Dr. Puliafito named dean at Keck School of Medicine

September 6, 2007

Los Angeles-Carmen A. Puliafito, MD, MBA, has been named dean of the Keck School of Medicine at the University of Southern California (USC), effective Nov. 1.

Los Angeles-Carmen A. Puliafito, MD, MBA, has been named dean of the Keck School of Medicine at the University of Southern California (USC), effective Nov. 1. The appointment is for a term of 5 years and 8 months.

“We believe this appointment heralds a moment of transformation for the Keck School,” said Max Nikias, PhD, provost and senior vice president for academic affairs at USC. “Dr. Puliafito will now take charge as a researcher, teacher, clinician, inventor, administrator, and fundraiser of singular quality-able to advance the school to the front ranks of American medical schools in terms of research, teaching, and patient care.”

Since 2001, Dr. Puliafito has been director of the Bascom Palmer Eye Institute and chairman of the Department of Ophthalmology of the Miller School of Medicine, University of Miami. In that position, he has overseen the growth of the eye institute’s faculty size from 33 to 70 members, an increase in funding from the National Institutes of Health that moved the department from the 34th to the 14th position among peer departments across the country within a 3-year span, and the reclaiming of the top position in U.S. News & World Report’s hospital rankings in the specialty of ophthalmology. Also, he guided fundraising and development of a $22 million, seven-acre campus in Palm Beach Gardens, FL.

Of his new role, Dr. Puliafito said, “I was attracted by USC’s extraordinary commitment to the Keck School’s growth and success, a dynamic clinical and basic science faculty, superb new hospital and laboratory facilities, and USC’s unparalleled support for meeting the health-care needs of the Los Angeles community.”

Dr. Puliafito also will serve as professor of ophthalmology and health management and holder of the May S. and John Hooval Dean’s Chair in Medicine.

His research interests include vitreoretinal diagnostics, laser technologies, ophthalmic education, and ophthalmology practice management, and he maintains an active practice in retinal consultation and surgery.

As dean, Dr. Puliafito will succeed Brian Henderson, MD, a cancer epidemiologist who will remain on the medical school’s faculty as a full-time researcher.