Vice President, University of Illinois
Chancellor, Chicago Campus
Paula Allen-Meares assumed the duties of Chancellor and John Corbally Presidential Professor at the University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC) in January 2009. A member of the Institute of Medicine of the National Academies, she is an international expert in social work, with emphasis on mental health issues among vulnerable and low-income communities.
After receiving her bachelor's degree from the State University of New York at Buffalo and master's and Ph.D. degrees from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Dr. Allen-Meares also received the Management Institute Certificate from Harvard University; completed the Executive Development Center’s Senior Administrator Seminar at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign’s College of Commerce and Business Administration; and received the Management of Managers Certificate from the University of Michigan School of Business Administration.
In 1993, Dr. Allen-Meares was appointed Dean of the University of Michigan School of Social Work, ranked No. 1 in the United States for nearly a decade. The numbers of dual degree programs, jointly appointed faculty, and collaborations with other academic units all increased during her deanship.
Under her leadership, the School’s endowment grew from $1 million to $43 million, and externally-funded research awards reached more than $100 million. She also led the fundraising, building, and relocation of the social work program into a state-of-the-art facility on the U-M campus.
Dr. Allen-Meares is author or co-author of more than 100 publications and articles and serves on the editorial boards of several scholarly journals and publications. Her research interests include the functions of social workers in educational settings; psychopathology in children, adolescents, and families; adolescent sexuality; and premature parenthood.
Dr. Allen-Meares was inducted as a member of the Institute of Medicine in 2005 and serves on its Membership Committee and as Vice Chair of Section X. She is a New York Academy of Medicine Trustee and Fellow and currently serves on the academy’s panel on long-term care issues in the United States, the Steering Committee, the Social Work Leadership Institute Public Policy Committee (ex-officio/President), and serves as Chair of the National Advisory Panel—Practicum Partnership Program Adoption Initiative. Dr. Allen-Meares served as a member of the Board of Trustees of the William T. Grant Foundation from 1999 to 2008 and as Chair of the Nomination Committee from 2004 to 2007. She was also a founding member of the National Center for Institutional Diversity.
UIC is Chicago’s largest university and a major academic research center. It has over 28,000 undergraduate, graduate, and professional students; close to 12,000 faculty and staff (making it one of Chicago’s 20 largest employers); a budget of $2 billion; and 15 colleges, including the nation’s largest college of medicine. UIC also operates the state’s major public medical center and regional health sciences campuses in Peoria, Rockford, and Urbana-Champaign.