A. Eugene Washington, chancellor for health affairs at Duke University and president and chief executive officer of the Duke University Health System, will step down from his roles on June 30, 2023, per a Wednesday release.
Washington has held these positions since 2015. During his tenure, he led the transition from Duke Medicine to Duke Health, seeking to “extend Duke’s reach and impact beyond medical care into other determinants of population health improvement,” according to the release.
At Duke, Washington led efforts to improve Duke Health’s research programs, expand the reach of Duke Health’s infrastructure and services across the Research Triangle, and advance equity efforts within the organization. Washington also helped found the Duke Margolis Center for Health Policy.
Under Washington’s leadership, Duke University School of Medicine rose to third in the nation for National Institutes of Health funding, up from 13th in 2015, per the release. Duke’s School of Nursing research has risen from ninth in 2015 to being ranked fifth today in NIH funding.
Before coming to Duke, Washington served as the executive vice chancellor and provost at the University of California, San Francisco and as vice chancellor for health sciences, Dean of the David Geffen School of Medicine, and CEO of UCLA Health at the University of California, Los Angeles. He is a member of the National Academy of Medicine and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.
“For those of you who are wondering why now, my decision is principally driven by my desire to devote more attention to my personal life. Last month, I turned 72 years-of-age. Young! Earlier this month, Marie and I celebrated 40 years of marriage, and we are thrilled about spending more time together. And as some of you know, we have a new granddaughter. I imagine that this personal renewal will be invigorating,” Washington wrote in an email to colleagues Wednesday. “At the same time, I also believe that institutional renewal is good. In fact, in dynamic industries and organizations such as ours with rapid, dramatic change afoot, renewal is a constant imperative.”
“Gene Washington’s tenure will be remembered as among the most consequential periods in the history of Duke Health, both in its achievement and for its exemplary demonstration of leadership in moments of challenge,” President Vincent Price said in the release. “At no time was this more apparent than with the rapid mobilization of our research, education, patient care and community health missions to equitably treat thousands of COVID-19 patients and safeguard public health locally and globally.”
Duke will announce plans for a national search for Washington’s successor in the next few weeks.
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Anisha Reddy is a Trinity junior and a senior editor of The Chronicle's 118th volume.
Milla Surjadi is a Trinity junior and a diversity, equity and inclusion coordinator of The Chronicle's 119th volume. She was previously editor-in-chief for Volume 118.