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Search Committee: Dean of the School of Dental Medicine

Published November 12, 2015

Dear UB community,

We are pleased to report that the search for the next dean of the School of Dental Medicine is now underway. Dr. Jean Wactawski-Wende, dean of the School of Public Health and Health Professions, has accepted our invitation to serve as chair of the search committee. Under the leadership of Dean Wactawski-Wende, and with the support of the search committee, we have every confidence that our search for the next dean of the School of Dental Medicine will be a great success.

The search committee membership includes faculty members and a student from the School of Dental Medicine, as well as other faculty and community members with professional interests and expertise relevant to Dental Medicine. We are grateful to the members of the search committee for their willingness to assist UB in recruiting an outstanding individual for this important university leadership position. In addition to Dean Wactawski-Wende, members of the search committee include:

  • Nancy Campbell-Heider, Associate Professor and Chair, Family, Community, & Health Systems Sciences, School of Nursing
  • John Canty, Jr., SUNY Distinguished Professor, Albert and Elizabeth Rekate Professor and Chief, Division of Cardiovascular Medicine, Jacobs School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences
  • Sebastian Ciancio, SUNY Distinguished Service Professor and Chair, Periodontics and Endodontics, School of Dental Medicine
  • Luis Colón, A. Conger Goodyear Professor of Chemistry, Associate Dean for Graduate and Postdoctoral Education, College of Arts and Sciences
  • Paul Creighton, Clinical Associate Professor and Interim Chair, Pediatric and Community Dentistry, School of Dental Medicine
  • Elaine Davis, Professor, Oral Diagnostic Sciences, School of Dental Medicine
  • Richard Hall, Professor and Chair, Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery, School of Dental Medicine
  • Violet Haraszthy, Professor, Restorative Dentistry, School of Dental Medicine
  • James O’Donnell, Dean, School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences
  • Joseph Park, Student, School of Dental Medicine
  • Gabriela Popescu, Professor, Biochemistry, Jacobs School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences
  • Stefan Ruhl, Professor, Oral Biology, School of Dental Medicine
  • Paul Ziarnowski, Clinical Assistant Professor and Associate Chair, Orthodontics, School of Dental Medicine               

We have secured the services of Russell Reynolds Associates to assist the search committee. The principals from the firm who will work on this search are Dr. Ilene Nagel and Dr. Jett Pihakis. Dr. Nagel’s relationship with UB dates back a decade, having assisted the university in senior leadership searches at the cabinet and decanal levels. As head of the higher education practice for Russell Reynolds, Dr. Nagel offers extensive experience identifying and recruiting senior academic and administrative leaders to UB and many other AAU universities. Dr. Pihakis, who is an associate in the firm’s education, diversity and not-for-profit practices, has served on UB’s recent Dean for the School of Public Health and Health Professions search as well as several searches for chairs within the Jacobs School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences.

The search committee and search firm will begin their work this November and continue throughout most of the academic year. We expect the search to conclude in the spring semester with the new dean in place before the start of the 2016-17 academic year. Throughout the coming months, Dean Wactawski-Wende will update the university community regarding the committee’s progress. Information will also be available on the search website -



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

Michael E. Cain

Vice President for Health Sciences and Dean of the Jacobs School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences