Reappointment of Daniel J. Rader, MD, as Chair of the Department of Genetics

November 9, 2020

To:Penn Medicine Faculty, Students, and Staff

From:J. Larry Jameson, MD, PhD
Jonathan A. Epstein, MD

We are pleased to announce the reappointment of Dr. Daniel J. Rader for a second six-year term as Chair of the Department of Genetics. The reappointment follows a review process that included a survey of departmental faculty about their experiences and perspectives, followed by an Internal Committee Review.

Home to 32 standing faculty members and 32 faculty with secondary appointments, the Department of Genetics has expanded in size and scope under Dr. Rader’s impactful leadership. New paradigms for co-recruitment over the past 6 years have fostered a high level of interdisciplinary, collaborative research. With the emergence of a strong translational component focused on human genetics, new genomic technologies, and computational biology, the Department has become a nationally and internationally recognized leader in both fundamental, discovery-based biological investigation and translational research in genetics and genomics.

The review highlighted Dr. Rader’s success in recruitment, in diversifying the portfolio of research conducted by the department’s faculty, and his accomplishment in creating the Penn Medicine Biobank. The Department has strong ties to both HUP and CHOP and has created the Autism Spectrum Program of Excellence and the Center for Global Genomics and Health Equity.

With an outstanding cohort of 33 graduate students, 24 postdoctoral fellows, and 10 undergraduate students, educational activities within the Department are also strong.  Multiple graduate students are supported by a renewed NIH Predoctoral Training Grant, and in the past four years almost 70% of the T32 trainees have been able to secure independent predoctoral fellowships. Increased ratings for the Genetics course in the UME curriculum and the creation of a Masters program in Genetic Counseling have also contributed to a vibrant educational atmosphere.

The review provided important recommendations for sustaining and accelerating the Department’s considerable momentum. We look forward to working with Dr. Rader to further enhance the dynamic and interactive scientific environment within the Department of Genetics. Please join us in congratulating him on his reappointment.