Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center Names New School of Medicine Dean

March 30, 2006
CONTACT: Suzanna Cisneros Martinez, suzanna.martinez@ttuhsc.edu
(806) 743-2143

LUBBOCK – Steven Lee Berk, M.D., regional dean of the Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center School of Medicine at Amarillo, was named Thursday (March 30) the new dean of the Health Sciences Center School of Medicine in Lubbock.

In this new position, he will have responsibilities for the academic and clinical administration for the main School of Medicine in Lubbock and supervisory responsibilities for the School of Medicine locations at Amarillo, El Paso and the Permian Basin.

M. Roy Wilson, M.D., M.S., president of the Health Sciences Center, said Berk’s vision and strong professional background will keep the momentum going strong for the School of Medicine.

“Dr. Berk is an outstanding physician and administrator,” Wilson said. “He has a proven track record in the academic medical school system and his reputation among his peers is excellent.”

Alexia Green, Ph.D., dean of the School of Nursing and chairman of the Dean Search Committee, said Berk has devoted his lifetime to academic medicine.

“The committee looked at Dr. Berk’s clinical expertise and administrative positions, which are exceptional,” Green said. “He is deeply respected in the settings in which he has worked and for his insight in educational and clinical medicine. His reputation in the field of medicine made him an admirable fit for this position.”

Berk said he is ready for the challenges ahead.

“I look forward to working with all campuses to continue to build our reputation in medical student education and patient care and to develop excellence in clinical and basic research,” Berk said.

In his current position, Berk also serves as the Mirick-Myers Endowed Chair in Geriatric Medicine and as a professor of medicine in the Department of Internal Medicine.

Berk’s professional experience includes serving at East Tennessee State University at Johnson City, Tenn., as assistant professor of medicine from 1979 to 1981; associate professor of medicine from 1981 to 1986; chief of the Division of Infectious Diseases from 1982 to 1988; associate chairman of the Department of Internal Medicine from 1983 to 1988; and chairman of the Department of Internal Medicine from 1988 to 1999.

Berk earned his bachelor’s degree from Brandeis University in Waltham, Mass., in 1971 and his medical degree from Boston University School of Medicine in 1975. He completed his residency as well as an infectious disease fellowship at Boston City Hospital. He is a member of Phi Beta Kappa, Alpha Omega Alpha and Sigma Xi and was elected as Laureate in Medicine by the American College of Physicians in 1998.

His medical experience also includes a position as research and clinical fellow in infectious diseases at Boston City Hospital from 1977 to 1979; chief of the Division of Infectious Diseases at the Veterans Affairs Medical Center in Johnson City, Tenn., from 1979 to 1983; and chief of medicine at Veterans Affairs Medical Center from 1982 to 1988.

Berk replaces Richard V. Homan, M.D., who left to serve as senior vice president for Health Affairs and Annenberg Dean of the College of Medicine at Drexel University in Philadelphia, Penn.

Berk and his wife, Shirley, have two children, Jeremy Charles and Justin Lee.

Wilson said Berk will begin his term as the new dean in August 2006.