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Jane Kim Appointed Interim Dean of Harvard School of Public Health

University President-elect Claudine Gay named Jane J. Kim interim dean for the School of Public Health Thursday morning.
University President-elect Claudine Gay named Jane J. Kim interim dean for the School of Public Health Thursday morning. By Zadoc I.N. Gee
By Miles J. Herszenhorn and Claire Yuan, Crimson Staff Writers

Jane J. Kim, a professor of health economics, will serve as interim dean of the Harvard School of Public Health as the search for the school’s next permanent dean continues, University President-elect Claudine Gay announced Thursday morning.

Kim, who currently serves as dean for academic affairs at HSPH, will officially assume the role on July 1. The announcement is the first major public update in the four dean searches Gay inherited as president-elect. She is leading the search for the next School of Public Health dean with University Provost Alan M. Garber ’76.

Outgoing HSPH Dean Michelle A. Williams announced in November that she would depart at the end of the 2022-23 academic year, after serving seven years in the role. High leadership turnover marked Williams’ tenure as dean, with faculty weighing a rare vote of no confidence against her amid allegations that she and her deputy fostered a toxic culture at the school.

Harvard President Lawrence S. Bacow launched the search for Williams’ successor, before handing it over to Gay after her selection in December 2022 as the University’s 30th president.

Kim’s selection as interim HSPH dean is the second major personnel decision Gay has made in recent days, announcing on Tuesday that University Marshal Katherine O’Dair will serve as her presidential chief of staff.

In an email to School of Public Health affiliates, Gay praised Kim as a “highly regarded colleague, mentor, and leader.”

“Since 2020, through her work in the dean’s office, she has helped to augment support for junior faculty, to strengthen educational offerings, and to articulate and develop research priorities,” Gay wrote. “At the same time, she has expanded knowledge of health policy issues related to women’s health and has built partnerships between Harvard and the World Health Organization, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and the National Cancer Institute, among others.”

“Her ability to imagine, create, and sustain connections will serve her well as she serves the School,” Gay added.

Kim graduated from HSPH in 2001 with a master’s degree in Health Policy and Management and from the Harvard Graduate School of Arts and Sciences in 2005 with a doctorate in Health Policy and Decision Sciences before joining HSPH as professor in 2006. Her research centers around evaluating women’s health policy issues through the development and application of mathematical models. She has used her models to analyze the cost-effectiveness of cervical cancer screening methods across several countries.

Kim was formerly co-chair of the Faculty Council and of the Committee on the Advancement of Women Faculty. She has also served as a member of the Committee on Education Policy and the steering committee of the Zhu Family Center for Global Cancer Prevention.

—Staff writer Miles J. Herszenhorn can be reached at Follow him on Twitter @mherszenhorn.

—Staff writer Claire Yuan can be reached at Follow her on Twitter @claireyuan33.

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