Dentistry dean Laurie McCauley recommended as next provost


President Mary Sue Coleman is recommending the appointment of Laurie K. McCauley, dean of the School of Dentistry, as the University of Michigan’s next provost and executive vice president for academic affairs.

McCauley’s appointment will be considered by the Board of Regents at its March 24 meeting on the Ann Arbor campus. (Update: Regents approved McCauley’s appointment March 24.)

Photo of Laurie McCauley
Laurie McCauley

She would follow Susan M. Collins, who will step down as provost in May to become president and CEO of the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston. McCauley’s appointment would be effective May 16 and run through June 30, 2023, or until a new provost is installed.

“Dean McCauley’s proven leadership skills, depth of experience and demonstrated commitment to the University of Michigan make her ideally suited for the responsibilities of provost and executive vice president for academic affairs,” Coleman said. “She will be an important partner for the next president as they transition into the role and launch a search for a permanent provost.”

McCauley is the William K. and Mary Anne Najjar Professor of Periodontics and professor of dentistry in the School of Dentistry, with an additional appointment as a professor of pathology in the Medical School.

She has served as dean of the School of Dentistry since 2013. During her almost nine-year tenure, she has galvanized the school around a shared vision that focuses on five domains: people, education, research and discovery, patient care, and responsible growth and sustainability.

“I look forward to working with the U-M community to continue to elevate our academic programs and celebrate the breadth and depth of accomplishments across our campus,” McCauley said. 

Under her leadership and support, the school has been ranked No. 1 in the United States for seven consecutive years by QS World University Rankings, and No. 1 in the world for five consecutive years by Shanghai Ranking Consultancy.

McCauley oversaw a transformative $142 million expansion and renovation of the school’s clinical and education facilities, with funding secured from the state of Michigan, institutional and donor sources.

She is one of the longest-serving deans among the university’s current academic leadership group, is the chair of the health sciences deans council and has been the academic co-lead on the planning efforts for the university’s next major capital campaign.

She earned all of her degrees from The Ohio State University, including a Bachelor of Science in education, Doctor of Dental Surgery and Master of Science in dentistry, and a Ph.D. in veterinary pathobiology. She was in private practice limited to periodontics in Marysville, Ohio, from 1988-91.

McCauley joined U-M as an assistant professor of dentistry in 1992, becoming an associate professor in 1996 and professor in 2001. From 2002-12, she chaired the Department of Periodontics and Oral Medicine. In 2002, she was appointed associate professor of pathology in the Medical School, becoming a professor in 2009.

She has had several visiting scientist and visiting professor appointments, including the Institut de Genetique et de Biologie Moleculaire et Cellulaire, the Ecole Normale Superieure de Lyon, and the Center for Experimental Therapeutics and Reperfusion Injury, Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Harvard Medical School.

For more than 25 years, McCauley has led an active research program in hormonal controls of bone remodeling, parathyroid hormone anabolic actions in bone and prostate cancer skeletal metastasis.

She is a member of the National Academy of Medicine and among her many other recognitions are the inaugural Paula Stern Achievement award from the American Society for Bone and Mineral Research, a distinguished scientist award from the International Association for Dental Research, a distinguished alumna award from The Ohio State University, and the Norton M. Ross Award for Excellence in Clinical Research from the American Dental Association.


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