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Medical School’s First Named Professorship Conferred on Nowakowski in Rill’s Honor

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Richard Nowakowski Ph.D.

Richard Nowakowski Ph.D.

March 1, 2010

Richard Nowakowski is not only the new chair of Biomedical Sciences but also the first Randolph L. Rill Professor of Biomedical Sciences in the College of Medicine.

This is the medical school’s first named professorship. Different from “Distinguished Research Professor” and other titles, a named professorship at Florida State University generally honors a past member of a department’s faculty. It requires the provost’s approval.

Rill, a founding member of the College of Medicine’s faculty, died last year. He established the biochemistry content of the medical curriculum, played a key role in establishing the Biomedical Sciences Ph.D. program, served as its director, and wrote the successful proposal for the M.S. in Biomedical Sciences Bridge to Clinical Sciences degree for our Bridge program. The first Bridge students to earn M.S. degrees will graduate this spring.

Rill’s widow, Louise Rill, wrote in a letter to Dean John P. Fogarty that the family greatly appreciated this acknowledgment of her husband’s work.

“Randy was inspired by his students and grateful for his fine colleagues in a profession that he loved,” she wrote. “A named professorship in the Department of Biomedical Sciences is a wonderful tribute that he would find a deep honor.”

Nowakowski this week officially began his role as Biomedical Sciences chair. The eminent neuroscientist earned tenure moving up through the academic ranks at the Robert Wood Johnson Medical School of New Jersey. He has had a very successful career in research and teaching, earning the recognition of his peers in awards, grants and contracts, publications, study section memberships and more. He has held a named chair at the RWJ Medical School.

“He has earned the stature required of a named professor at Florida State University,” Dean Fogarty said.