University of Nevada, Reno President Brian Sandoval announced last month that Melissa Piasecki, M.D., a longtime member of UNR Med senior leadership team and professor of psychiatry, was appointed to the role of acting dean at UNR Med, following the Aug. 31 retirement of former dean Thomas L. Schwenk, M.D.
With the appointment, she will also serve as Chief Academic Officer for Renown Health under the recently-formalized affiliation agreement between UNR Med and Renown, according to a Sept. 16 press release. “I want to thank Dr. Piasecki for her enduring leadership and strategic contributions to UNR Med and to her passion and commitment to the faculty, staff and learners,” Sandoval said in a statement. “She has been integral to developing UNR Med’s partnership with Renown and, under her leadership, will continue to build out the affiliation to advance health and health care through world-class medical education, clinical research and patient care for our community and our state.” Piasecki has served UNR Med for 26 years in various teaching and leadership roles, most recently as executive associate dean. She received her medical degree at Washington University in St. Louis and completed residency in psychiatry at University of Vermont and a fellowship in forensic psychiatry at University of Hawaii. “I have a deep appreciation for what makes our medical school community special – our commitment to our learners, our missions and our community. Never before have these qualities mattered so much as we continue to adapt to our changing environment and capture the opportunities before us,” Piasecki said in a statement. “Along with our outstanding senior leadership team at UNR Med, I will continue to build our community ties and the Renown integration. I look forward to our school’s next cycle of strategic planning and to developing and recruiting new leaders to UNR Med.”
According to the release, UNR has hired an executive search firm to launch a national search for the next dean. With that, Jennifer Hagen, M.D. was appointed to the role of acting executive associate dean until the completion of the dean search. “I want to thank Dr. Hagen for accepting this position at this time and continuing to enthusiastically support the growth and success of our school of medicine, our faculty and learners,” Piasecki said in a statement. “She has been a key contributor to UNR Med’s success and will continue to help guide our future through her commitment to the school’s academic, research and clinical achievements. Hagen has served UNR Med for 22 years in a variety of leadership roles. Since 2018, Hagen has overseen UNR Med’s Office for Faculty. She is an alumna of the UNR School of Medicine and received her graduate training in internal medicine and geriatrics at UNR Med and is board certified in both specialties.