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Johns Hopkins Appoints Four to Bloomberg Distinguished Professorships

March 30, 2015
CONTACT: Jill Rosen
Office: 443-997-9906
Cell: 443-547-8805


The Johns Hopkins University has named four prominent scientists as its newest Bloomberg Distinguished Professors, unique faculty positions created with a landmark $350 million gift from alumnus and former New York City Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg, to foster interdisciplinary collaboration across the institution’s many divisions.

The scholars –Arturo Casadevall, a microbiologist and immunologist formerly with the Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York City; Christopher Chute, a biomedical informatics expert from the Mayo Clinic; Steven Salzberg, a computational biologist; and Alexander Szalay, a cosmologist and computer scientist – join six Bloomberg Distinguished Professors who were appointed last year.

Each of the four forward-thinking scholars will be affiliated with two or more Johns Hopkins divisions. Here they will leverage their expertise to advance the university’s signature initiative in individualized health, which seeks new ways to use information to target wellness strategies, improve disease detection, and provide effective and affordable treatment.


The Bloomberg Distinguished Professorships were made possible by the gift made in January 2013 by Bloomberg, a 1964 graduate of Johns Hopkins University. The majority of that gift is dedicated to creating 50 new professorships, and is part of a larger effort to facilitate cross-disciplinary work across the university, galvanizing people, resources, research, and educational opportunities around complex global challenges.

We are thrilled to announce the appointments of Arturo Casadevall, Christopher Chute, Steven Salzberg, and Alexander Szalay to these prestigious endowed professorships, which were established with a landmark gift by alumnus Michael R. Bloomberg,” Johns Hopkins President Ronald J. Daniels and Provost Robert C. Lieberman said. “Like the six scholars who were named to the program in 2014, Arturo, Christopher, Steven, and Alex embody the ambitious goals of this effort: to bring together a group of 50 extraordinary cross-disciplinary scholars, empower them to serve as human bridges between our divisions, and entrust them with training future scholars, who will bring a depth and breadth of knowledge across disciplines to the pursuit of groundbreaking ideas.”

Casadevall, who works to develop immunotherapies for infectious diseases and cancer, has joined the faculties of the School of Medicine and the Bloomberg School of Public Health, and is chairman of the school’s W. Harry Feinstone Department of Molecular Microbiology and


Immunology. At the Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York City, he served as chair of the Department of Microbiology & Immunology and was director for the Center of Immunological Sciences.

Chute, who pioneered the use of electronic medical records in genetic research, joined the faculties of the School of Medicine, Bloomberg School of Public Health and the School of Nursing. He is the chief health research information officer of Johns Hopkins Medicine. At the Mayo Clinic, he established the Division of Biomedical Informatics.

, who has developed many influential computational methods for the analysis of genomes, has appointments on the faculties of the School of Medicine, Bloomberg School of Public Health and the Whiting School of Engineering. He is director of the university’s Center for Computational Biology where he is designing new algorithms to use DNA sequencing to help doctors customize patient treatments.


Szalay has appointments on the faculties of the Krieger School of Arts and Sciences and the Whiting School of Engineering. He is director of the university’s Institute for Data Intensive Engineering and Science, where he uses big data and analytics to help solve problems in both physical and biological sciences and engineering. He was an architect of the Sloan Digital Sky Survey archive, one of the world’s most extensive tools for studying the galaxy.

The first Bloomberg Distinguished Professors include Peter Agre, a professor of molecular microbiology and immunology and a co-winner of the 2003 Nobel Prize in Chemistry; Kathryn Edin, a noted sociologist who studies families in poverty; Carol Greider, a professor of molecular biology and genetics and a co-winner of the 2009 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine; Patricia H. Janak, a neuroscientist specializing in associative learning and addiction; Stephen Morgan, a sociologist with expertise in education and inequality; and Kathleen Sutcliffe, an organizational sociologist focused on organizational reliability and safety.


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