College of Nursing names executive associate dean, Kirbo endowed chair
GAINESVILLE, Fla. — The University of Florida College of Nursing has named Debra Lyon as its executive associate dean and the Thomas M. and Irene B. Kirbo endowed chair, effective Jan. 2. Lyon comes to UF from Virginia Commonwealth University, where she serves as associate dean for research and the Judith B. Collins and Joseph M. Teefey distinguished professor.
Lyon’s research focuses on symptom management in women with breast cancer, and she is the principal investigator on two National Institutes of Health-funded studies totaling $4.8 million. She is a fellow of the American Academy of Nursing and currently serves as the co-chair of its genetic nursing and health care expert panel.
“Dr. Lyon is a noted NIH-funded researcher, outstanding scientist, and exceptional teacher and mentor. I am confident she will be a valuable addition to our college,” said Anna McDaniel, dean of the UF College of Nursing.
The Thomas M. and Irene B. Kirbo Charitable Trust, which funded the Thomas M. and Irene B. Kirbo chair in cancer research, has a history of providing student and faculty development funds and scholarships to the UF College of Nursing. The chair was established to attract a dynamic scholar whose research focuses on cancer care.
Lyon has contributed to more than 80 scientific publications and presentations, and she has served as a principal investigator or co-investigator on more than $7 million in research grants and contracts from organizations such as the National Cancer Institute and the American Cancer Society. She also has served as the chair of the major grant review committee of the Oncology Nursing Society.
As executive associate dean, Lyon will replace M. Dee Williams, who is retiring in February. Lyon has years of experience in nursing education administration, having previously served as a department chair prior to her tenure as associate dean. She also served as a faculty member at the University of Virginia from 1998 to 2004.
In the role of executive associate dean, Lyon will be responsible for day-to-day management as delegated by the dean and serve as a resource to department chairs and assistant and associate deans. Lyon will assist the dean with external relations and serve as the dean’s delegate to various committees of the university and academic health center.
“I was drawn to UF because of the multiple opportunities for leadership across the missions of education, research and service,” Lyon said. “I am honored to be named the Kirbo endowed chair and hope to facilitate the growth of interdisciplinary collaborations in cancer research across the university.”