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Dean Chiodo announces plans to step down

Citing health-related reasons, Dean Gary Chiodo has announced his intention to resign next year.

Dr. Gary ChiodoDean Chiodo, who came to the School of Dentistry a little more than three years ago, will continue to lead the school for the next 12 months as a national search begins for a new dean, University of Washington Provost Mark Richards said. Earlier, Dean Chiodo notified the dental school’s leadership with a message stating, “This is a very difficult decision for me; however, I have multiple myeloma and, while it is currently in remission following radiation and chemo, at my age, it is not likely to remain there indefinitely.

“I truly appreciate the opportunity provided to me over the past three years, look forward to a very productive year ahead, and will miss my colleagues here. Being the dean of the University of Washington School of Dentistry is an extraordinary honor and privilege.”

“From the moment Dean Chiodo joined the UW in 2018 as interim dean of the School of Dentistry, he demonstrated extraordinary leadership – so much so that President Cauce and I asked him to take on the role permanently in 2020,” Provost Richards said in a message to the UW Board of Regents and School of Dentistry faculty, staff, and students.

Before taking up the reins at the School of Dentistry, the dean had been assistant director of the Center for Ethics in Health Care and professor emeritus in the Department of Community Dentistry at Oregon Health & Science University. From 2012 to 2014, he was interim dean at the OHSU School of Dentistry, which was facing financial challenges.

He stepped into a similar situation at the UW, where the dental school had incurred a series of growing annual operating deficits. He quickly turned the situation around, and in the last three fiscal years, the school has shown a positive balance sheet.

In addition, the school has maintained its high global ranking – seventh in this year’s Shanghai Ranking Consultancy’s Academic Ranking of World Universities and fifteenth in Britain’s Quacquarelli-Symonds World University Rankings. Under Dean Chiodo’s leadership, the school also hosted the relocation of the highly respected Shoreline Community College dental hygiene program. The Shoreline program will expand in the next few years, helping to address a critical shortage in the state’s dental workforce.

The dean will continue to tackle major tasks in the next year, including preparations for the school’s re-accreditation. He will also work on expanding the school’s Campus Dental Center faculty practice and continuing the Campaign for Clinics, a fund-raising effort to improve the school’s aging infrastructure and technology.

From 2014 to 2017, Dean Chiodo served as vice president and system compliance officer/organizational integrity with PeaceHealth, a nonprofit chain of hospitals, medical clinics and laboratories located in Alaska, Washington, and Oregon. At OHSU, he was a longtime faculty member in the Department of Public Health Dentistry, attaining the rank of full professor in 1992. At the UW, he was appointed Professor – Clinical Dental Pathway.

Dean Chiodo was OHSU’s chief integrity officer from 2000 through 2011, overseeing health care compliance, human and animal subject research, environmental health and radiation safety, institutional biosafety, conflict of interest, audit and advisory services, information privacy and security, and compliance education.

The dean obtained his bachelor’s degree in biology from Portland State University in 1974 and his DMD from the University of Oregon Health Sciences Center in 1978. He earned a certificate in health care ethics from the UW School of Medicine in 1992.

He spent two decades practicing at a Portland public health dental clinic that treated the majority of identified HIV-positive persons in Oregon and southwest Washington. He has served on state and national committees related to public health, ethics, and infectious diseases. He has lectured internationally on these issues and has published more than 100 related peer-reviewed articles. In 2002, he was elected as a Fellow of the American College of Dentists.

He has also served on committees with the Oregon Health Division, the Oregon Health Authority, and on the board of the Oregon Public Health Association, and has held membership in the American Dental Association, Academy of General Dentistry, and Oregon Dental Association. He has received OHSU’s Distinguished Faculty Award for Leadership and the Ecumenical Ministries of Oregon HIV Honor Award.

“The School of Dentistry – and the UW more broadly – has greatly benefited from Dean Chiodo’s vision, dedication and skill in building consensus and garnering support from faculty, staff, students, alumni and stakeholders,” Provost Richards said in his message. “It has been a privilege and honor to have worked alongside him, and I look forward to finding a new dean to take this work forward.”