Dr. Steward is the Founding Director of the Reeve-Irvine Research Center for Spinal Cord Injury at the University of California, Irvine (UCI). He is the Reeve-Irvine Professor of Anatomy and Neurobiology and holds joint appointments in the Departments of Neurobiology and Behavior and Neurosurgery. He was one of the Founding Members of the Independent Citizen’s Oversight Committee, the governing board of the California Institute of Regenerative Medicine (CIRM).
Dr. Steward's research focuses on how nerve cells create and maintain their connections with each other, how these "synapses" are modified by experience and injury, and what genes play a role in nerve cell regeneration, growth and function. A long-standing interest is in the mechanisms of mRNA sorting and transport in neurons, especially the targeting of mRNA to synaptic sites on dendrites.