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Dr. Kratochvil named health security endowed chair

Image with caption: Christopher Kratochvil, MD

Christopher Kratochvil, MD

The University of Nebraska, UNMC and the NU Foundation, through the generosity of an anonymous lead donor, have established an endowed Global Center for Health Security Distinguished Chair. Christopher Kratochvil, MD, associate vice chancellor for clinical research, vice president for research at Nebraska Medicine and executive director for clinical research at the Global Center for Health Security, will serve as inaugural chair, pending approval by the University of Nebraska Board of Regents at its April 9 meeting.

The Global Center for Health Security (GCHS) is the umbrella organization encompassing many aspects of biopreparedness, infectious diseases and special pathogen research, education and clinical care at UNMC and its primary clinical partner, Nebraska Medicine.

"I am humbled by this opportunity to serve as the inaugural Global Center for Health Security Distinguished Chair, and incredibly appreciative to the donor," Dr. Kratochvil said. "I am also incredibly proud to be a part of the GCHS team, as more than anything else this endowed chair is a reflection on the importance of the efforts of the entire team."

Dele Davies, MD, senior vice chancellor for academic affairs, said that Dr. Kratochvil is the ideal candidate to serve as inaugural endowed chair.

"Dr. Kratochvil has a strong track record of research, teaching, mentorship and leadership. As one of the five co-directors of our Global Center for Health Security, Dr. Kratochvil has made significant contributions to Nebraska, the nation and the world in the area of health security, especially during the 2014 Ebola outbreak, and the current COVID-19 pandemic," Dr. Davies said.

Dr. Kratochvil is one of the principal investigators of the $26 million Training, Simulation and Quarantine Services (TSQC) grant, and is a key liaison between UNMC and the U.S. federal government on a number of biodefense project collaborations. As the UNMC and Nebraska Medicine institutional official, he works closely with the UNMC Institutional Review Board to support the Special Pathogens Research Network funded by the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response. Dr. Kratochvil co-leads the CDC Project Firstline initiative at UNMC and Nebraska Medicine, as well as UNMC's Global Virus Network Center of Excellence.

UNMC Chancellor Jeffrey P. Gold, MD, said that the anonymous donor, in establishing the endowed Global Center for Health Security Distinguished Chair, has given an even greater gift than he or she knows.

"These endowed chairs are incredibly valuable to our institution, allowing us to recruit the very best in the country, and to retain the very best in the country, like Dr. Kratochvil," Dr. Gold said. But, more so, the endowment of these chairs is a statement.

"It is a statement that the community really cares, and appreciates the incredible dedication of our faculty here at UNMC," Dr. Gold said.

Amy Volk, senior vice president for UNMC development at the NU Foundation, said the anonymous donor is a strong believer in UNMC's role as a world leader in biopreparedness and health security, and proud to play a part, behind the scenes, in the medical center's success.

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