Milken department chair named dean of Tulane public health school

A professor and department chair in the Milken Institute School of Public Health was named dean of Tulane University’s School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine Tuesday.

Thomas LaVeist, a professor and chair of the health and policy management department, will serve as dean and presidential chair in health equity, making him the first to hold one of Tulane’s newly endowed presidential chair positions. LaVeist will take over the position July 1.

“Thomas LaVeist is the perfect choice to lead Tulane’s School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine,” Tulane University President Mike Fitts said in a release. “He is a recognized leader in the type of interdisciplinary, boundary-crossing research that is a hallmark of some of the most exciting work at Tulane.”

Jane Hyatt Thorpe, an associate professor and vice chair of academic affairs in the department of health policy and management, has been appointed interim department chair effective July 1.

After coming to GW in 2016, LaVeist established the Health Policy Research Scholars Program which helps doctoral students from communities that are traditionally underrepresented in doctoral programs and policy development. He received a $4.1 million grant to fund this program.

Prior to his time at GW, LaVeist spent 25 years at Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, where he was a professor and director of The Hopkins Center for Health Disparities Solutions.

LaVeist has published more than 100 articles in scientific journals. He also served as the executive producer of the documentary “The Skin You’re In,” exploring the health disparities between white and black Americans.

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