Search commences for new dean

A University of Arizona Health Sciences memo announced last month that an advisory committee has been formed to begin the search for a new dean for the College of Pharmacy. In case you missed the announcement in your end-of-the-semester email, it is reprinted here.

Dec. 18, 2015

To:       Faculty, Staff, and Students of the UA College of Pharmacy

From:   Joe G.N. “Skip” Garcia, MD
            Senior Vice President for Health Sciences

Re:       Dean Search Update

I am pleased to announce the formation of an advisory committee that will coordinate efforts in the national search for the next Dean of the College of Pharmacy. The dean search advisory committee will be co-chaired by Drs. Ken Ramos (UA Associate Vice President for Precision Health Sciences) and Jeff Burgess (Associate Dean for Research in the Mel and Enid Zuckerman College of Public Health). Additional search committee members include:

  • Ivo Abraham, Professor of Pharmacy and Director of the HOPE Center
  • Samuel Keim, Professor of Medicine and Head, Department of Emergency Medicine
  • Walter Klimecki, Associate Professor and Interim Head, Department of Pharmacology & Toxicology
  • Andrew Kraft, Professor of Medicine and Director, UA Cancer Center
  • Heidi Mansour, Assistant Professor of Pharmacy Practice & Science
  • Usha Menon, Professor of Nursing and Associate Dean for Research & Global Advances
  • Hanna Phan, Assistant Professor of Pharmacy Practice & Science
  • Philip Schneider, Professor of Pharmacy & Associate Dean for Academic and Professional Affairs
  • Theodore Tong, Professor of Pharmacy & Associate Dean for Pharmacy Administration
  • Todd Vanderah, Professor and Head, Department of Pharmacology
  • Terri Warholak, Associate Professor of Pharmacy Practice & Science
  • Donna Zhang, Professor of Pharmacology & Toxicology


The search committee’s work will begin in January and is anticipated to conclude with the hiring of the new Dean on/around July 1, 2016, commensurate with the start of the University’s next academic year. I am grateful to the members of the search committee for their contributions in support of this critical leadership recruitment effort.

As we initiate the search for the next Dean, it is important to reflect on the many achievements of the College that has resulted in bringing the school into the top echelon of all pharmacy schools nationally. Among just a select few of the College’s accomplishments are the following:

  • For more than 20 years, US News and World Report has ranked the College among the top 10 pharmacy schools in the nation.
  • The College has maintained a top 20 ranking among NIH-funded pharmacy schools over many years.
  • The College has expanded PharmD program enrollment from 80 to 120 per class over the last 10 years, without lowering admissions standards or graduation rates.
  • The College has established robust international training programs that include multiple learning opportunities abroad for PharmD students, faculty exchanges, institutional participation in international educational affiliations (Japan, Thailand, Costa Rica) and Tucson-based postgraduate training programs with Saudi Arabia.
  • The College created the nation’s first university-based, pharmacist-run medication therapy management (MTM) center in 2006. Over the last 10 years, the center has won a national patient care award, a state innovation award, and has emerged as University intellectual-property spin-off company – SinfoníaRx – now the largest provider of MTM services (with over 7 million covered lives) in the country.

It is from this base of strength that we seek a new leader who will continue the positive growth of the College and further solidify our standing as a leader in pharmacy education, practice and research.

During this time of transition for the College, I have been truly impressed by the professionalism demonstrated by the entire College community and for the tremendous show of affection for the College by so many alumni and stakeholder friends. This is a wonderful College of Pharmacy that is certain to attract the highest caliber candidates for the Dean’s leadership post.

I wish to again thank Dr. John Murphy for his continuing service as Interim Dean. John has informed me that he does not wish to be considered for the permanent role but will serve in his Interim capacity through completion of the search process. John’s leadership will be instrumental toward ensuring a smooth transition and continuing progress on several ongoing strategic initiatives. I thank all of you for your support of the search committee and positive contributions to the search process.

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