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Pediatric researcher named CEO of UNC Health

December 15, 2018
Dr. Wesley Burks

The UNC Board of Governors on Friday named Dr. A. Wesley Burks as chief executive of UNC Health Care, dean of the UNC School of Medicine and vice chancellor for medical affairs at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Burks, who assumes all three positions on Jan. 15, succeeds Dr. Bill Roper, who announced his retirement in May and was appointed in October to serve as interim president of the UNC system.

“It is the highest honor to serve these amazing institutions as CEO and dean,” Burks said in a statement. “I look forward to working with many people, especially our talented team, to develop and communicate a strategic vision and long-term goals for the institution, while strengthening our national and international standing.”

UNC President Margaret Spellings said Burks is “uniquely positioned to immediately develop and execute a strategy that leads our health care system and School of Medicine into the future.”

Burks has spent more than 30 years caring for patients, conducting research, educating young doctors and leading institutions. He joined UNC in 2011 as physician-in-chief of the North Carolina Children’s Hospital and was named chair of the department of pediatrics in 2012. In 2015, he was named executive dean of the School of Medicine.

Burks, who previously worked at Duke University Medical Center and Arkansas Children’s Hospital, is known for his research in the field of pediatric allergy and immunology.

“No greater service can be rendered to the citizens of North Carolina than having the opportunity to receive quality, accessible and affordable health care. It is also our responsibility to teach the next generation of health care professionals while we continue our research that is changing the future of medicine,” UNC-Chapel Hill Chancellor Carol Folt said in a statement. “That is a huge responsibility, and having worked closely with Wesley for years, I know he will lead the UNC School of Medicine and UNC Health Care forward.”

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