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Message from the Board of Trustees Chair

For more than a century, Rosalind Franklin University of Medicine and Science has proudly prepared future physicians and healthcare professionals. Since late 2002, we have benefited from the vision and leadership of our President and CEO Dr. K. Michael Welch.

It is with profound gratitude for Dr. Welch’s vision that I share his decision to retire in January 2017. We will soon launch a nationwide search to discover and engage a new leader who can build on the innovation and enduring values that distinguish our institution. We are committed to a smooth transition during this critical time.

Dr. Welch, a neurologist and internationally recognized researcher and expert in brain function and structure in cerebrovascular disease, stroke and migraine, has helped place the university at the forefront of health professions education and on firm footing, both financially and academically.

Over the past decade of strategic growth, we have forged a new identity by renaming our university in honor of a scientist whose work was crucial to the single most important advance in modern biology. We have embraced and continue to hone a focus on interprofessional education and practice. We have expanded our facilities, established new programs and strengthened clinical training and scientific research.

In 2012, we celebrated our centennial — a century of growth and service and pride in our more than 17,000 alumni who have devoted their professional lives to improved health. That same year, we established the Alliance for Health Sciences with DePaul University to provide new opportunities, mentoring and tuition savings for students, and research funding under our Pilot Grant program.

We have responded to the needs of our community and our nation through the formation of numerous strategic partnerships to develop an internal medicine residency.

Our partnership with the Health Professions Education Consortium, the North Chicago Community High School Healthcare Careers Pathway and another pipeline effort, our nationally recognized INSPIRE program, are helping us attract highly-motivated students dedicated to improving the health of their communities.

We have also focused on our university community, working to support our students as they take on the rigors of graduate health professions education, to be more inclusive and expand scholarship support. We continue to aggressively seek out new clinical training sites and prepare our students to secure top residences in the face of stiff competition for those opportunities.

We continue to place a high priority on research, with strong investment in the recruitment of top scientists — hiring 33 over the past decade — core facilities and diversifying research funding, with the goal of sustainability, through efforts including faculty start-ups, seed funding of interdisciplinary, inter-institutional investigations. We’re investing in our students, our local community and beyond through mentoring and thoughtfully-designed programs including our Interprofessional Community Clinic and global health initiative.

Each of these efforts and so many more, reflect, encourage and support our shared commitment to service and improved health. That commitment spans generations and transcends inevitable transitions in leadership. It creates a momentum that can anticipate challenges, create opportunities and lead the future of health care.

Thank you for your support.

Gail L. Warden, MHA
Chair, Board of Trustees
Rosalind Franklin University of Medicine and Science
President Emeritus, Henry Ford Health System