Kari Simonsen, M.D., to lead Office of Faculty Affairs

by Megan Blusys, Academic Affairs | April 02, 2018

Image with caption: Kari Simonsen, M.D.

Kari Simonsen, M.D.

Senior Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs Dele Davies, M.D., has announced leadership changes in academic affairs to better integrate and coordinate support for faculty.

Kari Simonsen, M.D., will spearhead the creation of the Office of Faculty Affairs and has been named interim assistant vice chancellor for faculty affairs. She currently serves as vice chair for clinical and academic affairs in the Department of Pediatrics and division chief of pediatric infectious diseases.

About Dr. Simonsen

Dr. Simonsen has a strong track record of sustained leadership and interest in faculty development. A graduate of UNMC's Interprofessional Leadership for Excellence and Academic Development (iLEAD) program, the Great Plains Leadership Institute in the College of Public Health, and the Children's Hospital/Creighton University Leadership Experience Accelerator for Physicians (LEAP) program, she will complete the Executive Leadership in Academic Medicine (ELAM) program at Drexel University next month. During the ELAM intensive one-year fellowship, Dr. Simonsen focused her efforts on developing programs for faculty development, mentorship and support. Read Dr. Simonsen's full bio.

"The resignation of Dr. Howard Liu as the assistant vice chancellor for faculty development to become the interim chair of psychiatry offered us the opportunity to strategically reevaluate existing resources," Dr. Davies said. "The creation of the Office of Faculty Affairs will ultimately lead to more efficient allocation of resources and enhanced support of faculty. Dr. Simonsen is a wonderful fit for this position because she possesses the leadership skills, collaborative spirit and passion for developing faculty that is necessary to making the office a success."

Under the new structure, the assistant vice chancellor for faculty development role has been eliminated. Instead, the assistant vice chancellor for faculty affairs will lead the newly established Office of Faculty Affairs and oversee the activities of Faculty Development, Interprofessional Academy of Educators, Interprofessional Education and the Office of Equity, as well as work closely with the Faculty Mentoring program. Dr. Davies also noted this reorganization is occurring within the current allocated budget of the units involved.

"Faculty are one of our most valuable resources for impacting the success of students and residents and advancing UNMC's mission. As such, we need to ensure they have an inclusive environment that supports their ongoing development, personal well-being and professional effectiveness," Dr. Simonsen said.

Her vision is to create an office that serves as a central access point for UNMC faculty by providing the guidance, resources and training they need to achieve teaching, research and scholarship success.

"I look forward to this opportunity to create synergy across programs, as well as support avenues for the advancement of junior faculty, women and faculty from underrepresented groups," Dr. Simonsen said.


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Corri Hanson
April 02, 2018 at 9:49 AM

Congratulations Kari! This is a well-deserved honor!

Peter Iwen
April 02, 2018 at 8:53 AM

Kari, Congratulations! Your training record and background activities show that you are a great pick for this position!

Gary Beck Dallaghan, Ph.D.
April 02, 2018 at 4:54 AM

Well deserved and perfect pick for the position! Congratulations, Kari!