July 28, 2023

Dr. Michael Hudgens

Dr. Michael Hudgens

The UNC-Chapel Hill Gillings School of Global Public Health has appointed Michael Hudgens, PhD, as chair of the Department of Biostatistics, effective August 1.

Hudgens has been on faculty in the biostatistics department since 2004. He became a full professor in 2016 and has served as associate chair since 2021. He also has served as director of the UNC Center for AIDS Research Biostatistics Core since 2010.

“It is an incredible honor to be named the next chair of our department. Serving on the biostatistics faculty for the past two decades has been an absolute privilege,” Hudgens said. “I’m especially thankful to our outgoing chair, Dr. Lisa LaVange, for the invitation to serve as associate chair — her exceptional leadership serves as a model for all future chairs. I look forward to building on our department’s legacy of excellence in statistical research and practice to improve public health.”

Hudgens brings to the role his world-class experience in collaborative research and statistical methodology development related to studies of infectious diseases. He has co-authored more than 300 peer-reviewed papers in statistical and biomedical journals, is an associate editor for Biometrics and serves as an elected fellow of the American Statistical Association.

“Dr. Hudgens has served the biostatistics department, the Gillings School, the University and the field with dedication, enthusiasm and impact,” said Nancy Messonnier, MD, dean and Bryson Distinguished professor at the Gillings School. “He is widely recognized as a highly productive and innovative researcher and an award-winning educator and mentor whose efforts are making a difference in public health now and shaping the future. We are fortunate to have him in this key role during a pivotal time for biostatistics, data science and public health.”

Earlier this year, Hudgens was honored with one of the Gillings School’s most prestigious recognitions: the John E. Larsh Jr. Award for Mentorship.

“Dr. Hudgens is one of the most patient, thoughtful and respectful professors in the department. He always goes out of his way to help students,” one nominator wrote. “When I struggled with a research project, he patiently answered all of my questions, encouraged me and served as a great role model in terms of work ethic. Because of him, I grew both intellectually and personally.”

“I am delighted to see Michael appointed as the seventh chair in the biostatistics department’s 74-year history,” said outgoing chair Lisa LaVange, PhD. “He will be a stellar leader! He has already contributed so much to our mission through his research, mentoring, teaching and practice. He has a solid vision for the future of our field and is ready to take on new challenges — he has my sincerest congratulations and best wishes for the future.”

Contact the UNC Gillings School of Global Public Health communications team at sphcomm@unc.edu.

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