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Updated 11:00 AM May 17, 2005




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Tobacco authority named School of Public Health dean

Economist Kenneth Warner, an international authority on tobacco policy, has been named dean of the School of Public Health. His selection was announced May 2 by President Mary Sue Coleman and Provost Paul N. Courant and will be effective July 1, pending approval by the Board of Regents.
(Photo by Peter Smith)

Warner is the Avedis Donabedian Distinguished University Professor of Public Health and founding director of the U-M Tobacco Research Network. Recently he served as the World Bank's representative to negotiations that led to the World Health Organization's health treaty, the unprecedented Framework Convention on Tobacco Control.

"The history of the University of Michigan School of Public Health, and of the field for which we prepare our students, is one of enormous contributions to human welfare," Warner says. "The opportunity to lead one of the world's premier institutions of public health is a great privilege and an even greater responsibility. I look forward to continuing to work, albeit in a different role, with a superb group of faculty, staff and student colleagues."

Warner will be the sixth dean of the school, which was chartered in 1941. He will replace Noreen Clark, who in 2004 announced she would step down June 30 at the completion of her second five-year term to return to full-time research and teaching. Warner assumes leadership for the school's five departments and more than 20 multidisciplinary research initiatives.

"Professor Warner is one of our most accomplished faculty members," Courant says. "I could not be more pleased that someone with Professor Warner's great achievements as a teacher, scholar and administrator is willing to assume the leadership of such an excellent school of public health at a time when public health is of great importance to the University and the nation."

Warner earned his bachelor of arts degree summa cum laude from Dartmouth College in 1968 and master of philosophy and doctoral degrees from Yale University in 1970 and 1974, respectively. He came to U-M in 1972 as a lecturer and rose to the rank of professor in 1983. He served as chair of the Department of Public Health Policy and Administration (precursor to the Department of Health Management and Policy) from 1982-88 and again from 1992-95.

Warner has been a popular teacher in the school's health management and policy department for more than three decades. His more than 200 professional publications have focused on economic and policy aspects of disease prevention and health promotion, with a special emphasis on tobacco and health.

Warner served as senior scientific editor of the 25th anniversary U.S. Surgeon General's report on smoking and health, published in 1989. He is on the editorial boards of four professional journals and chairs the board of the international journal, Tobacco Control. He is a consultant to many governmental bodies, voluntary organizations and businesses.

Warner was a founding member of the board of directors of the American Legacy Foundation and served as president of the Society for Research on Nicotine and Tobacco in 2004-05. He has testified several times before the U.S. Senate and the House of Representatives.

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