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David S. Stephens to serve as Emory’s interim executive vice president for health affairs
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Nikki Troxclair
Assistant Vice President, Health Sciences Communications
Dr. David S. Stephens

Dr. David S. Stephens

Dr. David S. Stephens will serve as Emory University’s interim executive vice president for health affairs (EVPHA) beginning Sept. 1, President Gregory L. Fenves announced.  Stephens has served as vice president for research in Emory’s Woodruff Health Sciences Center (WHSC) since 2007 and as chair of the Department of Medicine in the Emory School of Medicine since 2013.

As interim EVPHA, Stephens will be the senior executive for WHSC and will oversee the Emory Healthcare system strategy.

“Dr. Stephens is an outstanding leader who understands the WHSC and Emory Healthcare mission on a fundamental level, and he will bring his expertise in teaching, research and leadership to his new role,” Fenves says.

Stephens joined the Department of Medicine faculty in 1982 and was named director of the Division of Infectious Diseases in 1992, a position he held for 21 years. In addition to chairing the Department of Medicine, he currently serves as the Stephen W. Schwarzmann Distinguished Professor of Medicine and is also a professor of microbiology and immunology in the School of Medicine and professor of epidemiology in Emory's Rollins School of Public Health. He previously served as interim dean of the School of Medicine from 2016 to 2017.

In 2021, the Atlanta Business Chronicle presented Stephens with its Health Care Heroes Lifetime Achievement Award for his longstanding career in infectious diseases and his unwavering dedication to bettering lives and training future generations of scientists.

“I am honored to take on this very important role. Advancing the goals of WHSC and of Emory University — to provide the highest quality patient care and perform impactful research, education and public service in a collaborative, inspirational environment that attracts and retains talented people — will remain the focus,” says Stephens

Stephens will succeed Dr. Jonathan Lewin, who announced in November that he would step down from his roles as executive vice president for health affairs of Emory University, executive director of the Woodruff Health Sciences Center, and CEO and chairman of Emory Healthcare to rejoin the Emory faculty.

In May, Fenves announced that he had decided to hold off on filling the EVPHA role permanently by summer, as originally planned, in order to first clarify the ways the Emory University Board of Trustees and Emory Healthcare Board of Directors will collaborate with the EVPHA moving forward. At the time, Lewin agreed to extend his leadership of the WHSC and Emory Healthcare through the end of the fiscal year, which is Aug. 31.

“I am grateful that Dr. Lewin has been able to extend his service in both of these roles through the summer, ensuring a smooth transition for our new leadership,” Fenves says. “He has gone above and beyond for Emory.”

As previously announced, Dane Peterson, president and chief operating officer of Emory Healthcare, will become interim CEO of Emory Healthcare starting Sept. 1. Peterson will report to Stephens and will be responsible for the overall performance of the Emory Healthcare enterprise.

“With new leadership in place to start the fiscal year, I am looking forward to all that the staff, doctors, researchers, nurses and faculty at WHSC and Emory Healthcare will accomplish,” Fenves says.

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