Goodrum accepted into executive leadership fellowship

Nov. 20, 2023

Felicia Goodrum, PhD, interim associate department head and professor of immunobiology in the University of Arizona College of Medicine – Tucson has been accepted into the Hedwig van Ameringen Executive Leadership in Academic Medicine program hosted by Drexel University. She is also a professor in the BIO5 Institute, a member of the UArizona Cancer Center and a member of the AEGIS Consortium.

The intensive, one-year fellowship offers leadership training with coaching and networking aimed at expanding the national pool of qualified women candidates for leadership positions in academic medicine and other health sciences fields.

Portrait of Felicia Goodrum, a white woman with short blonde hair standing with arms crossed and smiling.

Felicia Goodrum, PhD

“It is an honor to be nominated for ELAM by the College of Medicine – Tucson and to be awarded the fellowship,” Goodrum said. “It is great recognition of my career to this point and of the potential that leaders of the college and ELAM see in me beyond my current roles. I am confident ELAM will propel my leadership acumen so that I can better empower young faculty and trainees, especially women and underrepresented people in science.”

Goodrum, who joined the UArizona faculty in 2006, was recommended to the fellowship by Michael M.I. Abecassis, MD, MBA, dean of the College of Medicine – Tucson, who wrote in his letter of recommendation: “Dr. Goodrum is nationally and internationally known and recognized as a leading scientist in the field of herpes virus research. I have had a front row seat to her academic and career progression as she has made significant advances both scientifically as well as academically. Goodrum has played, and continues to play, several important roles in national and international groups in the field of virology and recently became editor-in-chief for the most important journal in the field, the Journal of Virology.”

Goodrum’s lab studies the human cytomegalovirus, a betaherpesvirus that latently infects up to 99% of the population worldwide. Understanding how interactions between viruses and their hosts allow for the entry into and exit from latent states may lead to the creation of novel antiviral therapies for at-risk individuals, such as stem cell and organ transplant recipients.

“I have been empowered by the College of Medicine – Tucson and BIO5 to lead our science through the culture for excellence and collaborative science fostered by UArizona Health Sciences,” Goodrum said. “Through the years I have always been provided the ultimate combination of support and independence to drive my career and science. I am grateful for the support of Dean Abecassis and my department head, Janko Nikolich, MD, PhD, for their incredible support over many years that has made this possible. The collegial culture has allowed me to thrive.”

The ELAM program was started in 1995 and has over 1,200 graduates serving in leadership roles throughout the U.S. and Canada, according to Drexel University’s website. Goodrum attended the first in-person week of the fellowship in late September. “It is amazing to have the opportunity to interface with so many strong women leaders in science and medicine across the country,” she said. “The people are amazing, and I know I have already forged a number of lifelong relationships. Without a doubt, I know ELAM will be transformative for me — professionally and personally.”