About the University

The University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB) is a research university and academic health center that discovers, teaches and applies knowledge for the intellectual, cultural, social and economic benefit of Birmingham, the state and beyond. UAB is internationally renowned for its intensely collaborative culture that has ‐‐ for nearly five decades ‐‐ produced continual breakthroughs in education, healthcare, research and service. With over 20,000 students, UAB provides a student‐centered, collaborative learning experience to prepare diverse students for rewarding careers and lives that benefit society and our regional and global economy. In recent years, UAB has experienced a surge in enrollment that spans every school and the Honors College. In fall 2017, UAB had another year of record‐high enrollment (20,902) and its largest freshman class ever (2,299). The Princeton Review for Diversity has recognized the institution, and UAB continues to be one of the most diverse universities in the nation. The student body is 38.62 percent minority, and minority students make up 44.53 percent of the freshman class. The student population is 21.22 percent black and 61.21 percent female. UAB has 973 international students enrolled this fall, who along with 628 international faculty, staff and visiting scholars on campus, represent more than 100 countries around the world. In addition, UAB offers exceptional graduate and professional programs that prepare diverse students to lead, teach, conduct research, provide professional services, become the prominent scholars and societal leaders of the future, and contribute to our region's and our nation’s prosperity. UAB is home to schools of Medicine, Dentistry, Nursing, Optometry, Public Health, Health Professions, Engineering, Business, Education and the College of Arts & Sciences. The faculty, staff, and students of UAB have generated unique ideas and groundbreaking solutions to address the issues and challenges of a changing society.

In the four decades since its inception, this young, dynamic university has thrived with boldness and innovation that have pushed the frontiers in science, medicine, business, education, the arts and the humanities – and has garnered national and international respect. UAB had research expenditures of more than $510 million last year, ranking 18th among public universities and 34th overall in federally financed research. In funding from the National Institutes of Health, UAB ranks 10th among public universities with $243 million. Many of its roughly 2,000 faculty conduct research in university‐wide interdisciplinary research centers that span more than one academic school at UAB. UAB’s interdisciplinary culture presents its faculty with an opportunity to collaborate with colleagues from other schools, departments and disciplines who have comparable or complementary research interests. At the same time, UAB has reached out and collaborated with its community and state, spurring phenomenal progress over a half century. UAB’s growth as a world‐renowned research university and medical center has driven the social, cultural and economic revival of Birmingham. UAB is Alabama’s largest single employer, with an annual economic impact exceeding $7 billion, and continues partnering to improve education, health care and quality or life throughout the community and state.

Every individual school is engaged in important service programs, locally and globally, and service‐learning is deeply engrained across the curricula. UAB has been named for ten consecutive years to the President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll, the highest federal recognition a university can achieve for its commitment to civic engagement and service‐learning. The university continues to strengthen the historic partnership with Birmingham through shared strategic planning and collaboration on the development of “Innovate Birmingham” aimed at growing a robust, technology‐based economy for the region.

The University of Alabama System

The University of Alabama System consists of three doctoral research universities: The University of Alabama, The University of Alabama at Birmingham and The University of Alabama in Huntsville. The System is governed by The Board of Trustees of The University of Alabama as stipulated by the Alabama Constitution. The Board of Trustees created the present multi‐campus structure in 1969, and each of the component institutions has a unique mission that is consistent with the broader mission of the System.

The City of Birmingham

“If diversity were a place, it would be Birmingham.” There is incredible variety in Birmingham including cuisine, museums, outdoor experiences, entertainment, festivals and events. UAB’s decades long partnership with its community and State has led to the economic, cultural and social renaissance of Birmingham – the State’s largest metro area with a population of just over 1 million – as the city has grown from a primarily steel‐based economy to a thriving nexus of R&D, healthcare information and technology, medicine, banking and other services industries.

Known as the Magic City for its rapid growth, Birmingham is home to more than a dozen hospitals and booming health innovation and development. The area boasts more than 700 technology‐based companies and, in life science research, hundreds of millions have been awarded regionally from the National Institutes of Health. A vibrant regional innovation ecosystem is supported by UAB (the largest employer in Alabama), Southern Research Institute (with seven FDA‐approved drugs on the market), and Innovation Depot (the largest and most successful business technology incubator in the Southeast). UAB and other entities have long established the area as a health care hub offering world‐class care. With its acclaimed Health System and health professional schools, UAB brings the most advanced and promising treatments close to home.

