July 29, 2002
I am pleased to announce that Dr. Pierre Buekens has accepted the position of dean at Tulane's School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine. Dr. Buekens comes to us from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill where he has been professor and chairman of the Department of Maternal and Child Health since 1996 and associate dean for Global Health at the university's School of Public Health. He is also a fellow at the school's Carolina Population Center. Dr. Buekens is an outstanding scholar, educator and academic administrator with an impressive record of institution building.
Dr. Buekens received his medical degree, summa cum laude, from the Free University of Brussels in 1979 and a master of public health, also summa cum laude, from the Free University in 1982. He also earned his certification in obstetrics and gynecology in 1984 and his Ph.D. in epidemiology and public health, with high honors, in 1988.
Dr. Buekens completed his residency at Saint Pierre University in Brussels from 1979-1982 and was a researcher at Free University from 1982 to 1996. During this period he also served as a visiting associate professor at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, a guest researcher at the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences Epidemiology Branch at Research Triangle Park and the medical officer in charge of the supervision of Brussels' prenatal clinics. From 1995 to 1996 he was vice president of Free University of Brussels' School of Public Health.
Dr. Buekens, who is fluent in English, French and Spanish and conversant in Dutch, has served as a consultant for the World Health Organization, UNICEF and other international organizations. He has published numerous articles and edited two books related to his research interests in perinatal epidemiology, minority health and evaluation of perinatal services.
Dr. Buekens will replace Ann C. Anderson, who has ably served as acting dean of our School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine since October 1999. Under Ann's leadership the school strengthened its financial position while training students and public health professionals throughout the state and world to deal with public health threats ranging from long-known illnesses to bioterrorist attacks. A major focus of Ann's tenure was utilizing distance learning in public health education. To that end, she oversaw the establishment of an innovative program in which students can fulfill all the requirements of a degree in occupational health and safety without ever stepping foot on campus.
I offer my sincere thanks to Ann for her stewardship of the dean's office. I would also like to thank Dr. Paul Whelton, senior vice president for Health Sciences, Dr. Bob Magnani, chair of the dean's search committee, and the entire committee for the successful completion of their task.
I hope you all join me in welcoming Pierre and his family when they become part of the Tulane community in January 2003.
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