New Pro Vice-Chancellor for Cardiff University’s College of Biomedical and Life Sciences

Professor Gary F Baxter will take over responsibility for Cardiff University’s College of Biomedical and Life Sciences from Professor Dylan Jones who is standing down to focus on his research (Cardiff University, 2017). For the past seven years Gary Baxter has been Head of the Cardiff University’s School of Pharmacy.

Cardiff University’s Vice-Chancellor, Professor Colin Riordan, said “Professor Baxter is a distinguished academic with an outstanding track record of leading the School of Pharmacy…I have no doubt that he will successfully build on the solid foundation laid by Professor Dylan Jones, further developing the College’s already excellent record in teaching and research.”

Dylan Jones said “I am delighted that Professor Gary Baxter is to take over from me as Pro Vice-Chancellor. He will bring to bear the immense experience of running a very successful school over many years. He brings with him a deep understanding of the very wide range of research in the biomedical domain and important insights into training students at all levels but especially for their clinical role and professional responsibilities…I know that Professor Baxter is a very energetic and enthusiastic devotee of the College, his collaborative and collegiate approach will further consolidate and energise the College team. His fresh outlook and new ideas will drive the College forward to new exciting areas of academic achievement and innovation.”

Gary Baxter said “I am delighted to have been appointed to lead the College of Biomedical and Life Sciences as its next Pro Vice-Chancellor. Our College is one the largest and most comprehensive faculties of biology, healthcare and medical science in the UK. Under the leadership of Professor Dylan Jones, the firm foundations of the College have been laid and we have achieved some outstanding successes. I want us to build on these achievements to secure global recognition for Cardiff as a leading centre of education and research in biological science, biomedicine, clinical practice and health outcomes.

“I am excited as I look forward to working with students, colleagues in the College, academic schools and the University Executive Board. I particularly look forward to engaging with NHS Wales and our many other partners and stakeholders outside the University…We have the opportunity to realise an ambitious academic vision for the College and for it to be a catalyst for the growth of the life sciences sector in Wales and the delivery of transformative healthcare for the people of Wales. It is a privilege to be leading these ambitions on behalf of the University.”

As part of the role of Pro Vice-Chancellor, Gary Baxter will take responsibility for the overall management and leadership of the College of Biomedical and Life Sciences. He will also play a key role in setting the College’s strategy and direction and in promoting the development of learning, teaching and research excellence.

Gary Baxter originally qualified in pharmacy at the University of Nottingham and The Royal London Hospital. After a period spent in clinical practice in hospitals in East Anglia, he undertook research training in experimental pharmacology. His PhD was awarded in 1992 for research on cardiac rhythm disturbances in hypertension.

Gary Baxter recipient of the British Pharmacological Society’s Bowman Prize and the Naranjan Dhalla Prize of the International Academy of Cardiovascular Sciences. He has served as European Secretary of the International Society for Heart Research and on the council of the European Society of Cardiology’s Working Group on the Cellular Biology of the Heart.

After a period spent at the Cape Heart Centre in South Africa, Gary Baxter was appointed Senior Lecturer in the Department of Medicine at UCL in 2000 and then Reader in Cardiovascular Biology at the Royal Veterinary College, University of London. Before joining Cardiff University, he was a British Heart Foundation research fellow at the Hatter Cardiovascular Institute and the Department of Physiology, UCL.

Gary Baxter’s research is focused on ischaemic heart disease and its treatment, with special emphasis on the molecular determinants of heart muscle injury during acute myocardial infarction. He has published extensively on the roles of chemical signalling mechanisms relevant to the development of treatments to protect heart muscle. In 2009, the higher doctorate (DSc) was conferred by the University of Nottingham for a body of published works on this topic and he was elected to Fellowships of the British Pharmacological Society, the Royal Pharmaceutical Society, the American Heart Association and the European Society of Cardiology.

Gary Baxter is an experienced university teacher. He is committed to the broad aims of liberal education and has taught a wide range of topics, including aspects of physiology, pharmacology and philosophy of science, to natural sciences, medicine, veterinary science and pharmacy students.

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