Dean of UF's vet school takes senior post at UT


Published: Saturday, January 7, 2006 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Saturday, January 7, 2006 at 12:16 a.m.
Joseph DiPietro, who is credited with helping transform the fund-raising efforts at the University of Florida's College of Veterinary Medicine, is stepping down as dean to take another post at the University of Tennessee.
DiPietro will leave Gainesville in late February to take over as UT's vice president for agriculture.
"When it comes right down to it, I'm going to miss a whole lot of people," DiPietro said Friday.
Janie Fouke, UF provost, said an interim dean will be named in the next four to six weeks, and then a formal search process will begin for a permanent replacement. DiPietro's departure leaves a fourth dean slot open at UF. Active searches are already under way for deans in the colleges of Design, Construction and Planning, Fine Arts and Health and Human Performance.
DiPietro, 54, became dean at UF in 1997, making him the fourth permanent dean of the college since its founding in 1976. In his nine years at UF, research and grant contracts in the college have more than doubled to an average of $10 million to $12 million a year.
"The dean sets the tone and the encouragement for (research)," said John Harvey, head of the department of physiological sciences. "He clearly has stressed that need along with everything else."
DiPietro also devoted himself to helping others enter veterinary fields, Harvey said. He tied a scholarship fund-raiser to the Gainesville Cycling Club's Horse Farm 100 race, which has raised more than $100,000 in eight years.
Another of DiPietro's passions was helping the college move toward its goal of building a new small-animal hospital. The college reached a $4 million fund-raising goal this year for a project that will likely cost more than $42 million. DiPietro said he hopes the project will receive state funding in the coming years.
"One of my regrets is that we haven't thrown a shovel in the ground for a ground-breaking on that building," he said. "But I hope it will happen really soon." DiPietro said he was excited about the opportunities presented in Knoxville, but was torn about leaving UF.
"It's a precious place," he said. "I'll never forget it. I've learned a ton here."
Jack Stripling can be reached at 374-5064 or Jack.Stripling@gvillesun.com

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