of ad hoc roles within the Kansas NSF EPSCoR and the Kansas NIH IDEA programs including providing institutional assistance to PIs proposing to First Award or COBRE programs.


Indira Mohanty - Program Assistant for Technology Transfer

Ms. Mohanty accepted the position of Program Assistant for Technology Transfer in July 2007. She handles aspects of the invention disclosure management and reporting process including receiving disclosures and other patent documents, entering disclosure information into databases, and ensuring that all legal and governmental regulatory intellectual property mandates are met.

She works closely with inventors, licensees and external patent counsel to facilitate correspondence and monitor patent prosecution activities. She also processes materials related to copyright and trademark prosecution.

Ms. Mohanty holds an M.S. degree in physics from Utkal University, India and an M.S. degree in computer science from the University of Colorado, Colorado Springs.

Phone: (785) 532-3916 E-mail:

Tresa Landis - Business Manager

As the Business Manager, Ms. Landis is responsible for financial functions in the office, including invoicing, receipt and disbursement of revenues associated with licenses; invoicing and receipt of reimbursements from licensees; and payments to vendors (law firms, patent agents, etc.) who provide support to the office.

She works closely with licensing personnel to ensure licensee compliance with financial terms of agreements. Ms. Landis also manages information flow between KSURF, its board of directors and administrative committees. In addition, she coordinates the university's annual inventor recognition event.

Ms. Landis received her B.S. degree in accounting from K-State. She joined KSURF in 1993 and has experience in governmental, private, and public accounting.

Phone: (785) 532-3917 E-mail: