Gerontology school dean to step down this year

Gerald Davison, dean of the Davis School of Gerontology and executive director of the Andrus Gerontology Center, will resign as dean at the end of the academic year, according to a memorandum from Elizabeth Garrett, provost and vice president of academic affairs.

Davison decided to retire because, in his opinion, the school needed a more reputable dean in the field of gerontology to lead it forward.

After resigning, Davison, who has served as dean since 2007, plans to return to research work. He intends to work closely with the new dean to create a smooth transition and ensure the Davis School remains a global leader in the field of gerontology.

In his five years as dean, Davison has revamped the undergraduate program at the Davis School by adding new majors, including a bachelor of science in lifespan health, and initiated a new fundraising campaign.

The Davis School has also added five new tenured or tenure-track faculty members and received large grants from the National Institute of Aging and the National Institute of Environmental Health Science — among other government organizations and foundations — under Davison’s leadership.

R. Pete Vanderveen, dean of the USC School of Pharmacy, Martin Levine, vice provost for faculty affairs and Garrett will appoint a search committee to find a new dean, according to the memorandum.

Davison’s research has focused on experimental and philosophical analyses of psychopathology and therapeutic change. He is currently researching the relationship between cognition and behavioral and emotional problems. His book Clinical Behavior Therapy, co-authored with Marvin Goldfried, is one of only two publications recognized as Citation Classics by the Social Science Citation Index.

The university plans to announce a new dean this spring, according to the memorandum.