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Stanford Report, January 26, 2000

Search committee for new dean announced


University Provost John Hennessy has announced the members of the committee that will search for a new dean for the School of Medicine to replace Eugene Bauer, MD, who was recently named the university's vice president for the Medical Center.

The 12-member panel will be co-chaired by Stephen Galli, professor and chair of pathology. Other members are: Ann Arvin, MD, professor of pediatrics; Thomas Burdon, MD, assistant professor of cardiothoracic surgery; Patricia Engasser, MD, a physician in private practice and an alumna of the medical school; Marion Henry, a third-year medical student and past president of the Stanford Medical Student Association; Charlotte Jacobs, MD, professor of medicine and director of the Clinical Cancer Center; Susan McConnell, PhD, associate professor of biological sciences; Oscar Salvatierra, MD, professor of surgery; Matthew Scott, PhD, professor of developmental biology; Richard Tsien, PhD, professor of molecular and cellular physiology; and Paul Yock, MD, professor of medicine. Jeff Wachtel, associate provost, will serve as staff member to the committee.

President Casper had asked the provost to appoint the search committee following his announcement in early January that Bauer, who had previously held the jobs of both the vice president and dean, would give up his deanship once his successor was in place. Given the many pressing issues at the Medical Center, particularly in the aftermath of the UCSF Stanford Health Care break-up, Casper requested that the committee make its recommendations within a month after it is constituted.

Members of the school's senate earlier had expressed some concerns about the search process and had asked Casper to consider outside, as well as internal, candidates. Two weeks ago, the senate's steering committee, known as the Committee of Five, met with Ewart Thomas, PhD, professor of psychology and chair of the University Senate's Committee on Committees, who had been asked to help the provost assemble the search committee. The Committee of Five made suggestions for committee members and was reassured by Thomas that committee membership would be balanced, Lorry Frankel, MD, chair of the medical school's Faculty Senate, told senate members Jan. 19.

The provost also wrote a letter to Frankel indicating that while he and Casper believed the search should be an "expeditious" one, the timeline "should not ... cause us to sacrifice the validity of the search." He said he has asked the committee to provide its suggested candidates by April 15. His goal is to have a new dean in place by June's graduation, he said.

"As Provost and co-chair of the search committee, my goal is that the search locate the best possible candidates to lead the medical school," Hennessy said in his letter to Frankel. "From my own experience, I understand how important it is for a Dean to have the strong support of the faculty, and a sound search process is key to ensuring this support." SR