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Published June 23, 2014

To:              University Community 

From:          Charles F. Zukoski
                  Provost and Executive Vice President
                  for Academic Affairs

                  Michael E. Cain
                  Vice President for Health Sciences and
                  Dean, School of Medicine and Biomedical
                  Sciences

Date:           June 23, 2014

Re:              Announcement of Interim Dean of the School of Public Health and                    Health Professions

We are pleased to announce the appointment of Dr. Jean Wactawski-Wende as Interim Dean of the School of Public Health and Health Professions, effective July 1, 2014.  Jean is a Professor and Associate Chair in the Department of Epidemiology and Environmental Health and UB’s Vice Provost for Strategic Initiatives and Research Advancement.

Jean succeeds Dean Lynn T. Kozlowski, who will return to the Community Health and Health Behavior faculty.  Lynn had served as Dean of the School of Public Health and Health Professions since 2007 (see our April 14 memo for more information about Lynn’s accomplishments as dean).

Jean’s appointment is effective through the conclusion of an international search for a permanent dean, which will commence this summer.   

A UB faculty member since 1989 and epidemiologist specializing in women’s health issues, Jean is recognized as one of UB’s top researchers.  She is the principal investigator of UB’s Women’s Health Initiative (WHI) Center, leader of the WHI Northeast Regional Center, and national chair of the WHI Steering Committee.  WHI is the largest study ever undertaken in the US, and was launched by the National Institutes of Health in 1993 to address common causes of disease and death in postmenopausal women.  Jean also has been the principal investigator on dozens of studies including cancer, osteoporosis and periodontal disease in postmenopausal women, and reproductive health issues in younger women.

As Vice Provost, Jean has built tremendous strength in Strategic Initiatives and Research Advancement, making these offices critical units within the Office of the Vice President for Research and Economic Development.  During this period of transition, Strategic Initiatives and Research Advancement will report directly to Alexander Cartwright who will consider how best to sustain the momentum that has developed. 

We are grateful to Jean for her willingness to serve as interim dean during this transitional period.  Her strong research and leadership record will ensure that the School of Public Health and Health Professions will succeed as we are searching for a permanent dean.