Rohr to succeed D’Souza-Schorey as chair in Department of Biological Sciences

Author: Deanna Csomo McCool

Jason Rohr, the Ludmilla F., Stephen J., and Robert T. Galla College Professor of Biological Sciences, will step into the role of chair of the department effective July 1, 2020.

Crislyn D’Souza-Schorey, the Morris Pollard Professor in the Department of Biological Sciences, has held that position since 2014.

“Be it about strategic planning, faculty hiring, promotions, undergraduate studies, graduate programs, infrastructure, or inclusive excellence, I have relished being aspirational for the department,” D’Souza-Schorey said. “Jason has served as associate chair in the past year and I have very much enjoyed working with him. As chair, he will bring fresh perspective, commitment, talent and unparalleled energy to the role.”

Jason Rohr

Rohr joined the University of Notre Dame faculty in 2019, after working as a professor and associate chair of the Department of Integrative Biology at the University of South Florida, where he joined the faculty in 2007.

“I’m looking forward to more closely working with all the great faculty, staff, and students in the Department of Biological Sciences and the wonderful administrators at Notre Dame, and increasing the international preeminence of Notre Dame biology,” Rohr said.

He added that he wouldn’t have accepted the position as chair unless he thought the department was set on a path of success, set by D’Souza-Schorey.

“I have unquestionably large shoes to fill, but look forward to the challenge,” he said.

Rohr’s research interests encompass ecology and public health. One of his recent proposals, to the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation’s 100&Change competition, offers a sustainable, local solution to reduce schistosomiasis while at the same time addressing food, energy and water shortages throughout the developing world. His project is still in the running for the $100 million grant through the program.

Rohr earned his bachelor’s degree in biology and environmental studies as well as a doctoral degree in ecology and behavior from Binghamton University. He completed postdoctoral research at the University of Kentucky and was a research associate at Penn State University before joining the University of South Florida in 2007.