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UCI Picks Vice Chancellor : Education: Sidney H. Golub will be the second in command. He is a cancer researcher from the UCLA School of Medicine, where he was interim dean.

June 23, 1994|ALICIA DI RADO | TIMES STAFF WRITER

IRVINE — A UCLA cancer researcher and immunologist has been selected to be UC Irvine's new executive vice chancellor, the university's second highest position, UCI officials announced Wednesday.

Sidney H. Golub, the interim dean and provost of medical sciences at the UCLA School of Medicine, will take over the post Sept. 19, UCI spokesman Scott Nelson said.

UCI Chancellor Laurel L. Wilkening picked Golub from three other candidates for the position. A panel of 14 UCI faculty members, students, staff members and administrators narrowed the field down to four in April.

"He was the best man for the job," Wilkening said in an interview Wednesday. "I was particularly interested in his UC experience . . . and his biomedical background, since that is an area of emphasis for UCI, as we're going to be trying to move up the ranks of research universities."

Golub will receive an annual salary of $155,000, Nelson said.

Acting executive vice chancellor Spencer Olin, who filled the post after L. Dennis Smith left UCI for the University of Nebraska in December, will return to his former position as dean of humanities, officials have said.

Among his duties, Golub will fill in for Wilkening in her absence, act as chief academic and budget officer on campus, coordinate the activities of the vice chancellors, and act as liaison between Wilkening and UC President Jack W. Peltason.

Golub said he is excited about the chance to work as a campuswide administrator. He became the interim dean and provost of medical sciences at UCLA in mid-1992, and under his direction the UCLA School of Medicine received $178 million in research funding during the following year, Nelson said.

"I've been part of the UC system for 23 years," said Golub, who began as an assistant professor at UCLA in 1971. "But Irvine's a different campus. It's a growth campus, a new institution with lots of space, and a there's a chance to participate with staff and faculty to develop a vision for its future."

Golub will have to deal with shrinking budgets and departmental cutbacks at UCI when he assumes his office. Earlier this year, two controversial task-force reports recommended closing several academic departments to help cut about $10 million from the budget and redirect UCI's goals.

Does Golub find prospects of dealing with budget problems daunting?

"Sure, I'm a bit anxious," he said. "I think that's healthy, though."

In the past three years, Golub said, $9 million was cut from UCLA's School of Medicine budget and another $6 million from UCLA's hospital budget.

"I think it's possible to manage" cost-cutting, he said. "I don't want any more of it, of course, but all of higher education is having to learn how to be more cost effective."

A UCI academic planning group recently recommended that the university invest resources in its strongest academic programs to carry UCI into the forefront of research institutions. Golub fits into that plan, Wilkening said.

"Our own College of Medicine and biomedical programs are strong and represent the best opportunity for growth," Wilkening said. Golub is experienced in promoting more research and attracting grants, she said.

However, Golub vowed that humanities departments will not be ignored under his authority.

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"Great research universities aren't built on a narrow base," he said. "We need a solid foundation in a whole variety of areas."

He added that he hopes to find time to teach, something he was not able to do often at UCLA. "It's important to connect to students and faculty," he said.

The search committee for executive vice chancellor was led by F. Sherwood Rowland, a renowned researcher of ozone depletion at UCI. Rowland said he was impressed with Golub's background.

"He's an outstanding person to fit into the Irvine campus," Rowland said. "He's familiar with the University of California system and he's relatively low-key but a good listener. . . . He's well-rounded, with a sense of humor."

UCLA Executive Vice Chancellor Andrea Rich called Golub's departure "a loss to UCLA, but a gain to the UC family."

Not all the campus community at UCI was satisfied with Golub's selection. Some said they were disappointed that Wilkening did not pick University of Washington Law School Dean Wallace Loh, University of Houston Law Center Associate Dean Michael A. Olivas or Myra Strober, Stanford University's School of Education associate dean for academic affairs.

"I'm disappointed," said Maria Herrera Sobek, professor of Spanish and Portuguese. "I wanted Olivas to get picked--he's Chicano, and in California we have a highly Mexican-American, Chicano and Hispanic population. Yet UCI is losing many of its Chicano and Latino instructors."

Luis Villarreal, professor of molecular biology and biochemistry and a member of the executive vice chancellor search committee, said he was impressed with Golub's ability to deal with conflict.

"He was almost judge-like in his ability to express things," Villarreal said.

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