By Reubin Turner
Dr. Edwin Trevathan, Professor of Epidemiology in the College for Public Health and Social Justice at Saint Louis University has been appointed executive vice-president and provost by Baylor President and Chancellor Ken Starr. His appointment will become effective on June 1.
This comes after the resignation of Dr. Elizabeth Davis in March of last year, who accepted a position at Furman University as president.
Following Davis’ resignation, Starr appointed a provost search committee who led a global effort to recommend a new provost for the university.
“Dr. Trevathan brings outstanding credentials and genuine enthusiasm for Baylor’s unique mission and the community vision of Pro Futuris,” Starr said in a press release.
As the chief academic officer, Trevathan would be responsible for leading university efforts for academic advancement.
Like Davis, Trevathan grew up on a university campus and said his decision to enter academia was a direct result of his childhood.
After obtaining a bachelor’s degree in chemistry in 1977 from Lipscomb University, Trevathan went on to obtain a dual degree in medicine and a master’s in public health from Emory University, possibly the first in the country to do so.
He completed residencies and post-doctoral fellowships at Yale-New Haven Medical Center, Yale University School of Medicine, Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston Children’s Hospital and Harvard Medical School.
Trevathan said he has always combined his career with community work, citing his childhood once again, as the chief reason for this characteristic.
Trevathan said one thing he’s most excited about is interacting with the Waco community as the provost.
“One thing that attracted me most to Baylor was the extremely unique relationship that the community and Baylor seem to have,” Trevathan said. After meeting with city officials last week, Trevathan said the two entities seem to understand each other’s missions.
His love for the community also played a role in his decision to go into teaching, Trevathan said.
“He has a passion for students,” said Lori Fogleman, assistant vice president for media communications.
And although Trevathan has worked for the Centers for Disease Control and taught at a medical school, he said the career transitions he has made throughout his career haven’t been as drastic as they might appear.
“It seems that I’ve always found my way into teaching,” Trevathan said. He said he’s never gone longer than nine months without teaching, and some of the times he taught he did not get paid for it.
When asked if he would teach in the Robbins College of Health and Human Sciences, Trevathan said he had no immediate plans to do so, and that he first needed to learn in depth about the position of the provost.