July 6, 2020 — After leading the Department of Pathology, Immunology and Laboratory Medicine to national stature over the past 11 years, Michael Clare-Salzler, M.D., will be stepping down from his position as chair Aug. 1. Jennifer Hunt, M.D., a national leader in the field of pathology as well as leadership development, will take over as chair of the department.
Hunt, currently the chair of the department of pathology and laboratory services at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences, or UAMS, is internationally recognized for her clinical subspecialty expertise in head and neck, endocrine and molecular anatomic pathology. She has served in a number of leadership roles both at her institution and nationally, including chief of staff for the UAMS Integrated Clinical Enterprise, an elected member of the Board of Governors for the College of American Pathologists, president of the Association for Molecular Pathology and president of the College of American Pathologists Foundation.
As the Aubrey Hough Endowed Professor in Pathology at UAMS, Hunt was one of five physicians nationwide chosen in 2019 for the Association of American Medical Colleges Council of Deans Fellowship Program. The AAMC Group on Women in Medicine and Science recognized her with the Award for Emerging Woman Leader, also in 2019.
Before joining UAMS in 2011, Hunt was an associate professor of pathology at Harvard Medical School and associate chief of pathology and chief of anatomic and molecular pathology at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston.
Hunt simultaneously received a medical degree from the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine and a master’s degree in education from the University of Pennsylvania Graduate School of Education. She completed a residency in anatomy pathology and a fellowship in molecular genetic pathology at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia before accepting a position as an assistant professor of pathology and laboratory medicine and otolaryngology at the University of Pittsburgh Medical School.
As an executive leadership coach, Hunt works to develop coaching programming for women physicians, with the goal of increasing the number of women leaders in health care. In addition to producing a TEDx Talk at the University of Arkansas on the topic of imposter syndrome, she published a book earlier this year, titled “Unlocking Your Authentic Self: Overcoming Impostor Syndrome, Enhancing Self-confidence, and Banishing Self-doubt.”
In her new role, Hunt aims to redefine resident and fellow education to fit the needs of today and tomorrow’s pathologists, with the goal of matching training to job expectations and duties.
As the UF College of Medicine welcomes Hunt, the faculty and staff express gratitude to Clare-Salzler for his exemplary leadership since first serving as interim chair of the Department of Pathology, Immunology and Laboratory Medicine in 2009 and then being named permanent chair in 2011. The department has undergone tremendous growth under Clare-Salzler’s leadership, including substantial and sustained growth of research funding and the development of a cancer biology program. Most recently, Clare-Salzler and the molecular team initiated COVID-19 testing by creating a multi-platform framework at UF Health and championing the use of “pooled testing” to dramatically and efficiently increase testing capacity. He has worked closely with the governor’s state task force on SARS-CoV-2 testing and has played a leading role with both the statewide and national pathology community to promote pooled testing.