Valerie Gray Hardcastle joined Northern Kentucky University in June 2018 as the St. Elizabeth Healthcare Executive Director of the Institute for Health Innovation and Vice President for Health Innovation. As the ED/VP, she advocates on behalf of the region, serves as a thought-leader around health policy, pursues an aggressive externally funded research program, promotes the transdisciplinary work of health innovation across the institution, and attracts talent to NKU and the region in the healthcare space.

Previously, she served as the Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences and then as the Academic Director of the Weaver Institute for Law and Psychiatry at the University of Cincinnati.   Before coming to Cincinnati, Hardcastle served as Associate Dean of the College of Liberal Arts and Human Sciences at Virginia Tech as well as Head of the Department of Science and Technology in Society and Director of the Graduate Program in Science and Technology Studies at Virginia Tech. 

An internationally recognized scholar, Dr. Hardcastle is the author of five books and over 170 articles. She received an interdisciplinary Ph.D. in cognitive science and philosophy from the University of California, San Diego, a master’s degree in philosophy from the University of Houston, and a bachelor’s degree with a double major in philosophy and political science from the University of California, Berkeley.

She and her husband Jim Benton live on a farm in southern Campbell County, and she has three grown children.