Oakland University Appoints Pescovitz President

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Oakland University has appointed Ora Hirsch Pescovitz (pictured) president. She begins her new role July 1. Pescovitz becomes the university’s seventh president, succeeding George W. Hynd, who is completing a three-year term.

She has served as senior vice president and U.S. medical leader for Lilly Bio-Medicines at Eli Lilly and Co. since October 2014. Pescovitz has spent nearly her entire adult life in universities since her time as a student at Northwestern University, including the University of Minnesota, Indiana University and the University of Michigan. 

Pescovitz, a renowned pediatric endocrinologist and researcher, has published more than 190 manuscripts and books. Her many awards and honors include:

• Election to the National Academy of Medicine
• Distinguished alumni awards from both the Feinberg School of Medicine and Northwestern University
• NIH Research Career Development Award
• Outstanding Faculty Educator awards from the University of Minnesota
• Indiana School of Medicine Faculty Teaching Award
• Indiana University Teaching Excellence Recognition Award
• Distinguished Hoosier from Indiana Governor Mitchell Daniels
• Sagamore of The Wabash Award for Excellence from Indiana Governor Mitch Daniels
• Crain’s Detroit Newsmaker of the Year (2010)
• Robert H. Williams Distinguished Leadership Award of the Endocrine Society

Pescovitz announced she is establishing a scholarship fund in order to provide support for students. She served as the University of Michigan’s first female Executive Vice President for Medical Affairs and Health System CEO from 2009-2014. There, she led a system that included three hospitals, more than 120 health centers and clinics, and the University of Michigan Medical School. She oversaw $3.3 billion in revenue and $490 million in research funding.

She also spent an extensive, 21-year career at Indiana University in a variety of roles, including Endowed Professor, Executive Associate Dean for Research Affairs at the Indiana University School of Medicine, President and CEO of Riley Hospital for Children, and Interim Vice President for IU’s Research Administration. Much of her research focused on the physiologic and molecular mechanisms responsible for disorders of growth and puberty, and the development of novel therapies for these conditions.

Her late husband, Dr. Mark Pescovitz, was a renowned transplant surgeon at Indiana University. She is the proud mother of three children, two in-law children and three grandchildren. Her significant other is Dr. Dan Walsh, a widower, who is a cardiologist.

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