John Flanagan to become Berkeley Optometry’s 8th dean

John Flanagan

John Flanagan

John Flanagan, a professor of optometry, ophthalmology and vision science with three decades of research and clinical experience, will take over as dean of UC Berkeley’s School of Optometry in June 2014, campus officials have announced. He succeeds Dennis Levi, who has led the school since 2001.

“We are proud to welcome John Flanagan as our eighth dean of the School of Optometry,” Executive Vice Chancellor and Provost George Breslauer said in a campuswide message. Flanagan, he said, “combines the intellectual stature, administrative acumen and interpersonal skills required to serve with distinction as dean.”

Flanagan graduated in optometry and vision sciences from England’s Aston University in 1980, and earned his Ph.D. there in 1985. He now serves on the faculties of the School of Optometry and Vision Science, University of Waterloo, and the Department of Ophthalmology and Vision Sciences, University of Toronto. A therapeutically qualified clinician, he has a special interest in glaucoma management, and serves as director of the Glaucoma Research Unit, Toronto Western Research Institute, and as a senior scientist at the Toronto Western Hospital, University Health Network, among other leadership roles. His research has garnered numerous awards in both Canada and the United States.

In addition to some 145 peer-reviewed publications, Flanagan’s credits include three books, 10 book chapters, a CD-rom and invited lectures to both professional and academic audiences around the world. He has supervised 42 graduate students.

In a separate message, Breslauer noted Berkeley Optometry’s “worldwide reputation for excellence,” and thanked Levi – the campus’s longest-serving dean – for “his extraordinary service to our university.” The provost took special note of a “culture of collegiality and collaboration” that has thrived under Levi’s leadership, as well as substantial improvements in student services, “with greater professional support, financial aid and engagement within the community.”

Flanagan’s five-year term as dean is set to begin June 1, 2014.