March 12, 2013

Pres. Watts announces Medicine dean search committee

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The University of Alabama at Birmingham has selected the search committee charged with reviewing candidates for the next permanent senior vice president for Medicine and dean of the UAB School of Medicine.

“Our goal with this search is to find the best person to lead the School of Medicine,” said Ray L. Watts, who became UAB’s seventh president in February.

lg sealWatts served as senior vice president for Medicine and dean of the School of Medicine for two and a half years. Anupam Agarwal, M.D., is serving in those roles on an interim basis and will not be a candidate for the permanent position.

“This is a very exciting time to be a leader at UAB and a leader in the field of academic medicine,” Watts said. “Our next senior vice president and dean will have the opportunity to shape medical education and biomedical research – not just on our campus, but around the world. The UAB School of Medicine will also be vital to fueling a knowledge-based economy for Birmingham and Alabama.

“We anticipate attracting a very talented pool of applicants from across the country,” Watts said.

Watts has charged the search committee with an aggressive timeline for selecting a finalist. “We want to conclude our search in six to nine months,” he said.

The senior vice president for Medicine and dean of the School of Medicine reports to the president of UAB and serves on a three-member “joint operating leadership” team for UAB Medicine, the brand for all clinical medical operations at UAB, with the Chief Executive Officer of the UAB Health System, Will Ferniany, Ph.D., and the president of the Health Services Foundation, who currently is James Bonner, M.D., the chair of Radiation Oncology.

The School of Medicine has more than 1,100 faculty members, 3,000 staff employees, 879 medical students and 814 medical residents. It has three regional campuses – in Tuscaloosa, Huntsville and Montgomery – where students spend their third and fourth years. UAB attracts more than $400 million annually in external research funding and ranks consistently in the top 25 nationally in funding from the National Institutes of Health, with more than $217 million going to the School of Medicine.