It is with great appreciation that we announce that Harris Berman, M.D., F.A.C.P., will be stepping down from his position as dean of Tufts University School of Medicine effective December 31, 2019. We thank him for his commitment and dedication to the entire Tufts community and know that he will be missed by everyone who has had the privilege of working with him.
Dr. Berman’s career at Tufts began over fifty years ago as an instructor. He has served admirably as a teacher, mentor, and advocate for physicians, professors, scholars, alumni, colleagues, and students across the School of Medicine and the university. Dr. Berman has been dean of the School of Medicine since October 2011, having served as interim dean and vice dean for academic and clinical affairs since December 2009. He was previously dean of Public Health and Professional Degree Programs and served as chair of the Department of Public Health and Family Medicine from 2003 to 2008.
Over the past seventeen years, Dr. Berman spearheaded the expansion of the school’s Global Health Program, led the development of a unique training program for rural doctors in Maine, and helped attract key clinical and basic science leadership to the School of Medicine.
Before coming to Tufts University, Dr. Berman was a pioneer in the development of non-profit managed care in New England and served for seventeen years as the chief executive officer of Tufts Health Plan. During that tenure, Tufts Health Plan grew from 60,000 to over a million members. Prior to joining Tufts Health Plan, he co-founded the Matthew Thornton Health Plan in Nashua, New Hampshire, one of the first HMOs in New England.
Dr. Berman served as chairman of the board of the Massachusetts Association of HMOs and of the Celebrity Series of Boston. He has also been a director of the American Association of Health Plans and Tufts Medical Center, as well as commissioner for the Group Insurance Commission and a member of the board of directors of Tufts Health Care Institute, New England Healthcare Institute, The Wolfson Foundation, and Tufts Health Plan. He is currently a member of the board of directors of Tufts Medical Center, and its parent company, Wellforce.
A graduate of Harvard College and Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons, Dr. Berman served as a resident on the Harvard Medical Service of Boston City Hospital and at Tufts-New England Medical Center, where he also completed an infectious disease fellowship under Dr. Louis Weinstein. He is a fellow of the American College of Physicians.
Dr. Berman embodies the university’s values of active citizenship and internationalism through his experience as a Peace Corps physician in India and a consultant to the U.S. Agency for International Development on several projects. He has effectively used that experience to promote a global health agenda for the School of Medicine.
While a search for a new dean is underway, Vice Dean Peter Bates, M.D., will serve as dean ad interim effective January 1, 2020. Before joining the Tufts University School of Medicine leadership team in July, Dr. Bates was senior vice president, chief academic officer and academic dean at Maine Medical Center, where he led the partnership with Dr. Berman for the Maine Track program. He is a professor of medicine at Tufts and has been a faculty member for ten years.
We are grateful that Dr. Berman has also forged relationships for Tufts with institutions and funders in China, Taiwan, and India. After he steps down from the deanship, Dr. Berman will work part-time for the advancement office, fundraising for the School of Medicine and for the university at large and providing development training to academic leadership.
Please join us as we honor Dr. Berman for his outstanding leadership and commitment to Tufts.