28 faculty honored at endowed chair investiture

Chancellor Daniel Diermeier and Provost and Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs C. Cybele Raver honored scholars from across Vanderbilt at an endowed chair investiture ceremony on April 8.  

“Endowed chairs are the highest honor that a university bestows on a member of the faculty,” Diermeier said. “Across the academy, they signify that these individuals have achieved—by scholarship, research, artistic creation and teaching—the greatest accolades within their fields.”  

In his remarks Diermeier acknowledged the donors, several of whom were in attendance, who made the endowed positions possible. 

“It is not merely giving; it is the courageous commitment of resources in service of a noble purpose,” he said of the philanthropic support. 

The distinguished faculty members and deans representing eight colleges and schools were presented with medallions that symbolize the attainment of their positions and will become part of their official academic regalia. The cohort represents a broad range of research areas, from mathematics to theology to surgery. Chair holders contribute their expertise to real-world challenges, including climate change, political inequality and access to justice, artificial intelligence and ICU trauma.  

Raver spoke about the goals of endowed chairs: to recognize exceptional accomplishments, deepen investment in this community, and elevate and empower the thought leaders who push the university forward. 

“Endowed chairs represent the pinnacle of the university’s standard for thoughtful leadership and the exchange of ideas,” she said. “Receiving an endowed chair is an invitation to keep going. You have not arrived at the end of your growth, but at a new level of potential and support.” 

Vice Provost for Faculty Affairs Tracey George served as emcee of the ceremony and presented the newly endowed chair holders. 

The following faculty members and deans were celebrated: 

  • Akram Aldroubi, Ph.D., Stevenson Chair #22 
  • Ralf Bennartz, Ph.D., Stevenson Chair #25 
  • Jordan D. Berlin, M.D., Cornelius Abernathy Craig Chair 
  • Lola Chambless, M.D., George S. Allen Chair in Neurological Surgery 
  • Catherine Fuchs, M.D., Bixler-Johnson-Mayes Chair #1 
  • Emily Greble, Ph.D., Nelson O. Tyrone, Jr. Chair in History 
  • William J. Heerman, M.D., William K. Warren Foundation Chair in Medicine 
  • M. Shane Hutson, Ph.D., A.B. Learned Chair in Living State Physics 
  • Stephen Jae Kim, M.D., Phyllis G. and William B. Snyder, M.D. Endowed Chair in Ophthalmology and Visual Sciences 
  • Xenofon Koutsoukos, Ph.D., Thomas R. Walters Chair 
  • John Kuriyan, Ph.D., Mary Geddes Stahlman Chair 
  • Bennett A. Landman, Ph.D., Stevenson Chair #31 
  • Dan Margalit, Ph.D., Stevenson Chair #18 
  • Dana D. Nelson, Ph.D., Nancy Perot Chair 
  • Mayur B. Patel, M.D., Ingram Chair in Surgical Sciences 
  • Galen Perdikis, M.D., G. Patrick Maxwell, M.D. Chair 
  • Yolanda Pierce, Ph.D., Cornelius Vanderbilt Chair #54 
  • Morgan Ricks, J.D., Herman O. Loewenstein Chair in Law 
  • Brian Rini, M.D., Thomas F. Frist Sr. Chair in Medicine #1 
  • Melissa Rose, D.M.A., Mark Wait Dean’s Chair 
  • Eben Rosenthal, M.D., Barry and Amy Baker Chair in Laryngeal, Head and Neck Research 
  • Krishnendu Roy, Ph.D., Bruce and Bridgitt Evans Dean’s Chair in Engineering 
  • Yuya Sasaki, Ph.D., Brian and Charlotte Grove Chair 
  • Jared Speck, Ph.D., Stevenson Chair #21 
  • Thomas Steenburgh, Ph.D., Ralph Owen Professorship 
  • Lauren Sudeall, J.D., David Daniels Allen Distinguished Chair of Law #5 
  • Jessica Trounstine, Ph.D., Centennial Chair #7 
  • David Wallace, M.D., MPH, George Weeks Hale Professorship of Ophthalmology 

Watch the ceremony>>