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September 24, 2014

Dean Mark Taubman named next Medical Center CEO

Appointment begins Jan. 1, 2015

Mark Taubman at podium

Mark Taubman, who has served as dean of the School of Medicine and Dentistry since 2010, will become senior vice president for health sciences and CEO of the Medical Center, beginning Jan. 1, 2015, President Joel Seligman announced this month.

Taubman will succeed Bradford Berk, who announced his plans to transition from those roles at the end of the year to launch the new Rochester Neurorestorative Institute at the Medical Center.

Seligman, Berk and Taubman spoke to faculty, staff and students who assembled in the Flaum Atrium for the announcement.

Seligman praised Taubman as an “unflappable straight shooter,” and “a man of unquestioned honesty and integrity.”

“In his recent five-year review, Mark was praised for his strategic ability with the School of Medicine and Dentistry, his hiring and promotion of outstanding leaders, his implementation of operational plans, his integrity and his ability to engage Medical Center leaders during the post–2008 recession period of financial challenges,” Seligman said.

Berk agreed that Taubman is an ideal leader for the Medical Center.

“As a long-time professional colleague and friend, I’m well aware of Mark’s strengths as a thinker and leader,” Berk said. “I am fortunate to be able to turn the reins over to someone as capable and visionary as Mark Taubman.”

A former chair of medicine, Berk was appointed CEO in July 2006. He suffered a serious spinal cord injury in 2009 that sparked his passion for creating a patient- and family-centered culture within health care and kindled his desire to improve care specifically for those with chronic neurological conditions.

Seligman cited a number of significant accomplishments during Berk’s tenure, including the expansion of Strong Memorial Hospital by more than 80 acute care beds, construction of the Golisano Children’s Hospital now underway, completion of the Saunders Research Building and the flourishing of the Wilmot Cancer Institute. In addition, Berk’s strategic plans have guided the Medical Center in preparing for new delivery and payment models emerging under health care reform.

Seligman also announced that the University’s Board of Trustees had approved a Distinguished University Professorship for Berk, effective upon his return to the faculty.

Ed Hajim ’58, chairman of the Board of Trustees, said the board enthusiastically and unanimously endorsed Berk’s appointment as a Distinguished University Professor.

“His innovative leadership in meeting the challenges of health care reform and his personal courage and determination have been truly inspirational,” Hajim said.

A highly respected leader at the Medical Center, Taubman was appointed dean following a nine-month stint as acting CEO while Berk recovered from his injury.

Taubman is credited with steering the medical school through turbulent financial times, amid nationwide reductions in funding for both research and graduate medical education. He led the creation of the Medical Center’s strategic plan for research that fosters focused, collaborative science.

His education strategic plan gave birth to the inter-professional Institute for Innovative Education, a milestone in efforts to instill in students and trainees the value of teamwork among physicians, nurses, and other members of the care team.

He also recruited new leadership to the University’s Medical Faculty Group and has set in motion major improvements in efficiency, patient-centeredness and collaboration with referring clinicians.

An enthusiastic advocate for the school, Taubman has driven efforts to double the number of professorships, adding 44 endowed scholarships at the school during the University’s Meliora Challenge Campaign.

Taubman expressed appreciation for the support of Berk and Seligman.

“My job is to work with our leaders, faculty and staff to build upon that foundation,” he said. Together, we can take this organization further than any of us can imagine.”

A board-certified cardiologist, Taubman came to the Medical Center as chief of the Cardiology Unit and Paul N. Yu Professor of Medicine in 2003.

As chief, he was the guiding force behind the expansion of cardiac patient care services, faculty recruitment, strengthening treatments for those with heart arrhythmias and heart failure, adding new preventive cardiology programs (such as the women’s heart program), and forging strong regional services.

Taubman became chair of the Department of Medicine and the Charles E. Dewey Professor of Medicine in 2007 and served in that role until being named as dean.

A graduate of the New York University School of Medicine, Taubman interned at Peter Bent Brigham Hospital before completing his residency and cardiology fellowship training at the Brigham & Women’s Hospital.

He held academic appointments at Harvard Medical School, Children’s Hospital Boston, and Mt. Sinai School of Medicine. Prior to being recruited to Rochester, he was director of cardiovascular research at Mt. Sinai.

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