Dean's Weekly Message

November 14, 2016


Dear colleague: 

Congratulations to John Hobbins, MD, professor of obstetrics and gynecology and director of the Prenatal Diagnosis and Genetics Center, and to Ernest E. Moore, MD, professor and vice chair of trauma and critical care research in the Department of Surgery, on being named Distinguished Professors of the University of Colorado, the highest honor awarded to faculty from across the CU system’s four campuses. CU Distinguished Professors are faculty members who demonstrate exemplary performance in research or creative work, a record of excellence in classroom teaching and supervision of individual learning, and outstanding service to the profession, the university and its affiliates. CU President Bruce D. Benson reviews the nominations and, with a recommendation from a committee of existing Distinguished Professors, forwards to the University’s Board of Regents for review and approval. At its meeting last Thursday, the Regents approved a total of four new Distinguished Professors. The others honored were Bernard Amadei, PhD, professor of civil, environmental and architectural engineering at University of Colorado Boulder, and Zbigniew Celinski, PhD, professor of physics and energy science at the University of Colorado Colorado Springs. 

The Faculty Senate last Tuesday approved adding members to the School’s Curriculum Steering Committee who are elected by the Faculty Senate. I want to express my gratitude to the senators for their unanimous support for a change that will provide the kind of direct faculty participation in educational matters that is desired by our accrediting body, the Liaison Committee on Medical Education (LCME). While the Curriculum Steering Committee already has faculty representatives on it, the LCME looks for elected membership, a goal that is fulfilled by this vote. 

The 2016 Fall Awards Ceremony on Wednesday celebrated some of the outstanding students at our School. The Departments of Cell and Developmental Biology, Medicine, Pathology, Pharmacology, Psychiatry and Surgery, along with the Office of Medical Education’s Essential Core presented the awards. There were also five award winners recognized for their service to the community and to their peers. It was a great pleasure to recognize the awardees: Eric Achatz, Leah Kellogg, Fred Gonzales, Caroline Nguyen, Acadia Paine, Sarah Cain, Derek Nhan, Richard Froude, Blake Snyder, Thien Le, Katherine Lind, Daniel Hogan Slack, Luke Baldelli and William Dufficy. 

Sue Anschutz-Rodgers, who has been a generous contributor to the School of Medicine, was honored Thursday with a lifetime achievement award from the Association of Fundraising Professionals at its National Philanthropy Day luncheon. Honors were also bestowed on The Anschutz Foundation as outstanding foundation, and to CU First Lady Marcy and President Bruce Benson as outstanding philanthropists. The outstanding professional in philanthropy award in the grant-making category went to John H. “Jack” Alexander Jr. of the Helen K. and Arthur E. Johnson Foundation. These National Philanthropy Day honorees have all contributed significantly to our School and its programs in ways that make a profound difference in the lives of our faculty, students and patients and we are extremely grateful for their generosity. Cory Andersen, who chaired the luncheon, said: “Philanthropy shows the love of humankind. We are blessed to have so many people in Colorado that give their time, talent and treasure to make a difference and create impact in their communities.” We are fortunate that so many of them are supporting CU. 

Denver Medical Study Group is hosting an event featuring Colorado Lt. Gov. Donna Lynne on Thursday, Dec. 8, from 5:30 p.m. to 8 p.m. at Children’s Hospital Colorado. The topic is “The Post-Election Future of Healthcare in Colorado.” She is the former executive vice president of Kaiser Foundation Health Plan Inc. and Kaiser Foundation Hospitals, and as group president, she was responsible for its Colorado, Pacific Northwest and Hawaii regions. Registration is required to attend. Denver Medical Study Group was formed in 2008 to discuss issues, trends and innovation in the healthcare industry that impact the way healthcare is delivered in Colorado.

The Undergraduate Medical Education program is searching for a Clinical Human Body Block Director. An appointment will be made by March 1, 2017, with a start date no later than July 1, 2017. Candidates must have a faculty appointment at the University of Colorado, and an MD or equivalent degree from an accredited University. This at-will position will receive 0.25 FTE. To review the job description, click here. Interested applicants should submit a letter of interest and current CV to Theresa Anderson ( by Friday, Dec. 9.

Lindsey Lyle, PA, in the Blood Cancers and Bone Marrow Transplant Program, has been selected as national editor for a series called MPN Updates through Journal of the Advanced Practice Practitioner in Oncology. The year-long initiative consists of monthly emails and an expert roundtable discussion to raise awareness of and increase provider education in the field of Myeloproliferative Neoplasms. 

Denver Health and the University of Colorado School of Medicine, along with two other institutions, have been awarded a U.S. Department of Defense contract to establish a nationwide network of trauma systems capable of conducting detailed research to improve injury outcomes. The Linking Investigations in Trauma and Emergency Services network will collect extensive data from thousands of trauma cases across the country. The University of Pittsburgh and the University of Oregon will be partners on the $10.7 million contract. Ernest E. Moore, MD, trauma surgeon at Denver Health, and professor of surgery at the School of Medicine, is the principal investigator on the project. 

The chancellors of CU Denver and CU Anschutz Medical Campus last week announced the sixth annual CU in the Community program. The program allows employees to take a half-day of work time to volunteer with the organization of their choice. It’s a great way to spend time with colleagues outside the office while lending support to those in need. This year, the chancellors announced a focus efforts for military veterans. The program runs from Veterans Day (Friday, Nov. 11) through Presidents' Day (Monday, Feb. 20). Volunteers can choose an organization that they personally support and the University has also put together a featured partners list. Faculty and staff can choose to participate individually or with a group/department. Students and alumni are also welcome to participate with faculty and staff or individually. 

I close this week’s message with some thoughts on the election and its implications for our school.  Since Tuesday, I have spoken with a range of members of our school community about the results and their implications.  Some are extremely depressed and concerned, others are elated and hopeful. These discussions also highlighted a clear area of agreement among all regardless of their political viewpoint: distress over the rancor and divisiveness of the campaign.  The actions of our newly elected leaders will undoubtedly impact health care over the upcoming years and we will need to adapt our tactics for this changing environment.  What we will not change, however, is our commitment to our missions of providing world-class health care to all in need, advancing the science needed to improve our understanding of biology and translating that understanding to improved prevention and therapy, and educating the next generation of researchers and health care providers. Also unchanged is our commitment to embracing diversity as a core component of our strategy.  We will continue our efforts to recruit and support a diverse student body, faculty and staff and to leverage their skills to meet the needs of the diverse population we serve. We will continue to support a diversity of ideas, respectful and civil dialogue among those with differing points of view, and a respectful and tolerant environment for all.  


Have a good week,

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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