Nancy J. Rusch, Ph.D., has been appointed executive associate dean for research in the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences (UAMS) College of Medicine.
“Dr. Rusch will provide strong leadership for the College of Medicine research enterprise, as she has done while serving as interim executive associate dean since Dr. Richard Morrison’s retirement at the end of last year,” said Christopher T. Westfall, M.D., executive vice chancellor of UAMS and dean of the College of Medicine.
Rusch will continue to lead the Department of Pharmacology and Toxicology, where she has served as professor and chair since 2005. As chair, she has overseen growth in research funding and the development of nationally recognized faculty who are major contributors to research at UAMS and leaders in medical and graduate student education.
Rusch’s contributions to UAMS extend well beyond her department. She is a key leader in the Translational Research Institute, where she developed and co-leads TRI’s Health Sciences Innovation and Entrepreneurship (HSIE) Postdoctoral Scholars Training Program and serves as TRI co-director of Translational Workforce Development. In her recent role as interim executive associate dean for research, she oversaw the launch of 1-2-3 GO, a new grant program for research teams from multiple departments and colleges.
She has served in numerous other leadership roles, including chair of the College of Medicine Council of Department Chairs, chair of the Basic Science Chairs and founder of the Cardiovascular Interest Group. Rusch has also contributed to numerous search committees for department chairs, UAMS chancellors and other leadership positions, including the next College of Medicine dean, Susan Smyth, M.D., Ph.D.
A leading expert in vascular ion channel remodeling in hypertension, Rusch has been a member of numerous study sections and special review panels for the National Institutes of Health and the American Heart Association. She is a longstanding member and leader in the American Society of Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics and a past president of the organization’s Cardiovascular Pharmacology Division.
Rusch received her doctorate at the Mayo Clinic and University of Minnesota. She completed postdoctoral fellowships in pharmacology at the University of Iowa and in physiology and biophysics at the University of Cincinnati. She served on the faculty at the Medical College of Wisconsin from 1987 until her recruitment to UAMS. Rusch has received numerous honors since joining UAMS, including the Chancellor’s Teaching Award in 2011, the Graduate School Best Faculty Award in 2014, and the College of Medicine Educational Innovation Award last year.