Letters to the UMB Community

Sexual Harassment Task Force and President's Council for Women

To the UMB Community:

In March, I wrote to you about convening a Task Force on Sexual Harassment, charged with examining issues of sexual discrimination and misconduct at UMB; assessing our capacity to respond effectively to reported incidents; recommending ways to remediate deficiencies; and suggesting a framework to monitor our performance going forward.

I'm delighted to share that the task force has completed its work, and published its full report. I thank School of Pharmacy Dean Natalie Eddington, PhD, FAAPS, FCP, (faculty chair) and Deputy Accountability Officer Susan Buskirk, DM, MS, (administrative chair) for leading this group. 

The task force's recommendations follow:

  • Create standards to ensure that UMB's sexual harassment prevention and response activities are consistent through policy, procedure, and application.
  • Provide additional resources to respond to allegations of misconduct and to support training initiatives. 
  • Build trust within the UMB community by improving transparency with regard to reports of sexual misconduct, the investigatory process, and investigation outcomes. 
  • Raise awareness of UMB processes, training, and resources related to sexual harassment.

Each of these recommendations has associated action steps, and I've been working with the University's leadership team to prioritize these steps and ensure that the task force's recommendations are executed faithfully and well.

When I first announced in January my intention to form the Task Force on Sexual Harassment, I announced as well the creation of a President's Council for Women. Unlike the task force, the council would be convened with no end date in mind; it would instead be a long-term group advising the UMB president on matters of gender equity and other issues affecting women across the University. While issues and implications of sexual harassment might certainly be examined, the council is not limited in scope to Title IX concerns.

I'm grateful to Margaret McCarthy, PhD, James and Carolyn Frenkil Dean's Professor and Chair of Pharmacology in the School of Medicine, for agreeing to head the council. Dr. McCarthy has been committed to the success of women at UMB for a long time, and I know she'll be an enormously effective leader and advocate. She's joined on the council by an impressive roster of UMB's people; their names follow my signature. Should you have questions about the council's activities, or issues you'd like the members to consider, please contact Katrina Davis at 410-706-6224.

The work of the President's Council for Women will not substitute for or supplant efforts undertaken in schools and offices across the University -- efforts that have proved critical to moving the needle in terms of how we behave with one another and how we respect the differences among us. 

And so I thank everyone at the University working to improve our campus culture and climate. I thank everyone working to make UMB a place of safety, civility, respect, and equity -- for all


Jay A. Perman, MD


President's Council for Women
Aphrodite Bodycomb, MBA
Associate Director, Administration and Operations
Health Sciences and Human Services Library
Alison G. Brown, MPH
University of Maryland Medical Center, Midtown Campus
Susan C. Buskirk, DM, MS
Deputy Accountability Officer and Assistant Vice President
Office of Accountability and Compliance
Sarasijhaa Desikan, MD
Faculty Senate Representative
Assistant Professor, Surgery
School of Medicine
Vineet K. Dhar, BDS, MDS, PhD, FAAPD, MFDS (RCPSG)
Clinical Professor and Chair, Orthodontics and Pediatric Dentistry
Director, Advanced Specialty Education Program, Pediatric Dentistry
School of Dentistry
Juliet Dickerson, MS
Director, Staffing and Career Services
Human Resource Services
Natalie D. Eddington, PhD, FAAPS, FCP
Dean and Professor
School of Pharmacy
Lori Edwards, DrPH, RN, PHCNS-BC
Assistant Professor, Family & Community Health
School of Nursing
Karen Faraone, DDS, MA
Associate Dean, Student Affairs
School of Dentistry
Rebecca Fenderson
University Student Government Association Representative
Third-Year Student
School of Medicine
Geoff Greif, PhD
Professor and Co-chair, Clinical Concentration
School of Social Work
Patricia A. Hoffmann
Director, Compensation and Benefits
Human Resource Services
Laundette Jones, PhD, MPH
Assistant Professor, Epidemiology and Public Health
School of Medicine
Jane Kirschling, PhD, RN, FAAN
Dean and Professor
School of Nursing
Mikhel A. Kushner, JD, MSW
Executive Director, Diversity and Inclusion
Title IX Coordinator
Office of Accountability and Compliance
Matt Lasecki, SPHR
Chief Human Resources Officer and Associate Vice President
Human Resource Services
Lisa Lebovitz, JD
Assistant Dean, Academic Affairs and Assessment
School of Pharmacy
Amanda Lehning, PhD, MSW
Associate Professor
Associate Dean for Academic Affairs
School of Social Work
Flavius R. Lilly, PhD, MA, MPH
Senior Associate Dean
Graduate School
Associate Vice President
Office of Academic Affairs
Jennifer B. Litchman, MA
Senior Vice President, External Relations
Special Assistant to the President
Office of the President
Nancy Ryan Lowitt, MD, EdM, FACP
Assistant Professor, Medicine
Associate Dean, Faculty Affairs and Professional Development
Director, Culture Transformation Initiative
School of Medicine
Kimberly M. Lumpkins, MD, FACS, FRCS (Eng)
Assistant Professor, Pediatric Surgery and Urology
Associate Program Director, General Surgery Residency
School of Medicine
Margaret M. McCarthy, PhD (Chair)
James and Carolyn Frenkil Dean's Professor and Chair of Pharmacology
School of Medicine
E. John McKee
Assistant Vice President, Planned Giving and Philanthropy
Office of Philanthropy
Michele Ondra
Associate Director, Library Administration & Finance
Carey School of Law
Jenny Owens, ScD, MS
Assistant Dean
Graduate School
Faculty Executive Director
The Grid
Michelle Pearce, PhD
Assistant Professor and Program Director
Graduate School
Jason Ramirez, MD
Assistant Professor, Family and Community Medicine
Residency Program Director
School of Medicine
Lisa Rowen, DNSc, RN, CENP, FAAN
Senior Vice President of Patient Care Services
Chief Nursing Officer
University of Maryland Medical Center
Laura Scarantino, MSF, CPA
Assistant Vice President
Sponsored Projects Accounting and Compliance
Patricia Scott
Assistant Vice President for Enrollment Administration
University Registrar
Office of the Registrar
Victoria D. Stubbs, MSW
Clinical Instructor
School of Social Work
Rodney J. Taylor, MD, MSPH
Professor and Chair, Otorhinolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery
School of Medicine
Ashley R. Valis, MSW
Executive Director
Office of Community Engagement
Alison Watkins, JD, MS
Assistant Vice President, Enterprise Risk and Policy Oversight
UMB Conflict of Interest Officer
Office of Accountability and Compliance
Tonya J. Webb, PhD
Associate Professor, Microbiology and Immunology
School of Medicine
Lakeisha Wilson
Staff Senate Representative
Program Administrator
School of Medicine
Susan D. Wolfsthal, MD
Residency Program Director
School of Medicine

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