Dr. Jennifer L. Hunt named interim College of Medicine dean

Published: December 15th, 2023

Category: Memos

David. R. Nelson, M.D., Senior Vice President for Health affairs, UF & President, UF Health

Dear Colleagues,

I am very pleased to announce that Jennifer L. Hunt, M.D., M.Ed., has been named the interim dean of the UF College of Medicine, effective Jan. 2.

In this role, Dr. Hunt will be engaged in the crucial work of enhancing continued growth for all three of the College’s core academic missions. She will oversee the full implementation of the new faculty compensation plan, the expansion and clinical integration of our quality and patient safety initiative, clinical service line development, programs for faculty and staff retention, strategic expansion of our research enterprise and innovation in our educational programs. 

The current chair of the college’s department of pathology, immunology and laboratory medicine and UF Health Shands chief of the medical staff, Dr. Hunt will bring a wealth of longstanding administrative experience to this role. For the past year, her expanded responsibilities involved serving as the chief medical administrative officer of the credentialed medical staff, advising on clinical policies and best practices. She also has been responsible for the application and enforcement of the medical staff bylaws, hospital policies, rules and regulations of the hospital and its medical staff and for the oversight of the Medical Executive Committee and the Credentials Committee. Her collaborative spirit that has helped to support and transform medical staff affairs across specialties will position her well to step into leading the College of Medicine.

An internationally known head and neck and molecular pathologist, Dr. Hunt joined UF in 2020 after serving for nearly a decade as the Aubrey J. Hough Endowed Professor and chair of pathology at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences, where she was also the chief of staff, chair of the credentials committee and chair of the professionalism committee.

She has authored more than 160 peer-reviewed scientific publications in her subspecialty and has also published on medical staff affairs, professional practice evaluation and quality improvement. She is a fellow of the College of American Pathologists and has served in elected board of director roles for various organizations, including the Association for Molecular Pathologists, the Association of Pathology Chairs and the Florida Society of Pathology.

Dr. Hunt received her medical degree and a concurrent master’s degree in education from the University of Pennsylvania, where she also completed a residency in anatomic pathology and a fellowship in molecular genetic pathology. She has held academic appointments and leadership roles at the University of Pittsburgh, the Cleveland Clinic and Harvard Medical School/Massachusetts General Hospital.

She played a pivotal role in our COVID-19 response, leading efforts to provide viral testing for the entire university. Under her guidance, the department went from performing 300 to 500 tests a day to an all-time high capability of performing over 9,000 tests per day in January 2021.

In addition to her medical expertise, Dr. Hunt is an International Coach Federation-trained and certified executive coach. She has deep experience with coaching in health care, with a particular emphasis on coaching for leadership development and professionalism.

Before coming to UF, Dr. Hunt served a six-year term as the elected chief of staff at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences, where she created a robust structure for credentialing providers and developed a streamlined monitoring and competency system for the practice.

The UF College of Medicine, Florida’s highest-ranked medical school and No. 14 among all public medical schools in the country, is the largest college within our academic health center, with 28 research-oriented and clinical science departments and the School of Physician Assistant Studies.

As I shared earlier this fall, our strategic vision, themed Life Transformed, remains a guidestar for us as we continue our drive to ensure excellence and growth across our missions of research, teaching, patient care and community service. I remain very appreciative of your efforts to embody our values on behalf of our patients and each other. Together we are stewarding the College of Medicine and UF Health to an even brighter future.

In the coming weeks, I will work closely with Dr. Hunt to plan for a smooth transition relative to her department and chief of staff responsibilities. Details will be shared as those plans are finalized.

David R. Nelson, M.D.
Senior Vice President for Health Affairs, UF &
President, UF Health

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