Early next year the Allen School will celebrate its 10th anniversary. We are starting the festivities early with the appointment of Dr. Tom Kawula as the new director. Tom brings a rare combination of talents including internationally recognized scholarship, educational leadership, and a commitment to the humanitarian values, which are central to the school’s mission. As a renowned infectious diseases scientist, Tom adds to the breadth and depth of expertise in zoonotic diseases within the faculty. But it is his record of innovation in graduate education and his dedication to mentoring students, fellows, and young faculty that caught the attention of the search committee. Allen School students engage in multiple graduate programs at WSU, reflecting the diversity of disciplinary expertise needed to address global health problems, and conduct research in multiple global sites as well as in the Allen Center’s state-of-the-art laboratories. Innovative global health education, especially in equal partnerships with institutions in developing countries where demand is rapidly increasing, will be a challenge and an opportunity for WSU and the Allen School. Tom’s experience and expertise will be an ideal fit. In terms of timing, Tom’s arrival comes as an exciting chapter unfolds at WSU with the development of the new Elson S. Floyd College of Medicine. Tom spent most of his career in the University of North Carolina School of Medicine, but also has experience at two colleges of veterinary medicine, a combination that will help guide WSU in maximizing our collective impact to improve health for everyone, everywhere. On behalf of the faculty, staff, students, and our incredible network of donors, we welcome Tom and can’t wait to see what the next 10 years brings.
Creighton Endowed Chair and WSU Senior Director of Global Health