Daisy Sahoo, PhD, Appointed Dean of School of Graduate Studies and Inaugural Women in Science Professor
Daisy Sahoo, PhD, Vice Chair for Research in the Medical College of Wisconsin Department of Medicine, was named Dean of the Medical College of Wisconsin School of Graduate Studies and inaugural holder of the Women in Science Endowed Professorship. Her appointment was announced following a comprehensive national search and approval by the MCW Board of Trustees. Upon becoming Dean of the School of Graduate Studies on February 1, Dr. Sahoo stepped down from her role as Vice Chair for Research; her successor will be identified shortly.
“I am very excited to be appointed Dean of MCW’s School of Graduate Studies and Women in Science Endowed Professor,” said Dr. Sahoo. “As Dean, I will work tirelessly to build and support an inclusive and enriching environment that fosters a culture of discovery for our scholars, researchers, and educators. I am confident that this approach will help our investigators advance their fields of study and establish MCW as a destination hub for the health sciences and healthcare-related fields.”
Dr. Sahoo joined the MCW faculty in 2007 as Assistant Professor of Medicine, earning promotions to Associate Professor in 2013 and Professor with tenure in 2018. Nationally recognized for her work studying how the circulation of cholesterol in the body affects cardiovascular disease, Dr. Sahoo is a member of MCW’s Cardiovascular Center and actively involved with the activities and leadership of the American Heart Association.
“Dr. Sahoo is a gifted scientist, educator, and a dynamic leader,” said Joseph E. Kerschner, MD, Provost, Executive Vice President, and the Julia A. Uihlein, MA, Dean of the School of Medicine at MCW., “She is incredibly well-positioned to take on this critical leadership role and advance our work of medical discovery and training the next generation of academic researchers and health professionals.”
In addition to Dr. Sahoo’s appointment as Dean of the School of Graduate Studies, she will also be the first holder of the Women in Science Endowed Professorship, which has its roots in MCW’s Women in Science Lecture Series. Launched in May of 2007 as a forum for scientific presentations to the community, the lecture series provided financial awards to support research grants and elevated the role of women working in medical discovery at MCW. The endowed fund supporting the series was converted to a professorship in 2022 following feedback from donors and faculty. It is awarded to a woman researcher and leader at MCW. Dr. Sahoo received the Women in Science Pioneer Research Award in 2021.
“As the first woman Dean of an MCW School, I will be an advocate for our learners,” Dr. Sahoo said. “I am grateful to the donors and leadership of the Women in Science program for creating this endowment that will allow me to mentor and support women at all levels to help them achieve their personal and professional goals.”
Dr. Sahoo’s bibliography includes more than 90 publications, manuscripts, abstracts, chapters and reviews, and editorials. She has received continuous R01 funding from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) since 2007 and she has directly generated more than $7.1 million in total research funding for her work with cholesterol transport and cardiovascular disease. Dr. Sahoo has served on several study sections of the American Heart Association and the NIH.
Dr. Sahoo received her undergraduate degree from the University of Ottawa (Ontario) in 1995 and her PhD from the University of Alberta in Edmonton in 2000. She served postdoctoral fellowships in cell biology and pediatrics at the University of Alberta (2000-2002) and in pharmacology at Stony Brook University in New York (2002-2005).
Dr. Sahoo has held several leadership positions at MCW, including serving as President of the Faculty Council from 2020-2021 and has been significantly involved in graduate and medical education. Her teaching efforts were recognized as the recipient of MCW’s Outstanding Medical Student Teacher awards (2016, 2019, 2020) and Outstanding Graduate School Educator awards (2019, 2023). She has mentored numerous undergraduate, medical and graduate students, as well as postdoctoral fellows and faculty. Dr. Sahoo’s mentoring efforts were recognized with the Department of Medicine’s Mentorship Award, as well as by MCW’s graduate students with the 2023 Mentor of the Year award. She also received a Mentor of Women Award from the American Heart Association.
Dr. Sahoo succeeds Ravi Misra, PhD, who served as Dean of the School of Graduate Studies since 2010. Under Dr. Misra’s leadership, the School increased student enrollment, added robust master’s and doctoral degree programs, certificate programs and postdoctoral education opportunities, and enhanced visibility of graduate education at MCW. Dr. Misra is taking on the role of Associate Provost, Accreditation and Program Development.