NJMS COO Assumes Lead Role at AAMC-Group on Institutional Planning

Rutgers New Jersey Medical School’s Chief Operating Officer Walter L. Douglas, Jr., has been elected National Chair of the Association of American Medical Colleges–Group on Institutional Planning, an organization devoted to advancing the discipline of planning in academic medicine.

During his year-long tenure as National Chair, Douglas will oversee the GIP steering committee; liaise with other AAMC professional groups on behalf of the GIP; advance the GIP mission; and help facilitate the Group on Business Affairs/Group on Institutional Planning Annual Joint Spring Meeting, which will be held in Toronto next April. Douglas, whose term will run from April 2015 to April 2016, ascended to his new position during this year’s GBA/GIP spring meeting in New York.  He will serve as Chair until next April, at which time he will assume the role of Past Chair.

“It is a great honor to be elected by my peers to champion, on a national level, our discipline in the academic medicine environment. Their confidence in me is both rewarding and humbling,” said Douglas. “Furthermore, I am proud to represent NJMS and Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey, as I carry out the important work that comes with this role.”

A native of Orange, N.J., Douglas holds a degree in psychology from Rutgers. He has served as New Jersey Medical School’s Chief Operating Officer since 2013. Prior to that, Douglas was New Jersey Medical School’s Executive Director for Administration. Before joining the medical school in 2005, Douglas worked as Director of Development at the New Jersey Institute of Technology in Newark, N.J., from 2004 to 2005 and as Director of Development at Fordham University in New York from 2002 to 2004.

The GIP’s primary mission is to advance the discipline of planning in academic medicine by enhancing the skills and knowledge of professional planners; promoting the value of planning; and connecting people, resources, and ideas.  GIP’s 650 members are planning professionals who represent the full spectrum of medical teaching institutions, including medical schools, medical centers, hospitals, and other health system organizations. Its membership comprises individuals involved with space planning, strategic planning, academic planning, clinical services planning, marketing, facilities planning, information systems planning and resource planning.

“I have been known to say that the GIP is an organization of ‘Gifted and Intelligent People,’ ” Douglas said. “The truth of the matter is that GIP members are the individuals who are responsible for the seamless flow of operations at their respective institutions. We proudly work in the shadows to oversee the myriad functions that keep our institutions up-and-running. I am privileged to be their voice during the next year.”

Douglas lives in West Orange, N.J., with his wife, Diarra, and their two children, Noah, 3, and Noelle, 1.

Click here to view photos of the AAMC-GIP luncheon.