Veteran health administrator Dr. Said A. Ibrahim named 1st Black dean at Jefferson medical school

His appointment, effective Dec. 1, was announced to the school community on Tuesday.

Dr. Said A. Ibrahim posing for a photo

Dr. Said A. Ibrahim, named dean at Thomas Jefferson University's Sidney Kimmel Medical College, has done stints at the University of Penn and the Philadelphia VA Medical Center. (The Philadelphia Tribune/Submitted)

This story originally appeared on The Philadelphia Tribune.

A veteran health administrator, Dr. Said A. Ibrahim, was appointed as the first Black dean at Thomas Jefferson University’s Sidney Kimmel Medical College, after a rigorous search process.

His appointment, effective Dec. 1, was announced to the school community on Tuesday.

Currently, Ibrahim, 61, is senior vice president of Northwell Health’s Medical Service Line. He has also been chair of the Department of Medicine at Long Island Jewish Medical Center, North Shore University Hospital in Manhasset and the Donald and Barbara Zucker School of Medicine at Hofstra/Northwell.

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Susan Aldridge, interim president of Thomas Jefferson University, described Ibrahim as an “inspirational and transformational leader” who will guide a “new generation of students and faculty” and the medical school into the future.

“Dr. Ibrahim is an extraordinary researcher, physician, scientist and educator,” Aldridge said. “Not only will he continue to be involved in health disparity research, but he will help us in bringing in additional faculty and students from diverse areas of the country and diverse backgrounds, so we are very excited to have his talent and leadership here.”

In an April article on Northwell Health’s website, Ibrahim said Northwell has a very diverse population and therefore has to have a diverse strategy that includes recruiting physicians, nurses and staff who reflect the communities it serves.

Asked about health equity in the article, Ibrahim said: “Delivering the best care to all of our community members regardless of their social station in life is the most important health care challenge of our time. I know this in part because health equity has been a focus of my research and scholarship, which has been continuously supported for over 25 years by the National Institutes of Health and other funders.”

No stranger to Philadelphia, Ibrahim worked at the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania and served as the chief of medicine at the Philadelphia Veterans Administration Medical Center. As co-director of the VA National Center of Innovation for Health Equity Research and Promotion (CHERP) in Philadelphia, Ibrahim utilized a $20 million research portfolio to support 40 doctors and doctorate investigators engaged in health services research.

Before serving in his current position at Northwell Health, Ibrahim was professor of health care policy and research and the founding chief of the Division of Healthcare Delivery Science and Innovation at the Department of Healthcare Policy and Research for Weill Cornell Medicine. In addition, he was the first associate dean for diversity and inclusion at Weill Cornell.

Ibrahim, who once played basketball on the Somalia National Team, earned his bachelor’s degree from Oberlin College and his medical degree from the Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine. Ibrahim holds a master’s degree in business administration from Harvard University’s School of Public Health.

Ibrahim completed his internship and residency training at Brigham and Women’s Hospital of Harvard Medical School.

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“Dr. Ibrahim is a renowned researcher and his research has been in the area of health policy and diversity, so he has looked at health equity and disparity issues for many years,” Aldridge said.

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