The dean of the University of Miami's Miller School of Medicine, Pascal Goldschmidt, a renowned cardiologist credited with vaulting the institution to national prominence while overseeing its expansion into the healthcare delivery business, will retire at the end of May after 10 years on the job, UM officials announced on Thursday in a memo to employees and students.
Goldschmidt, 62, who could not be reached for comment, will take a sabbatical to explore opportunities for the Miller School and the UM Health System, UHealth, in other countries and to serve as an adviser to the university, according to the announcement, which did not include a statement from the dean.
Laurence B. Gardner, a physician and UM’s executive dean for education and policy, will serve as interim leader of the medical school while a committee yet to be appointed will launch an international search for a new dean, the announcement read.
Goldschmidt’s retirement is the latest change to his roles with the Miller School and UHealth since the arrival of UM President Julio Frenk in August 2015. In November, UM announced that Goldschmidt would no longer be chief executive of the UHealth system that he helped create.
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Healthcare has since become the University of Miami’s most profitable endeavor, generating more than half of UM’s $2.7 billion in revenues for the year ended May 31, 2015.
Still, Frenk expressed gratitude for Goldschmidt’s decade of leadership, and acknowledged his impact on the university.
“We are so grateful for Pascal’s ambitious vision and for his untiring work to raise the Miller School of Medicine to remarkable new heights in research, education, patient care and community service,” Frenk said in a written statement.
The announcement of Goldschmidt’s retirement, addressed to UM colleagues, was signed by Thomas LeBlanc, executive vice president and provost, and Steve Altschuler, senior vice president of health affairs and chief executive of UHealth.
Goldschmidt was hired in 2006 by UM’s past president, Donna Shalala, who stepped down last summer. He earned a salary of $1.3 million for the year ending May 31, 2014, according to the university’s most recent tax returns.
He is credited with helping to launch UM’s medical school to national prominence with the creation of new centers and institutes, including the Hussman Institute for Human Genomics and the Interdisciplinary Stem Cell Institute.
Goldschmidt’s tenure also was marked by the ambitious creation and growth of UHealth, which included the December 2007 purchase of a 560-bed hospital across the street from the university’s longtime partner, Jackson Memorial Hospital, a 1,498-bed facility where the medical school’s residents train.
UM’s increasing ventures into the local healthcare market strained the university’s 65-year-old partnership with Jackson Health System, Miami-Dade’s public hospital network, transforming the relationship from collaborative to competitive.
But the two institutions have since resolved their differences, said Jackson Health CEO Carlos Migoya, who along with Goldschmidt negotiated an agreement for UM to provide doctors and medical services to Jackson for about $130 million a year.
“Thanks to his leadership, Jackson’s relationship with the university is stronger than ever and ready to evolve in new ways that will make our community healthier and more innovative,” Migoya said in a written statement.
We are so grateful for Pascal’s ambitious vision.
Julio Frenk, president of the University of Miami
Since Goldschmidt’s arrival, healthcare has since become UM’s most profitable endeavor, generating more than half of the university’s $2.7 billion in revenues for the year ending May 31, 2015, according to audited financial statements. UHealth’s hospitals and clinics generated about $1.4 billion in operating revenues in that period.
But the expansion also strained the Miller School of Medicine, whose financial problems led to the layoffs of about 900 full-time and part-time workers in May 2012 — a move that angered faculty, who petitioned at the time for Goldschmidt’s ouster.
The dean’s leadership continued to be an issue for faculty, according to a July 2014 memo from Shalala to Tomas Salerno, a thoracic surgeon and chairman of the faculty senate at the time, and Carl Schulman, a surgeon and burn specialist who chaired the medical school council.
In the memo, Shalala reported on her evaluation of Goldschmidt’s job performance and her decision to retain him as the medical school dean despite “a number of issues raised” in written reviews and in her meetings with faculty.
Shalala alluded to the nature of those issues in her closing, in which she wrote that: “After one year I will formally review how well the Dean has addressed the communications and decision-making issues that have been raised.”
Despite the turmoil, Goldschmidt helped make UM one of 60 National Institutes of Health-designated Clinical and Translational Science Institutes and one of 20 NIH Centers for AIDS Research — opening the door for federal grants to fund further scientific research.
10 Years Pascal Goldschmidt served as dean of UM’s Miller School of Medicine
Goldschmidt also was instrumental in helping to raise tens of millions of dollars for the medical school and UHealth, most notably from the family of Stuart Miller, chairman of the Miami-based home-building and mortgage giant Lennar Corp.
Along with his family, Miller, who chairs UM’s board of trustees and led the medical school’s fund drive, donated $100 million in 2014 and 2015 for a new medical education building and a new UHealth outpatient medical center in Coral Gables. UM’s medical school already was named for the Miller family patriarch, Leonard M. Miller, who founded Lennar in the mid-1950s.
“My entire family and I are thrilled to have had the opportunity to partner with Pascal and contribute to his extraordinary vision,” Stuart Miller said in a written statement.