March 1, 2017

Eric Barker named Purdue College of Pharmacy dean

Eric L. Barker Eric L. Barker
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WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. - Eric L. Barker will become dean of Purdue University’s College of Pharmacy, effective July 1, 2017. Barker is a professor of medicinal chemistry and molecular pharmacology and has served as associate dean for research in Purdue’s College of Pharmacy since 2010.

Barker joined Purdue in 1998 after earning his Ph.D. in pharmacology from Vanderbilt University and completing postdoctoral research at Vanderbilt and Emory universities.

Deba Dutta, provost and executive vice president for academic affairs and diversity, said, “With strong support from both inside and outside of the College of Pharmacy, Eric was selected as dean from a pool of four highly qualified finalists. He is a well-respected leader who will help the college enhance its reputation for excellence and promote the faculty’s scholarship, teaching and mentoring expertise.”

Barker is a noted neuropharmacologist, award-winning teacher, skilled academic leader and pharmacist. He is a member of several professional associations that include the American Pharmacists Association, Society for Neuroscience, and American Society for Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics, where he has served in leadership positions for the Neuropharmacology Division. In January 2016, he became editor-in-chief for Pharmacological Reviews, a quarterly peer-reviewed scientific journal. 

“I am deeply honored to be named dean of the College of Pharmacy," Barker said. "The extraordinary faculty within this college are making a tremendous impact every day as they work with our hardworking students and collaborate on innovative and relevant research to improve our world. I am committed deeply to our faculty, staff, students, and alumni as we seek to achieve a vision of being bold leaders, moving together to the highest level of excellence in discovery, learning, and providing patient care.”

As chief executive officer of the College of Pharmacy, the dean provides academic, intellectual and administrative leadership. Barker will be responsible for overseeing the college’s teaching research and engagement missions; for representing the college to internal and external constituents; and for ensuring that the college is fiscally well-managed. The dean also will engage and work collaboratively with key College of Pharmacy stakeholders to create and execute a strategy for enhancing the stature of the college as one of the nation's leading colleges of pharmacy.

Barker’s research interests are in the area of molecular actions of drugs of abuse and other drugs that affect the brain. He has received grant support from the National Institute on Drug Abuse, National Institute of Mental Health, National Alliance for Research on Schizophrenia and Depression, Lilly Research Laboratories, and DARPA. In addition to his scholarly pursuits, Barker has been recognized for his efforts in teaching medicinal chemistry and pharmacology, having received the College of Pharmacy Dr. Aziz Outstanding Teaching Award as well as the Purdue University Charles B. Murphy Outstanding Undergraduate Teaching Award and selection to the Purdue Teaching Academy and the Purdue Book of Great Teachers. 

Source: Deba Dutta,

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