Aileen Dinkjian

Aileen Orlino Dinkjian, MPH

Research Project Manager, Research Development (RD) and Team Building


Ms. Dinkjian is currently the Research Project Manager for the Research Development Core at the SC CTSI.  Ms. Dinkjian works with program leadership to initiate, implement, pilot and assess new program efforts focused on building multidisciplinary research teams, ensuring and evaluating program success and tracking program outcomes.  Ms. Dinkjian leads the Research Development Core in developing objectives and action plans and drives these to completion to systemically build research partnerships across diverse disciplines.

Ms. Dinkjian spearheads the Mock Review program which provides junior investigators and graduate students, who may have limited or no grant-writing experience, with feedback on proposals intended for submission to NIH K-series.  Ms. Dinkjian facilitates the review process between the applicants and reviewers to ensure junior faculty receives adequate and helpful feedback. She also provides management to ongoing pilot funding and team-building efforts, transition new initiatives from start-up to sustainable phase; engage appropriate stakeholders to ensure program success; work to secure research funding and resources; build strategic alliances in support of research programs with industry, foundation, and other agencies; recognize, develop and implement solutions to program-wide, challenges that require general systems and processes; ensure effective implementation of new team-building initiatives including formal efforts in the science of team science across research development.

Ms. Dinkjian is also a member of the CTSA External Reviewer Exchange Consortium, raising opportunities for USC research faculty to serve in a nationwide grant reviewer program.  

Contact Information

Professional Background

Ms. Dinkjian has had 15 years of experience working with and providing support to local, state, and federal governments to write and support community grants, develop improved processes to program management, write and review policies, and leverage an organization's quality assurance through ongoing evaluations. Ms. Dinkjian was also the Research Finance Manager and Regulatory Coordinator for Cedar-Sinai Medical Center’s Division of Rheumatology where she monitored over 30 investigator-initiated, industry-initiated, federal and foundational research studies.   She has worked directly with industry sponsors to negotiated budgets and finalize contracts. Today, Ms. Dinkjian continues this line of work in grants administration by serving as the Research Development and Team Building Administrator and as a Program Administrator for the Keck School of Medicine, Office of the Dean and Research. 

Before Ms. Dinkjian came on board in May 2012, Ms. Dinkjian was a Consultant for Booz Allen Hamilton’s Systems Development (COE) and Technology Capability Team.  She was assigned to provide operational management to the U.S. Department of Justice’s, Nationwide Suspicious Activity Reporting Initiative.  For six years, Ms. Dinkjian has also worked directly with the City of Chino (CA) as a program coordinator for after school programs and spearheaded the first healthy communities’ initiative in California called Healthy Chino. She has also provided strong administrative leadership as a Staff Development Coordinator for the City of Alexandria, Virginia, Department of Mental Health in reviewing policies, creating methodological needs assessments and training evaluations, writing contracts and developing an annual training plan.  While in Virginia, Ms. Dinkjian also coordinated the City of Alexandria’s first 50 Million Pounds Challenge Campaign with the Virginia Department of Health and practiced evidence-based research of social networking and marketing to a community of 140,000 Alexandrians. In more recent years, Ms. Dinkjian has worked for the National Institutes of Justice to support the Office of Justice Programs, Office of Research and Evaluation, in administering important judicial legislation and research.

Ms. Dinkjian has a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science from Cal Poly Pomona and a Masters of Public Health from the George Washington University.  She is currently a doctoral student at the USC Rossier School of Education, Organizational Leadership and Change program.


Community advocacy; public health education; career development training; pomeranians; cooking; coffee; tennis; playing with her two baby toddlers.

NIH Funding Acknowledgment: Important - All publications resulting from the utilization of SC CTSI resources are required to credit the SC CTSI grant by including the NIH funding acknowledgment and must comply with the NIH Public Access Policy.