Academy Chair Policy

Matched Endowed Chairs
Guided by the vision of the former dean of the UCSF School of Medicine, Haile T. Debas, the Academy has facilitated the establishment of a portfolio of matched endowed chairs in the School of Medicine in support of teaching excellence. These chairs have a five-year term limit and provide a limited discretionary income stream intended to support value-added educational work. Beginning in 2001, when the endowed chair program was established, each matched chair was funded by $250,000 from the Dean’s Office and at least $250,000 in academic departmental funding. A minimally endowed chair with a corpus of $500,000 produces approximately $25,000 income annually (less the management fees).

As of 2017, there are 20 established matched endowed chairs, representing at least 17 different departments. More than $10 million has been committed to this program, with the income working to enhance medical student education across the school. All chair holders are members of the Academy and play vital roles in serving as liaisons between the Academy and their academic departments

Academy Chairs
In 2008, additional funding was committed to establishing a portfolio of endowed chairs based solely within the Academy. The first chair of this kind was established in 2010. Like the matched endowed chair program, the intent is to allow talented teachers to expand their impact as educators at UCSF and beyond by providing a source of discretionary funding for the educator’s use. Unlike the matched endowed chair program, the funding does not include matched academic department funding.

Academy chairs also have a five-year term limit; within the established overall purpose, the Academy may designate a specific focus of work for each term. As of 2017, there are 4 established academy-based endowed chairs, 3 focused on advancing teaching and learning and one on administrative leadership for the Academy, all with appointed chair holders.


The chair holder must: 

  • Be an AME member in good standing
  • Uphold the Academy’s Principles of Professionalism in Health Professions Education 
  • Model the faculty role of expert educator at an impeccable level 
  • Have completed the DEI Champion training, its successor, and/or enrolled in the Teach for UCSF Teaching for Equity and Inclusion Certificate with completion of at least two workshops at the time of application 
  • Have a UCSF faculty appointment
    • For matched endowed chairs, they must have an appointment in that department.
    • Eligibility for faculty with joint appointments is determined in consultation between the department chair and the Academy director
    • Those with an emeritus faculty appointment or are an AME Sustaining Member are ineligible.  
    • If a faculty member who holds an endowed chair retires or otherwise relinquishes their UCSF appointment, they must vacate the chair and the chair will be searched during the next cycle.  
  • Chair holders for whom a second term is available must re-compete with other eligible AME members from the department and have a successful stewardship review of the first term to be eligible. 

Faculty “without salary”
Faculty members appointed “without-salary” (WOS) may be eligible, if:

  1. allowed by UCSF policy
  2. feasibility of fund management is determined in advance
  3. there is agreement from key stakeholders (AME, SOM and, if a matched endowed chair, the department chair) 

Exclusion criteria:

  • Academy endowed chair holders may not concurrently hold more than one chair.
  • Faculty members holding academic leadership positions such as department chair, or administrative positions such as associate dean or health systems leader, are ineligible.  For certain roles, such as division chief or vice chair of education, eligibility is determined by the Academy director and department chair (for matched endowed chairs) or the SOM vice dean of education (for Academy-based chairs) with consideration for fair and equitable use of resources. 


Chair Holder Review

Each chair holder has a mid-term review in the third year of the five-year term and receives a summary statement of evaluation at its conclusion; this document will provide the chair holder with a sense of how well they are fulfilling the expectations of their department, the Academy, and the School of Medicine, and what goals might be achieved by the term's completion.  

This review consists of the chair holder meeting with the Academy Director to discuss accomplishments, barriers and prepares the Academy Director to best advocate for full completion of proposed work. Subsequent to this meeting, the Academy Director meets with the Department Chair, where applicable, and Vice Dean of Education.  

A fifth-year stewardship review is also required at the end of the chair holder’s term.

Renewal of Chair Holder Appointment

Renewal of appointment for a second five-year term requires a satisfactory fifth-year stewardship review and the concurrence of the director of the Academy, the vice dean for education, the vice dean for academic affairs, and the department chair, in addition to any approvals that may be required by the School of Medicine, Academic Senate, or campus Academic Affairs. Conditions for renewal of appointment include meeting the general expectations for Academy membership and departmental liaison for the Academy. The expectations of Academy members include participation in Academy administration and programs, continued excellence in teaching and educational activities, and attendance at Academy functions. Departmental liaisons are expected to meet periodically with their department chairs and with other Academy members in their departments to facilitate Academy support for all educators. 

The appointment decision is generally made by March of the fifth year. This process is initiated by request of the Academy director and the department chair to the dean to appoint a stewardship review and search committee. This request is made in the Fall of the fifth year of the chair holder’s term and accompanied by a suggested list of the committee chair and members. The Academy director, the department chair, and the vice dean for education, or their designees, also serve on this committee. In late Winter the committee chair conveys recommendations to the dean regarding stewardship for the chairholder’s concluding term and for the new chair holder. Communications around this transition process require careful attention so that all stakeholders are timely informed, including unsuccessful candidates and the outgoing chair holder. The chancellor’s formal appointment letter to the successful candidate concludes the cycle.


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