New pharmacy dean joins UNTHSC

By Jan Jarvis

Sure Web2S. Suresh Madhavan had just earned an MBA and was working at a good job in India when he made a decision that changed the course of his career.

“I felt unfulfilled so I decided to come to the United States,” he said. “It was really out of a sense of adventure more than anything else.”

But after earning a PhD from Purdue University, Dr. Madhavan knew he had found his calling when he started working as an Assistant Professor at West Virginia University.

“You know you are in the right job when on Sunday evening you look forward to the week ahead in the same way that you looked forward to the weekend,” he said. “If those match, you are in the job you were meant to be in.”

Today, Dr. Madhavan is confident that he has found the right job for him at UNT Health Science Center. The new Dean of the System College of Pharmacy said he looks forward to taking on the new role.

“There are so many opportunities at UNTHSC, and I am excited by the outstanding leadership, commitment to improving lives and diversity of the faculty and student body,” he said. “There is so much to share and learn from each other.”

Dr. Madhavan is a wonderful addition to the HSC team and will serve as an outstanding Dean for the System College of Pharmacy, said Charles Taylor, PharmD, Executive Vice President & Provost.

“He has a proven track record of successful leadership, a ‘student-centric’ philosophy and is committed to our mission of creating solutions for a healthier community,” he said.

When Dr. Madhavan arrived at West Virginia 31 years ago, he did not think he would spend more than a few years there.

But he came to enjoy the work and people so much that he stayed. During his tenure at WVU, Dr. Madhavan mentored over a dozen junior faculty and 23 PhD graduates in health services and outcomes research. He said he is grateful to all of his WVU colleagues and students for making him the person he is today.

Under his leadership, the PhD program in Services and Outcomes Research was established. It is nationally known for its excellence in training, mentoring and job placements.

Since 1994, he has served as Professor and Chairperson of the Department of Pharmaceutical Systems and Policy at WVU.

Throughout his career, Dr. Madhavan has been involved in developing, implementing and evaluating innovative roles for pharmacists. He worked with the WV Public Employees Insurance Agency to establish the job of the pharmacist as an academic detailer, which received the Council of State Governments’ National Award for Innovation.

He also managed a pharmacist call center funded by WV state agencies that helped oversee appropriate use of opioids in the state Medicaid and government health insurance programs. It is the only such program run by a pharmacy school, and has drawn national attention for saving the state millions of dollars. At UNTHSC, he hopes to continue to help students explore the expanding opportunities for pharmacists.

“Pharmacists can work in so many areas. Apart from the traditional community and institutional settings, they can work in managed care environments, academia, the federal government and the pharmaceutical industry,” Dr. Madhavan said. “We need to help our students see and understand what the best fit is for them.”

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