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Friedman to lead Medical School, AHC

As two high-level University of Minnesota leaders’ retirement dates draw near, the Academic Health Center (AHC) and Medical School are making plans for the transition.

Frank B. Cerra, M.D., who currently serves as the University’s senior vice president for health sciences and dean of the Medical School, will retire December 31 (see related story on page 19). University President Robert H. Bruininks, Ph.D., plans to retire June 30.

Bruininks in September named the Medical School’s Department of Pediatrics chairman Aaron Friedman, M.D., as vice president of health sciences and dean, effective with Cerra’s retirement. In his announcement, Bruininks said that he would urge the next University president to conduct a national search for a permanent replacement.

Friedman, who holds the Ruben-Bentson Chair in Pediatric Community Health, also is the pediatrician-in-chief at University of Minnesota Amplatz Children’s Hospital, a member of University of Minnesota Physicians’ board of directors, and chair of the Medical School’s education council. He arrived at the University of Minnesota in 2008.

“I chose Dr. Friedman because he is an entrepreneurial and visionary change agent skilled at building effective working relationships and inspiring a unified vision to accomplish shared goals,” Bruininks wrote in a message to the AHC community in September. “These qualifications, as well as his personal integrity, high energy, and ability to work across academic and organizational boundaries, made him the ideal candidate for this position.”

Friedman began his duties on a part-time basis on October 15. He and Cerra will work together through December to make the transition as smooth as possible.

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