Lee Huntsman

President Emeritus, University of Washington

After distinguished service in academic leadership spanning more than two decades, Lee Huntsman was named President Emeritus by the University of Washington Board of Regents in July 2004. In that role, he has provided leadership in a variety of scientific and policy initiatives underway at the University and in the State of Washington. From 2005 to 2012, he also served as the first executive director of the Life Sciences Discovery Fund Authority, a public-private partnership intended to advance life sciences research in the state. Currently he divides his efforts between new initiatives at the UW and involvement with a variety or for-profit and non-profit organizations.

Dr. Huntsman received his Ph.D. in biomedical engineering from the University of Pennsylvania in 1968 after receiving his Bachelors of Electrical Engineering from Stanford University. Recruited to help launch the Bioengineering program at UW, he developed a research program focused on cardiac function, both basic questions of how cardiac muscle is controlled by mechanical and chemical conditions and applied questions of how best to assess cardiac performance non-invasively. He became chairman of Bioengineering in 1980 and simultaneously Associate Dean for Scientific Affairs of the UW School of Medicine in 1993. Dr. Huntsman was appointed Provost of the University in 1996 and President in 2002.

A particular focus during Dr. Huntsman’s tenure at the UW has been the identification and initiation of new interdisciplinary programs, including major new efforts in genomics, ocean research, evidence-based approaches to foster care, cosmology, early learning, biomedical informatics, global health, and technology transfer. In recent years he has been exploring ways the UW and Washington state might become more agile and successful in the reinvention of health care. This effort has included both a new course on health care innovation and active participation in community forums. Dr. Huntsman has been elected Fellow of the American Institute of Medical and Biological Engineering, the Biomedical Engineering Society, and the American Association for the Advancement of Science.