Dean's Weekly Message

June 27, 2016


Dear colleague: 

At Tuesday’s meeting of the Executive Committee of the School of Medicine, Senior Associate Dean for Academic Affairs Peter Buttrick, MD, urged users of research space to make sure information is up to date and accurate in WebSpace. As Peter noted, we have many talented recruits who want to join us on the Anschutz Medical Campus, so we need to make sure our inventory of space accurately reflects actual usage. That’s because by objective measures we have sufficient space for our needs. It is now our job to make sure we are using it as efficiently as possible. I made clear that we have an expectation that users will engage in the process and that it is in the users’ best interests to participate. By the end of June, everyone should have his/her inventories updated in WebSpace and should have taken ownership of space management so that we can have an appropriate reallocation plan in place by Labor Day. 

Also Tuesday, the Executive Committee unanimously approved updates to the rules of the School of Medicine. The Faculty Senate voted in favor of the changes the week before. Included in the updates are changes necessary to address requirements for the upcoming site visit by our accrediting agency, the Liaison Committee on Medical Education (LCME). For example, the rules will now explicitly state that the School’s Admissions Committee has full and final authority to select members of the entering class of medical students and that the Dean does not participate in admissions decisions. While that has been the longstanding practice of the School of Medicine, the LCME requires that School rules explicitly state such policies. 

Children’s Hospital Colorado was ranked last week among the top 10 children’s hospitals in the country in the U.S. News & World Report annual listings. Children’s has consistently been ranked on the publication’s Best Children’s Hospital Honor Roll since the listings were established in 1993. Of the 183 pediatric hospitals invited to participate in this year’s survey, only 11 children’s centers nationwide qualified for the Honor Roll. The Honor Roll recognizes the centers that excel in at least three of the 10 Best Children’s Hospital specialties. Children’s Colorado ranked in all 10 pediatric specialty areas and is the only ranked children’s hospital in the multi-state region. 

The University of Colorado recently announced that it has awarded the 2015-2016 Chase Faculty Community Service Award to Jeffrey Druck, MD, associate professor of emergency medicine, for his volunteer work with Wapiyapi, which is a camp for children who have been diagnosed with cancer and for their brothers and sisters. Jeff serves as president of the board and he has been associated with the program since 2000 while he worked as a resident in the Denver Health emergency medicine program. Jeff’s contributions continue a long-standing relationship between the School of Medicine and Wapiyapi, which was established in 1998 by medical students. Congratulations Jeff. 

Richard D. Zane, MD, has been named chief innovation officer for UCHealth. The new responsibilities were announced last Thursday by Liz Concordia, president and CEO of UCHealth. In this role, Rich will be responsible for overseeing and managing system-wide process improvement, implementing novel technology across the system, and developing new technology in partnership with external and internal innovators. Rich will work closely with clinical and operational leadership across the system, as well as with the University of Colorado School of Medicine and the University of Colorado. Rich will continue in his current roles as UCHealth’s executive director of emergency services and chair of the School’s Department of Emergency Medicine. 

Jena Hausmann, president and CEO of Children’s Hospital Colorado, announced last week that the hospital is re-organizing physician leadership on its senior leadership team in a way that recognizes the complexities of the organization, allows for clear focus on institutional needs and priorities and ultimately ensures a successful future for Children’s Colorado and the child health faculty. Joan Bothner, MD, will hold the new title of chief physician transformation officer.  In this role, Joan will continue working with the hospital’s leadership regarding implementation of growth strategies, recruitment, new opportunities, and other aspects of the hospital’s strategic plan. Joan will continue to work with the School of Medicine as well as other systems, payers and community partners. Dan Hyman, MD, will hold the new title of chief medical and patient safety officer.  In this capacity, he will be responsible for the day-to-day operational aspects of provider practice within Children’s Colorado and will partner with nursing and operational leadership to continue work toward providing clinically excellent and cost-effective care. 

