Search committee takes shape to replace UI Health Care head Robillard

We 'want to take the time necessary to find the right leader'

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IOWA CITY — The University of Iowa’s general counsel and vice president for legal affairs will co-chair a search to replace Jean Robillard atop the university’s health care operation and Carver College of Medicine.

UI President Bruce Harreld has charged Carroll Reasoner and Bruce Gantz, head of the UI Department of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery, to lead the search to replace Robillard, vice president for medical affairs with UI Health Care and dean of the UI Roy J. and Lucille A. Carver College of Medicine.

Reasoner and Gantz are expected to name additional search members, but they haven’t yet, according to UI spokeswoman Anne Bassett. They also haven’t established a timeline for the search or determined when the committee will start meeting.

“We aren’t setting an arbitrary deadline for naming Dr. Robillard’s replacement, but want to take the time necessary to find the right leader,” Basset wrote in an email.

Robillard has said he plans to stay in his current role until a replacement is hired — meaning the university won’t need to appoint an interim leader of UI Health Care, a $1.9 billion enterprise that comprises the College of Medicine, UI Hospitals and Clinics, and UI Physicians.

“Jean’s decision to continue serving until his replacement is named gives us time to conduct a comprehensive national search,” Harreld said in a statement. “I am pleased to name Bruce and Carroll co-chairs of the search committee. Each has a strong understanding of what the institution needs in a new leader, and they bring considerable expertise from their respective positions.”

Reasoner has been serving the university as a vice president and general counsel since her appointment in October 2010, which followed two years in an interim role. She has represented and advised the university in many of its well-publicized cases and endeavors, including its most-recent presidential search that was led by Robillard and landed Harreld.

She’s been involved in university public records battles — including the UI decision not to release public polling and focus group research the institution commissioned through a company owned and operated by former Iowa Republican Party Chairman Matt Strawn.

Before joining the university, Reasoner was senior vice president at Shuttleworth & Ingersoll, PLC in Cedar Rapids, where she focused on corporate law, health care, and banking law. She earned an undergraduate degree in psychology from UI and a law degree from the UI College of Law.

Gantz, in addition to leading the UI Department of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery, also is a distinguished chair in the department and a professor of otolaryngology and neurosurgery. He also received all his degrees from UI, including master’s and doctorate degrees.

Robillard’s announcement in September followed UI Health Care’s most financially successful year in history and just as it’s about to open a new $360 million UI Stead Family Children’s Hospital in December. At age 73, Robillard said he feels like it’s the right time to leave — although he’s planning to stay on faculty in the UI Stead Family Department of Pediatrics after his replacement arrives.

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