The University of Wisconsin has chosen Steven Swanson as the new Dean of the School of Pharmacy, officials announced Friday.

Swanson has been a professor of pharmocognosy at the University of Illinois at Chicago since 1998. He said he is excited for the opportunity to preside as dean of pharmacy, especially due to UW’s unique structure and strong reputation.

“[The school] has a first-rate reputation,” Swanson said. “What really excites me is the convergence of a bunch of things.”

UW’s School of Pharmacy is integrated with the School of Nursing and School of Medicine to allow for collaboration between health fields. Swanson said this system, as well as the historical strength of Wisconsin’s biochemistry program, are more reasons he is “thrilled” to join the university.

Swanson said the sense of fulfillment he gets from working in the medical field helps him to remember that he and his students can make a great impact.

“Being able to help people in a very important and significant way allows me to appreciate the work being done,” he said. “It is important to look back and say that you helped someone in a big way with their medical needs. It’s wonderful.”

Swanson will start his post July 1, replacing former Dean Jeanette Roberts, who has served since 2003. Roberts will remain a member of the faculty in the Pharmacy School’s Pharmaceutical Science Division.

Provost Paul Deluca said in the statement he is excited to welcome Swanson to the position.

“We are thrilled Professor Swanson has accepted our offer and will now become a Badger,” Deluca said. “His extraordinary leadership, scholarship and energy will play important roles in maintaining and growing the international reputation earned by our School of Pharmacy.”

[Photo by Stephanie Judge, University Communications]