Associate Vice Chancellor of Research to Leave UCSF

Clay Johnston to Become Dean of University of Texas at Austin's School of Medicine

Clay Johnston, MD, PhD, will be leaving his postion as associate vice chancellor of research and director of the UCSF Clinical Translational Science Institute to become the inaugural dean of the the Dell School of Medicine at The University of Texas at Austin.

By Laura Kurtzman on January 21, 2014

Clay Johnston, MD, PhD, a physician-scientist who expanded UC San Francisco’s patient-centered research through his leadership of the Clinical Translational Science Institute (CTSI) and the new Center for Healthcare Value, is leaving at the end of February to become the inaugural dean of the Dell School of Medicine at The University of Texas at Austin.

Clay Johnston, MD, PhD

A neurologist and epidemiologist, as well as associate vice chancellor for research, Johnston has been at UCSF since his residency 20 years ago. He has published widely in his field – the prevention and treatment of stroke and transient ischemic attack – and treats patients with cerebral aneurysms, vascular malformations and stroke, in addition to directing the hospital stroke service.

Johnston is the principal investigator of a $112 million Clinical and Translational Science Award from the National Institutes of Health aimed at helping scientists bring experimental research into the clinic.

“Clay has played a singular role in UCSF’s drive to accelerate translational research to improve human health,” said Jeffrey Bluestone, PhD, executive vice chancellor and provost at UCSF. “He’s a steady and unflappable leader, and this, along with his research acumen, has enabled UCSF to forge critical partnerships in the biotech industry and with foundations and private funders.”

Johnston, who received his medical degree from Harvard and did his internship at Massachusetts General Hospital, said UCSF was a great training ground for him, and it will continue to be a place where those he mentored and supervised can develop.

Deborah Grady, MD, MPH

“I'm proud of what the people of CTSI have done in the last few years,” he said. “I hate to leave such a strong team and so many great teachers and friends but know that in a place like UCSF their work will only accelerate.  ”

In his new job, he will be building a medical school and hospital, literally from the ground up. The first class of students will enter in the fall of 2016.

CTSI’s co-director, Deborah Grady, MD, MPH, will become interim director of the CTSI. Grady is a professor of medicine, as well as epidemiology and biostatistics. She directs the UCSF/Mount Zion Women's Health Clinical Research Center and the UCSF Women's Health Faculty Development Program. 

Photos by Susan Merrell