The Birmingham area is steeped in the arts and culture. The Birmingham Museum of Art is the largest art museum in the southeast. In addition, Birmingham is home to the state’s major ballet, opera, and symphony orchestra companies including the Alabama Ballet, Alabama Symphony Orchestra, Birmingham Ballet, Birmingham Concert Chorale and Opera Birmingham. UAB’s Alys Stephens Center serves as Birmingham’s home for the performing arts and an anchor of the burgeoning Cultural Arts District – hosting performances by the Alabama Symphony Orchestra as well as diverse, top‐billed acts from Itzhak Perlman to Smokey Robinson to Kristen Chenoweth. The metro area’s vibrancy and diversity continues garnering national attention and has been hailed as a top travel destination by Zagat, National Geographic Traveler, The L.A. Times, NBC’s Today Show and Forbes.

The Birmingham area is also home to some of the country’s best high schools. The Jefferson County International Baccalaureate School in Irondale was ranked first in Alabama and eighth in the U.S. in the 2016 Washington Post study of America's Most Challenging High Schools. The school remains among the nation’s top five high schools. Local schools rated among America’s best in various publications include Mountain Brook High School, Homewood High School, Vestavia Hills High School and the Alabama School of Fine Arts. The metro area is also home to three highly regarded preparatory schools: Saint Rose Academy, The Altamont School and Indian Springs School.

With endless river ways, 22 million acres of lush forests and diverse vistas that range from Gulf Coast beaches to Appalachian cliffs, Alabama is a paradise for those who love the great outdoors. Recreational opportunities abound and the scenery is exquisite. From the majestic mountains of North Alabama to the sugar‐white sands of the Gulf Coast beaches, outdoor lovers will find Alabama a great place. Outdoor entertainment is one of the main attractions to Birmingham. The addition of Birmingham’s Railroad Park and the Rotary Trail give the city more greenspace per capita than any other city in the country, so outdoor recreation is easily accessible.  Championship golf, hiking and mountain biking are virtually year‐round sports, along with fishing in what is known as the “Bass Capital of the World.” Alabama's location at the southern end of the Appalachian mountain chain provides the unique opportunity to hike in some of the most diverse and beautiful woodlands in the nation. Whether you want peaceful seclusion, an adrenaline rush or bustling nightlife, you will find it on Alabama’s Gulf Coast. For years, Gulf Shores and Orange Beach remained a hidden vacation treasure, but more and more families are discovering the 32 miles of soft sand and clear waters that lace the edges of Alabama’s southern border to the Gulf of Mexico. For more information:

The School of Public Health

The mission of the School of Public Health is to create, disseminate, apply and teach knowledge to improve health and wellbeing. The School has over 350 undergraduates and approximately 400 graduate students with 65 faculty members and 150 administrative and professional staff. Accredited by the Council on Education for Public Health, it is the only accredited School of Public Health in Alabama.

The School of Public Health’s mission is accomplished through five academic departments and numerous resources to support students and faculty, including four endowed professorships. In addition to offering undergraduate concentrations in Public Health, Environmental Health Studies and Global Health Studies, the School of Public Health offers 48 masters and 7 doctoral level programs. The Department of Biostatistics offers training at both the graduate and post‐ doctoral level and includes concentrations in research methods, statistical genetics and clinical trials. The Department of Environmental Health Science addresses environmental risk factors (smoke, water, airborne pollutants) for particular populations and their health, and offers training programs at the Master’s and Ph.D. levels. The Department of Epidemiology offers M.P.H., M.S.P.H., and Dr.P.H. degrees and addresses trends, patterns and causes of disease in populations. The Department of Health Behavior offers the M.P.H. and Ph.D. degrees as well as a clinical research MSPH to investigate different sociocultural and behavioral factors to understand how healthy environments are created and sustained among different populations. The Department of Health Care Organization and Policy offers M.P.H., M.S.P.H. and Dr.P.H. degrees that examine laws, regulations, and approaches to policy to protect the health of communities and populations as well as maternal and child health.

The School of Public Health’s mission is also accomplished through its vibrant Centers for collaboration. The Sparkman Center for Global Health contributes to solutions of health problems in developing countries through undergraduate and graduate‐level public health education, research, and training programs. The Center for the Study of Community Health is one of 26 Prevention Research Centers funded nationally by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to improve the health and lives of Alabama’s underserved residents. The Deep South Center for Occupational Health and Safety is the only NIOSH ERC in the region and serves as a critical resource to business, labor and industry in preventing work‐related injury and illness. The Lister Hill Center for Health Policy addresses population health by facilitating research, seminars, and workshops. The Alabama‐Mississippi Public Health Training Center advances the knowledge and skills of the future public health workforce through programs in medically underserved areas throughout the states. The Hypertension Center is one of four centers studying high blood pressure as part of the American Heart Association’s Strategically Focused Research Network. The Region IV Public Health Training Center provides public health workforce trainings, faculty and student collaborative projects, and student field placements. Faculty from the School of Public Health are also integral participants in many of the 24 university‐wide interdisciplinary research centers.

Community engagement is key to accomplishing the mission of the School of Public Health. The Office of Public Health Practice seeks to increase and enhance engagement between public health community stakeholders and the School of Public Health faculty, staff, students and alumni.

