UCSF Chancellor Susan Desmond-Hellmann, MD, MPH, comments on tobacco holdings

By Kristen Bole

Let there be no question: I am strongly anti-tobacco. Over the years, my husband and I have worked with a financial adviser to manage our investment portfolio. Our practice has been to advise him on our broad financial strategy, but we did not get involved in individual stock selections. This led to the investment in the stock of a tobacco company, which conflicts with our values.

Effective Monday, June 28, we have sold all holdings in companies whose primary business includes the sale/manufacture of alcohol, tobacco and firearms. We also have restricted the purchase of any future stocks in this category and will monitor our portfolio to ensure that it reflects our values.

As chancellor of a leading biomedical university, my actions must advance the patient care, discovery and educational mission of UCSF. Therefore, my husband and I will donate all proceeds made from the sale of the tobacco company stock to the UCSF Center for Tobacco Control Research & Education.