January 6, 2010

Changes at the Medical School

Michael Rosenblatt steps down; Harris Berman appointed interim dean

Harris Berman. Photo: Melody Ko

In late December, Dean Michael Rosenblatt announced that he would be stepping down to become executive vice president and chief medical officer at the pharmaceutical giant Merck & Co.

Rosenblatt had been dean of Tufts University School of Medicine for six years, significantly longer than the average tenure of a medical school dean. “The school is in a strong position thanks to his leadership,” Tufts President Lawrence S. Bacow and Jamshed Bharucha, provost and senior vice president, said in a joint statement in which they announced that Vice Dean Harris Berman would lead the school as interim dean.

Rosenblatt’s “accomplishments are many, and we are proud to have had him in the administration,” Bacow and Bharucha said in their statement. “During his deanship, he has worked to recruit outstanding faculty, forge closer ties with our clinical affiliates, improve the facilities for faculty research and student life and learning, and advance diversity.”

Michael Rosenblatt. Photo: Jodi Hilton

In a farewell letter to the medical school community, Rosenblatt wrote, “The decision to leave Tufts has not been easy for me because of the wonderful students, faculty and staff . . . It will always be one of the great honors and satisfactions of my life to have had the opportunity to lead this remarkable school, one of the ‘jewels’ of American medicine.” But, he also noted, “the nature of this [new] opportunity and its timing seems right.”

Berman, the school’s interim dean, received a B.A. from Harvard College and his medical degree from Columbia University’s College of Physicians and Surgeons and did most of his postgraduate training, including a fellowship in infectious disease, at Tufts-New England Medical Center (now Tufts Medical Center). He also served for 17 years as CEO of Tufts Health Plan. In 2003, he was appointed dean of public health and professional degree programs at Tufts Medical School. Last year he was named vice dean for academic and clinical affairs, as well as a professor of public health and community medicine.

“Dr. Berman is an accomplished medical leader, and we are delighted that he has accepted this new challenge,” said Bacow and Bharucha in their statement. “With the help of the deans, faculty and staff, we expect this to be a smooth transition for Tufts School of Medicine.”

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