Dean Ford Hosts First ‘Meet and Greet’ Session

Moriane Joseph, ARNP, was excited to say hello to Henri R. Ford, M.D., M.H.A., the recently appointed dean of the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine.

“I have the greatest respect for his recovery work in Haiti after the terrible 2010 earthquake,” said Joseph, a nurse practitioner in the Division of Gastroenterology. “I am also of Haitian descent, and it is an honor to welcome him to our school.”

Joseph was among more than 100 Miller School staff members, students and faculty who had an opportunity to chat with Ford at the first of three “Meet and Greet” sessions on Wednesday, August 15, on the Schoninger Research Quadrangle.

“It is very important for me to go out and meet our people in the trenches,” said Ford, who joined the Miller School nine weeks ago. “They see the issues and have creative ideas about improving our operations and making this an even better environment for everyone. As I learn from you, I will take that information back to senior leadership and the boardroom, as we work together to make this one of the most important academic medical centers in the nation.”

Edward Abraham, M.D., Executive Vice President for Health Affairs and CEO of UHealth – the University of Miami Health System, introduced Ford and gave a brief account of his personal and professional history.

“He brings a wonderful set of skills in research, surgery and education, along with a truly visionary leadership style,” said Abraham.

One of the attendees who enjoyed chatting with Ford was Karl Muench, M.D., professor of medicine and a specialist in clinical genetics.

“As a member of the faculty for 53 years, I wanted to get to know him personally,” Muench said. “Our school has grown tremendously since the days when every one of our faculty knew each other.”

Wearing a bow tie that reflected Ford’s own trademark bow tie, Yanatha Desouvre, ERP trainer in Information Technology, said the dean was an inspirational role model for South Florida’s Haitian community.

“It says a lot about the University of Miami to embrace Dean Ford as the leader of the Miller School,” he said. “It speaks directly to our core values of compassion, inclusion and excellence.”

UM alumna Chelsea Chico, who just graduated with a B.S. in biology and is now a program coordinator in the Division of Adolescent Medicine, had a bit of advice for Ford.

“I suggested that he find time to get out into the community,” she said. “That’s so important for getting to the root of the public health issues in South Florida.”

A gallery of photos from the event is available here.

Two additional “Meet and Greet” events with Dean Ford will take place on Friday, August 17, and Thursday, August 30 — both on the Schoninger Research Quadrangle from noon to 1:30 p.m. Pizza and refreshments will be served.

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