Two new interim academic leadership appointments announced

Catherine Waters, PdD, will serve as our Interim Associate Dean for Academic Affairs (ADAA) during the coming year. Waters is a Professor in the Department of Community Health Systems as well as the Sally Bates Endowed Chair in Community Nursing and Health Disparities. She has been a member of our ladder rank faculty since 1996. Waters' history of accomplishments and experience make her the perfect choice for this role. Over the last few years, she has served on the Academic Senate's Committee on Academic Personnel (CAP) which reviews and recommends appointments and promotions of faculty in all academic series from all schools on campus. She has also served on the university-wide Committee on Academic Personnel (UCAP) which is responsible for policy decisions related to academic personnel matters across all 10 campuses of the University of California. In these roles, she has developed knowledge that is essential for success as the ADAA and has worked closely with the academic personnel offices both on our campus and in the UC Office of the President. Waters has also served as an external reviewer for academic appointments and promotions at many other Universities across the country. She demonstrates a strong commitment to diversity and knowledge of UC policies related to diversity - these are important expectations for this role. Catherine received a campus Champion of Diversity Award and has served on both the Chancellor's Advisory Committee on the Status of Women as well as on the Chancellor's Committee on Diversity.

Her breadth of understanding regarding campus policies and her participation as a citizen of our campus are truly outstanding. She has been a member of the Graduate Council, the Committee on Courses of Instruction, Rules & Jurisdiction, the Academic Planning & Budget Committee, and the Academic Senate Coordinating Committee. She has also been a member of the Campus Council on Faculty Life and CTSI's Community Engagement & Outreach. In our School, Waters has chaired the Masters Program Council and been a member of both the Doctoral Screening Committee and the Doctoral Program Council. She has also been Chair of both our Research Committee and our Faculty Council. What a commitment to University Service!! And her contributions to public service are just as strong.

Waters will bring excellent leadership experience to the position of Interim Associate Dean. She has participated in the UCSF CORO Academic Leadership Program and served as Vice President of the Health Commission for the City and County of San Francisco. Since her initial faculty appointment, she has been the Director of three different specialty programs in the School: Community & Cross-Cultural Health, Advanced Community Health & International Nursing, and Advanced Public Health Nursing. She has received a leadership award from Sigma Theta Tau International and was designated a member of their Leadership Hall of Fame, as well as having served as our School’s Alpha Eta Chapter President.

Waters will serve 50% time as Interim Associate Dean for Academic Affairs and the other 50% in her ongoing faculty responsibilities. She is known for her belief in accessibility, open communication, ethics, and transparency. As noted by the search committee, chaired by Wendy Max - "We really didn't identify any weaknesses for Catherine........ She'll be able to hit the ground running." I expect that she will do just that, in addition to an exemplary job in this new role.

The new Interim Associate Dean for Research (ADR) will be Julene Johnson, PhD - a highly respected researcher in our School. Johnson is an Adjunct Professor in the Department of Social and Behavioral Sciences and the Associate Director of our Institute for Health & Aging (IHA). Her program of research focuses on cognitive aging and risk for dementia in diverse racial/ethnic older adults as well as the development of novel community-based interventions to promote their health and well-being. Johnson has had continuous external funding for her program of research from 2003 until now. Over that time, she has had research awards as PI and Co-PI from NIH as well as California's Department of Health Services, the National Endowment for the Arts, and varied private foundations. Her current funding is from the National Institute on Aging, the California Department of Public Health, and the California Arts Council.

Johnson has been a grant reviewer for many international, national and state agencies. For NIH, she has served on Scientific Review Groups for 4 different Institutes (NIA, NINR, NIGMS, & NICHD). She has also reviewed grants for multiple private foundations and served on the campus Research Allocation Program (RAP) Neuroscience Review Committee for 6 years. Her impressive research productivity, her knowledge of the NIH review process and criteria, and her extensive grant review experience will be a significant asset to faculty in her ADR role. Among her responsibilities as Associate Director at IHA, Johnson has mentored junior faculty, including facilitation of their research development. She has conducted research brown bags, held mock review sessions, and implemented other forms of research facilitation for early career faculty, postdoctoral fellows and graduate students. She also has been a primary mentor to many faculty with NIH-funded K Awards and NIH Diversity Supplements, and completed the CTSI Mentor Development Program in 2015.

Johnson has a PhD in Cognitive Neuroscience from the University of Texas, Dallas. Her postdoctoral work was also in the neurosciences at UC Irvine's Institute for Brain Aging and Dementia. She is a fellow of the Gerontological Society of America as well as a past Fulbright Scholar. Johnson is internationally recognized for her research and has participated (by invitation) in many national policy initiatives, including for NIH, the National Endowment for the Arts, and the National Academy of Sciences. She is integrally involved with a number of interdisciplinary research centers, including multi-campus research centers within the UC system and at UCSF. Her own research is very interdisciplinary and typically involves community partnerships.

She has proposed a very astute vision for her role as ADR: 1) strengthening the mentoring infrastructure, 2) improving coordination of research initiatives and grant metrics, and 3) streamlining communication regarding NIH and other agency opportunities and priorities for funding. She has also demonstrated an enthusiasm for learning about the research needs of our faculty, fellows, and staff so that she can support your unique needs over the coming year. We are extremely fortunate that someone with such knowledge, experience and commitment is assuming the interim role of Associate Dean for Research. Johnson will begin her 50% time position as of September 1st.