I am humbled and honored to join the talented faculty, staff, and students of the University of Utah as I take on the role as chair of the Department of Biomedical Informatics. I am very excited for this new opportunity to work side-by-side with such outstanding faculty members to facilitate our students’ work and studies, to serve, and, at times, to mentor them.
I have spent the last fourteen years at the University of Arizona, University of Illinois at Chicago, and the University of Chicago, where I served as a founding leader of new biomedical informatics research, education, and service centers and institutes. I received my BMI training as a science fellow at Columbia University between 1998 and 2001, where I also became a junior clinician-scientist faculty of the Departments of Medicine and of Biomedical Informatics. In a fortunate turn of events, Dr. Paul Clayton – former UU DBMI faculty - was the Department chair that welcomed me as a Fellow, and he impressed me with his transformative vision, impact on the New York Presbyterian Medical System, and genuine consideration for his colleagues and students. His wise leadership inspired me, and I hope that I can, in turn, motivate the next generation of faculty, staff, and students with the same kind of wisdom and work ethic he and others shared with me.
My intent is to accelerate the success of our mission, set additional synergistic and forward-looking goals that promote a legitimate sense of shared purpose, and produce impactful accomplishments when realized. With this strategic canvas in mind, over the next several weeks, my priority will be to listen and learn from each of you. I want to increase my understanding of the department, including its challenges and opportunities. The plan is to leverage both existing and new assets to empower our Vice Chairs, faculty, staff, and students. We have great strengths, and we need to build on these, as well as build new ones that synergize and further accelerate our success as a leading institution in biomedical informatics.
Meanwhile, please do not hesitate to reach out to me in the coming months; my door is always open (or should I say Zoom these days?). I look forward to not only listening and learning from you but working closely with every member of this department to plan, develop, and execute our strategic canvas and plan to succeed together.