School of Medicine

Welcome Francisco González-Scarano, M.D.



It gives me great pleasure to announce the appointment of Francisco González-Scarano, M.D., as Dean of the School of Medicine and Vice President for Medical Affairs at the UT Health Science Center at San Antonio.  Dr. González will assume his new position on August 1, 2010.


After an extensive national search whereby the Search Committee, led by  Kenneth L. Kalkwarf, D.D.S., M.S.,  Dean of the Dental School, reviewed the applications of more than 60 highly qualified candidates, it was determined that Dr. González’s experience, communication skills, creativity and energy were a superb match with the skills required for success in this position.  Dr. González is an accomplished administrator, clinician, researcher and educator.  I am confident that he will be an outstanding leader for our Health Science Center at this critical juncture in our history.


Dr. González is a nationally recognized leader in neurology.  He currently serves as the Chairman of the Department of Neurology at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, where he has held positions of increasing responsibility since his appointment in 1982 as Assistant Professor of Neurology.  During his 10-year tenure as chair, Dr. González led the university’s Department of Neurology to a top 10 ranking in NIH funding among all departments of neurology in the U.S.  He also has significant experience in improving delivery of care in a large health care system, as well as experience in strategic and financial planning.  He possesses a balanced enthusiasm for the scientific, clinical and educational missions of an academic enterprise.


Dr. González was born in Ponce, Puerto Rico. He majored in economics at Yale University and earned his medical degree at Northwestern University School of Medicine.  He completed an internship in medicine and a residency in neurology at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania and was a fellow at the National Multiple Sclerosis Society. He was also a post-doctoral fellow in the Department of Microbiology at the University of Pennsylvania and at the National Institute for Medical Research in London, UK.


Dr. González is currently funded by the NIH for his work on the neurotropism of viruses such as HIV and La Crosse, and he is the author of more than 160 original papers, chapters and reviews in the area of CNS inflammation, encephalitis, and HIV/AIDS.  He has received the highest accolades for his work, including service to the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS) Council. He was also elected to the Institute of Medicine of the National Academies of Science.


Dr. González will be joined at the Health Science Center by his wife, Barbara J. Turner, M.D., who is a Professor in the Department of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania and currently serves as Executive Deputy Editor of the Annals of Internal Medicine.  Dr. Turner has a national reputation as a leader in health services research on HIV/AIDS, cancer prevention, cardiovascular disease prevention and substance abuse.  She has served as President of the Society of General Internal Medicine and Regent of the American College of Physicians.  She is active as a consultant on several NIH and other federal initiatives.  Dr. Turner will develop a coordinated program in health services research at the Health Science Center in collaboration with many investigators on campus.  A separate notice regarding her appointment will follow soon.


Drs. González and Turner have three daughters.   


On behalf of our entire institution, I want to express our collective appreciation to Dr. Kalkwarf and to each member of the Search Committee who dedicated their time to review and recommend outstanding candidates for this important position of dean.  Furthermore, many other leaders from our hospital partners and the San Antonio community were active and interested participants in meeting the outstanding candidates.


Finally, my deepest appreciation goes to Glenn Halff, M.D., for his leadership and dedicated service as Interim Dean of the School of Medicine during this transition period.  Dr. Halff has done a stellar job to advance the School of Medicine, and I know many in our Health Science Center family will want to join me in a celebratory event to honor him this summer.



William L. Henrich, M.D., M.A.C.P.
Professor of Medicine
The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio