Establishment of the Arthur Knight Asbury, MD, Professorship in Neurology Honoring Frances E. Jensen, MD

July 15, 2021

To:PSOM Faculty and Staff

From:J. Larry Jameson, MD, PhD

I am delighted to announce establishment of the Arthur Knight Asbury, MD, Professorship in Neurology at the Perelman School of Medicine, an endowed chair created through the generosity of Arthur K. Asbury, HOM'74, HON'15 and Carolyn H. Asbury, GR'82, honoring Frances E. Jensen, MD, as the inaugural chair holder.

Dr. Jensen is Chair of the Department of Neurology and Co-Director of the Penn Translational Neuroscience Center.  She is an internationally recognized investigator on the mechanisms of epilepsy and stroke and is one of Penn Medicine’s most impactful institutional leaders. Dr. Jensen’s research, which has been continuously funded by the NIH since 1987, focuses on the mechanistic interaction of epilepsy with other disorders such as autism and dementia, with particular emphasis on identifying new therapies for clinical trials development. Dr. Jensen is a recipient of the NIH Director’s Pioneer Award in 2007 and the Jacob Javits Neuroscience Investigator Award in 2020.

Dr. Jensen is also widely known as an expert on adolescent brain development and its impact on medical, social, and educational issues unique to teenagers and young adults. Her best-selling book “The Teenage Brain” has been translated into more than 25 languages worldwide. In addition to her impactful research, educational outreach, and departmental leadership, Dr. Jensen co-chairs CPUP Committee on Anti-Racism and is a member of the Neuroscience Service Line Steering Committee. She is also a member of the Steering Committees of the Lifespan Institute for Behavioral Research at CHOP, the Penn Medicine Neuroscience Center, and the Orphan Disease Center. At the national level, Dr. Jensen is President-Elect of the American Neurological Association, past president of the American Epilepsy Society, and serves on the Multi-Council Working Group for the NIH BRAIN Initiative. Prior to joining the Penn faculty in 2012, Dr. Jensen was Professor of Neurology at Harvard Medical School, Director of Translational Neuroscience and senior neurologist at Boston Children’s Hospital and Brigham and Women’s Hospital. In keeping with her extensive impact, she was elected to the National Academy of Medicine in 2015.

Gifts for the endowment of professorships are critically important in academic medicine, and Dr. Asbury holds a special place in the history of PSOM. A distinguished, clinician, researcher and educator, Dr. Asbury is the Van Meter Professor of Neurology Emeritus. He chaired the Department of Neurology from 1973 -1982 and twice served as acting Dean of the medical school. Fittingly, the Arthur Knight Asbury Professorship he and his wife, Carolyn, have created endows now, and for generations to come, the academic appointment held by the Chair of the Neurology Department at PSOM, the position he once filled with exceptional distinction.  Please join me in expressing sincere gratitude to Arthur and Carolyn Asbury for their visionary philanthropy and in congratulating Dr. Jensen on being named the inaugural Arthur Knight Asbury Professor of Neurology.