Dean Deborah Deas Appointed to Stem Cell Agency Board

Organization promotes and funds promising stem cell research that could accelerate treatments to patients in need

Dean Deborah Deas

UCR School of Medicine Dean Deborah Deas.Photo by Carrie Rosema

By Kevin McCormack, CIRM

OAKLAND, Calif. – Deborah Deas, M.D., M.P.H, the Mark and Pam Rubin Dean and Chief Executive Officer for Clinical Affairs at the University of California, Riverside School of Medicine, has been appointed to the governing board of the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine (CIRM), the state’s stem cell agency.

Deas was appointed by State Treasurer John Chiang, who praised her for her: “Passion to improve health for underserved populations and to diversify the health care work force. She is committed to making the benefits of advanced medicine available to all Californians.”

“It is a great honor to be selected by the State Treasurer to serve on the CIRM Governing Board,” Deas said. “Stem cell research holds tremendous promise for new treatments for a variety of serious diseases, including cancer, heart disease and Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease. I am particularly honored to contribute to CIRM’s public mission to help patients with these unmet medical needs.”

The institute, created by voters in 2004, funds stem cell research with the goal of finding cures for serious illnesses.

Board certified in adult psychiatry, child and adolescent psychiatry and addiction psychiatry, Deas is the first representative on the board from California’s Inland Empire.

“We are delighted to have someone with Dr. Deas’s broad experience and expertise join us at CIRM,” said Jonathan Thomas, Ph.D., J.D., chair of the board. “Her medical background and her commitment to diversity and inclusion are important qualities to bring to a board that is striving to deliver stem cell treatments to patients, and to reflect the diversity of California.”

Deas earned her B.S. in biology from the College of Charleston, and followed that up by getting her M.P.H. from the University of South Carolina. She obtained her M.D. from the Medical University of South Carolina where she completed both her residency in psychiatry and a fellowship in child and adolescent psychiatry.

Her research has primarily focused on the impact of substance abuse on youth and adolescents.

UC Riverside Provost and Executive Vice Chancellor Paul D’Anieri praised Deas and said she is a great addition to the CIRM Board.

“Deborah Deas is a public servant at heart,” he added.  “Her own values and goals to help underserved patient populations align with the goals of CIRM to revolutionize medicine and bring new, innovative treatments to all patients who can benefit. I am confident that Dr. Deas’ service will have a lasting positive impact for CIRM and for the people of California.”

Deas replaces Donna Weston from the Scripps Research Institute who stepped down in February.

About CIRM

CIRM was created by the people of California to accelerate stem cell treatments to patients with unmet medical needs, and act with a sense of urgency to succeed in that mission.

To meet this challenge, CIRM’s team of highly trained and experienced professionals actively partners with both academia and industry in a hands-on, entrepreneurial environment to fast track the development of today’s most promising stem cell technologies.

With $3 billion in funding and approximately 300 active stem cell programs in their portfolio, CIRM is the world’s largest institution dedicated to helping people by bringing the future of cellular medicine closer to reality.

Media Contact


Tel: (951) 827-6050
E-mail: iqbal@ucr.edu
Twitter: UCR_Sciencenews

Additional Contacts

Kevin McCormack, CIRM
Tel: (510) 340-9147
E-mail: KMcCormack@cirm.ca.gov

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