By McGill Reporter Staff
When a senior leadership post opens up at McGill, a global search for elite candidates ensues, covering the far corners of the academic community. In naming David H. Eidelman as the university’s new Vice-Principal (Health Affairs) and Dean of Medicine, McGill has shown that sometimes the very best person for the job can be found right here at home.
A McGill graduate and a native Montrealer, Dr. Eidelman currently serves as Chair of the University’s Department of Medicine. He has been a leading clinician-scientist based at the Meakins-Christie Laboratories, where his work has focused on the development of important models of asthma in animals and the application of tissue culture techniques to the study of the mechanisms of respiratory disease.
“We are delighted that an administrator, teacher, clinician and researcher of Dr. Eidelman’s outstanding stature will assume the important role of McGill Dean of Medicine and Vice-Principal (Health Affairs),” said Principal Heather Munroe-Blum. “David has demonstrated superb leadership in his Department, in the Faculty and, broadly, in the research, clinical and teaching milieux and he will bring his deep intelligence, high standards, strong executive ability and collegial style to this key new role.”
Currently President of the Canadian Association of Professors of Medicine, Dr. Eidelman has been an active leader in clinical medicine and research in Canada and internationally. In addition to his research and leadership skills, Dr. Eidelman brings to this position extensive knowledge of the health care system having served as Physician-in-Chief at the McGill University Health Centre (MUHC) since 2004 and previously as the Director of McGill’s renowned Division of Respiratory Diseases.
“I am very excited to be tackling this challenging position as we make a major transition to new hospital facilities,” Dr. Eidelman said. “The teaching of medicine and the development of new forms of patient care are changing rapidly and I look forward to McGill contributing at the leading edge of these new opportunities, and to building on the remarkable work of each of my predecessors.
“McGill’s Faculty of Medicine enjoys exceptional international recognition and has a remarkable history. It is humbling to be asked to lead it,” he said. “No one does it alone and I am looking forward to building partnerships within and outside of the University. I am most eager to continue working with an incredibly talented and hard-working team as we move ahead to lead in these new frontiers.”
Focusing on airway physiology
Following completion of his undergraduate medical education at McGill in 1979, Dr. Eidelman pursued training in internal medicine at the University of Toronto, first at St. Michael’s Hospital and subsequently at the Toronto General Hospital. He then returned to McGill to undertake advanced training in respiratory medicine. Upon completion of his sub-specialty training, Dr. Eidelman undertook research training first at the Royal Victoria Hospital and subsequently at the Meakins-Christie Laboratories.
Dr. Eidelman then joined the faculty of the Dept. of Medicine in the Respiratory Division and as a member of the Meakins-Christie Laboratories. His research interests have been focused on the physiology of the airways, particularly as applied to inflammatory disorders like asthma and cystic fibrosis. His current work focuses on the immunology of obstructive lung diseases.
In his role as Chair, Dr. Eidelman supervises a sprawling department based in McGill’s teaching hospitals, primarily the McGill University Health Centre (MUHC), the Jewish General Hospital, St. Mary’s Hospital Center and the Douglas Mental Health University Institute. Organized into 13 divisions, the Department is the major clinical teaching unit of the Faculty of Medicine and generates more than $40 million in peer-reviewed research grants per year.
Dr. Eidelman will assume his responsibilities as Dean and Vice-Principal on Jan. 1, 2012, after returning from his leave at the Brigham and Women’s Hospital, a Teaching Affiliate of Harvard Medical School.