Friends and family of our former colleague Nancy Zahniser, PhD, professor emerita of pharmacology, are gathering for a Celebration of Life event on Saturday, July 9, 2 p.m., in the Gossard Auditorium of the Fulginiti Pavilion. Nancy passed away at home on May 5 and is fondly remembered in this tribute on the American Society for Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics website. All are welcome. Organizers ask for an RSVP and that any remembrances be emailed to

We offer condolences to the family of John Candler Cobb II, MD, MPH, who was chairman and professor of preventive medicine at the School of Medicine. He died at an extended care facility in Albuquerque on June 20. He had been with the School of Medicine from 1965 to 1985 and he participated in many high-profile projects included serving on a task force studying the Rocky Flats Plutonium Plant and Uranium Enrichment Plant and on the state’s Air Pollution Control Commission. 

The Undergraduate Medical Education Program is searching for a Clinical Cardiovascular Pulmonary Renal Block Director with an expected start date of Oct. 1.  Candidates must have a faculty appointment in the School of Medicine and a PhD, MD or equivalent degree from an accredited University to be eligible for this 0.10 FTE position.  To review the job description, please click here. Interested applicants should submit a letter of interest and current CV by Friday, July 22, to Theresa Anderson at and 303-724-9625. 

The Undergraduate Medical Education Program is searching for a Rural Community Care Block Director with an expected start date of Sept. 1. Candidates must have a faculty appointment in the School of Medicine and a PhD, MD or equivalent degree from an accredited University to be eligible for this 0.10 FTE position. To review the job description, please click here.  Interested applicants should submit a letter of interest and current CV by Friday, July 22, to Talitha Appel at and 303-724-2068. 

The School of Medicine is seeking volunteer facilitators to help with small group sessions for our new first-year medical students on Wednesday, Aug. 10, and Thursday, Aug. 11. These sessions are part of “First Course,” a two-day curriculum that introduces them to the concepts of health, disparities, health equity and medicine as a profession. On Aug. 10, we need facilitators from 1 p.m. to 2:30 p.m. to lead sessions in which students will read and discuss cases and possible resources to improve health and health care for all. On Aug. 11, facilitators are needed from 2:30 p.m. to 4:15 p.m. for the “Hopes and Fears Session,” during which students will write about their hopes and concerns upon entering medical school. The documents will be sealed and returned to the students near the end of their fourth year. Please email Helen Gurnee at to volunteer. 

State budget forecasts were presented to the Colorado General Assembly’s Joint Budget Committee last week and lawmakers heard that there are projected shortfalls in revenues to pay for the Fiscal Year 2016-17 budget, which takes effect on July 1. There was a variance between the Governor’s forecast and the legislature’s. The Governor’s office foresees an $11 million shortfall, while the legislature’s forecast is that the state will be $268 million short. State law allows the Governor to cover budget shortfalls from the state’s reserve if revenues are not sufficient to cover the spending program approved by the legislature. University of Colorado Chief Financial Officer Todd Saliman reports that the fiscal year beginning July 1, 2017, looks even more challenging as state revenues grow at a lower rate than demands for state services. As a result funding for higher education will be at risk.

For employees who are paid monthly, make a note that your June pay will be issued Friday, July 1. June’s monthly paycheck has been paid on July 1 every year since 2003, when state lawmakers and Gov. Bill Owens shifted the pay date to deal with a shortfall in the state budget. If you’re paid biweekly, there will be no change to your regular Friday pay date. 


There will be no Dean’s Weekly Message on Monday, July 4. Enjoy the holiday. 


John J. Reilly, Jr., MD
Richard D. Krugman Endowed Chair
Vice Chancellor for Health Affairs and
Dean, School of Medicine


The Dean’s weekly message is an email news bulletin from John J. Reilly, Jr., MD, Dean of the CU School of Medicine, that is distributed to inform University of Colorado School of Medicine faculty members, staff, students and others about issues pertaining to the School’s mission of education, research, clinical care and community service.  See the UCH-Insider →


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