Position Description

The Dean of the School of Public Health is the chief executive and academic officer of the School, collaborating with the faculty and staff in overseeing the quality of its academic programs; stewarding and enhancing the school’s fiscal, capital and human resources; and playing a prominent role in fund raising and building partnerships. The Dean reports to the Senior Vice President of Academic Affairs and Provost. The Dean provides leadership to the faculty and staff in all matters relating to curriculum and program development; accreditation, assessment and evaluation; recruitment and retention of faculty, staff and students; and research, scholarship, grant‐seeking, and fundraising. The Dean will also actively pursue collaborations with corporations, NIH, common resources and other organizations, as well as fundraising for the School in concert with the Office of Development and Alumni.

Key Opportunities, Responsibilities and Challenges:

  • Provide strategic oversight and expertise for all aspects of the School, including the positive representation of the School within the UAB enterprise;
  • Lead the strategic planning, growth and development of the School and provides strategic oversight and expertise for all aspects of the School, including the positive representation of the School within the UAB enterprise;
  • Expand and enhance the strength of the research programs within the School, building on existing strengths and creating new areas of research excellence;
  • Ensure the financial health of the School;
  • Lead and assist in securing extramural and philanthropic resources necessary for the growth and improvement of the School;
  • Participate in university wide‐efforts to create a more efficient, effective, cohesive and high‐quality academic enterprise;
  • Develop close, cooperative relationships with other units on campus to cultivate a community of mutual respect advanced by meaningful interaction;
  • Build a strong network of community alliances and support and draw upon this network to shape the future of the School;
  • Insure that the School has effective programs of student recruitment, advising and student success activities; and
  • Provide and promote open communication within the School so that transparency yields improved opportunities for the School’s success.

Qualifications and Characteristics

Candidates must have an earned doctorate in public health or a related discipline with a distinguished academic leadership record or equivalent experience in government or non‐profit public health organizations appropriate for appointment at the rank of Professor at UAB. Other qualifications include:

  • A strong record of NIH and/or extramurally funded research and scholarship in the field of public health, with the stature and ability to cultivate and extend the School’s research agenda;
  • A record of successful administrative leadership in higher education or equivalent experience in government or non‐profit public health organizations that demonstrates strong evidence of his/her capacity to manage the School of Public Health at UAB;
  • A demonstrated ability to be an institutional citizen and commitment to advancing the quality of education;
  • A foundation in financial management with the ability to make sound judgements and the ability to develop and implement the budget effectively, aligning resources with strategic priorities;
  • An understanding and clear commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion at all levels to foster an inclusive and equitable working and learning environment;
  • Experience in leading and organizing School‐wide CEPH and SACS accreditation activities;
  • A proven capacity to lead in the development of effective programs of student recruitment, advising and student success activities to result in a competent and effective public health workforce;
  • Strong financial acumen with experience in managing and stewarding resources, an ability to promote an entrepreneurial yet fiscally sound environment and to thrive within Responsibility Center Management;
  • Demonstrated ability to recruit and retain a diverse faculty at all levels;
  • A record of proven, transformative leadership with the ability to articulate a clear, compelling vision and to engage all constituencies in support of that vision;
  • An ability to work effectively with faculty, students, staff, community stakeholders and partners to advance the School’s mission;
  • Strong written, oral and interpersonal skills with the ability to communicate the vision, strengths and strategic plan effectively;
  • The ability to develop and implement a strategic plan, establish metrics and assess progress, and align with the university strategic plan; and
  • The ability to build a cohesive team within the School to develop a strong sense of community and pride for the School of Public Health.

Applications and Nominations

The Search Committee invites nominations and applications (a letter of application that addresses the responsibilities and requirements described in the position description, curriculum vitae and the names and contact information of five or more references) to be submitted to the search firm assisting the UAB School of Public Health. References will not be contacted without prior knowledge and approval of candidates. Confidential review of materials will begin immediately and continue until the position is filled. These materials should be sent electronically to the search firm consultant. It is preferred that all nominations and applications be submitted by February 1, 2018.

Laurie C. Wilder, President
Porsha L. Williams, Vice President
Jacob C. Anderson, Principal
Parker Executive Search
Five Concourse Parkway, Suite 2900 Atlanta, GA 30328
770‐804‐1996 ext. 102; 109; 111
lwilder@parkersearch.com | pwilliams@parkersearch.com | janderson@parkersearch.com
UAB is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer committed to fostering a diverse, equitable and family‐friendly environment in which all faculty and staff can excel and achieve work/life balance irrespective of, race, national origin, age, genetic or family medical history, gender, faith, gender identity and expression as well as sexual orientation. UAB also encourages applications from individuals with disabilities and veterans. A pre‐employment background check investigation is performed on candidates selected for employment.


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