University of Michigan Professor William Giannobile Named Harvard Dental School Dean


William V. Giannobile, a renowned scholar in oral regenerative medicine, will serve as the School of Dental Medicine’s next dean following a national search, according to a University press release.

Giannobile, a School of Dental Medicine alum, will take over from interim dean Vicki Rosen on Sept. 1. Rosen stepped in for R. Bruce Donoff, who stepped down at the end of 2019 after 28 years at the helm.

“I am thrilled to welcome Will back to the Harvard School of Dental Medicine and the Longwood Medical Area,” Daley said in the announcement. “Having roots in our community and experience as a passionate and productive leader of a major department at a premier dental school make him perfectly suited to take the helm at HSDM during this unprecedented time.”

“Our medical and dental schools are inextricably linked, and I look forward to Will’s partnership toward our shared mission of improving health for all through education, research and service,” Daley added.


The current chair of the Department of Periodontics and Oral Medicine at the University of Michigan School of Dentistry, Giannobile is also a professor of biomedical engineering at the university’s College of Engineering.

After graduating from the Dental School, Giannobile completed his postdoctoral training in molecular biology at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, a Harvard Medical School-affiliated hospital, before serving as a faculty member at the Dental School.

“We are so pleased to welcome Will Giannobile, a leader who will help to ensure the School’s continued success as we seek more opportunities to support and expand the work of the University’s diversely talented biomedical community,” University President Lawrence S. Bacow said in the press release.

Giannobile has an extensive background in scholarly work about regenerative medicine, tissue engineering, and personalized medicine. His research and teaching have received national recognition from the Academy of Periodontology and the American Dental Association, according to the release.

“Will Giannobile, with his wide-ranging accomplishments as a scholar, leader, teacher and practitioner, is uniquely suited to head a school whose approach to dental health draws heavily on medicine, bioengineering and public health,” University Provost Alan M. Garber ’76 said in the release.

Giannobile will oversee the School of Dental Medicine at a time when the school will enroll its “most diverse predoctoral class in recent history,” according to the press release.

“The tradition of excellence of the School as a leader in global education, research, clinical care and societal impact creates exciting new avenues of interactions with our diverse array of students, staff, faculty, alumni and friends,” Giannobile said in the release. “The Longwood Medical Area and fruitful partnerships with the medical school and affiliates creates opportunities for collaboration to promote science, innovation and education.”

—Staff writer Virginia L. Ma can be reached at