Leadership Transition in the Office of Academic Affairs

May 10, 2022 | By UCSF School of Medicine

Dr. Elena Fuentes-Afflick

As Dean Talmadge E. King, Jr., MD recently announced in a message to the School of Medicine, Elena Fuentes-Afflick, MD, MPH has stepped down as Vice Dean for Academic Affairs for the UCSF School of Medicine, after serving in the role since 2012. As previously announced, Dr. Fuentes-Afflick has been named Vice Dean of the UCSF School of Medicine at ZSFG.

Paul Garcia, MD is serving as interim Vice Dean for Academic Affairs, effective May 1, 2022. A neurologist by training, Dr. Garcia specializes in the treatment of epilepsy and his professional life has been dedicated to building the clinical programs of the UCSF Epilepsy Center. His teaching is centered on clinical epilepsy education for fellows, residents, and students, and his university service has been focused on assuring opportunity for students and faculty across the campus. Dr. Garcia has served as Associate Dean for Academic Affairs since 2014.

Dr. Fuentes-Afflick is professor and vice chair of pediatrics at UCSF and chief of pediatrics at ZSFG. After completing her Pediatric Residency at UCSF and Chief Residency at ZSFG, she obtained a Master’s degree in Public Health at UC Berkeley. She returned to UCSF for Fellowship in Health Policy and subsequently joined the UCSF faculty in 1993.

Dr. Fuentes-Afflick’s research has focused on the issues of acculturation, immigrant health, and health disparities, including work on maternal and infant health among Latino immigrants and the portrayal of body mass images in Latino television media. She also has written extensively on the need to reduce harassment and bias in academic medicine. She has been a passionate advocate for diversity and inclusion in academic pediatrics and academic medicine.

She has served on the National Advisory Council for the National Institute for Child Health and Human Development and the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality. Dr. Fuentes-Afflick is a past president of the American Pediatric Society and the Society for Pediatric Research. In 2010, she was elected to the National Academy of Medicine, where she chaired the Membership committee, was elected to the Governing Council, appointed to the Executive Committee, and recently elected as Home Secretary. In 2020, she was elected to membership in the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.

For the last 10 years, Dr. Fuentes-Afflick has served as Vice Dean for Academic Affairs for the UCSF School of Medicine, where she was responsible for overseeing all academic affairs, including the recruitment, development, and advancement of a diversified academic workforce. She also managed innovative programs for faculty orientation, career development, and leadership training. Working collaboratively with Department Chairs and Institute and Center Directors, Dr. Fuentes-Afflick ensured compliance with appropriate University policies and represented the School of Medicine in communicating with the Office of the Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs and major campus bodies such as the Academic Senate.

In her new role as Vice Dean of ZSFG, Dr. Fuentes-Afflick will utilize her exceptional administrative, organizational, and interpersonal skills to manage the ZSFG Dean’s Office enterprise and to successfully collaborate with a wide array of individuals and organizations throughout UCSF and the City and County of San Francisco. I believe her extensive experience in supporting, advocating for, and mentoring leaders, faculty, learners, and staff, deep understanding of the culture at ZSFG, and unwavering commitment to enhancing diversity, equity, and inclusion throughout academic medicine will make her an invaluable asset, as ZSFG continues to serve as a model for public hospitals and for UCSF.

Please join us in thanking Dr. Fuentes-Afflick for all she has done for School of Medicine faculty in her Academic Affairs role, and welcoming her to her new role at ZSFG.