Executive Vice President and Provost Steven Leslie announced this week that he plans to step down from his administrative duties effective Aug. 31 to return to research and teaching. He has served as provost since January 2007, before which he was dean of the College of Pharmacy.
"I've held this position for six years longer than most provosts. I've been proud to stand by President Bill Powers' side and do the important work of this institution. I've reached a point where I realize there are more things I want to do before I retire like write, teach and other projects that can advance the goals of higher education."
During Leslie's tenure as provost, the office's responsibilities were restructured not only to oversee the traditional academic deans, admissions and information management, but also the registrar and financial aid. He has also served as a guiding force in laying the groundwork for the Dell School of Medicine, which is expected to enroll its first students in 2016.
A national search will be launched soon to find a new provost.
"For the past six years, Provost Leslie has been an indispensable partner in transforming the academic life of The University of Texas," said university President Bill Powers. "He has guided our deans and vice provosts with a steady hand and a vision that encompasses all aspects of this vast university. We're happy he has decided to remain on the Forty Acres and continue the academic life at which he has excelled for so long."
Leslie is the Bauerle Centennial Professor in the College of Pharmacy. He joined the university in 1974 as an assistant professor in the College of Pharmacy. With the exception of two years at the University of Alabama at Birmingham Medical Center, he has spent his professional career at the university.
An internationally noted researcher in alcoholism and alcohol abuse, Leslie was director of the university's Institute for Neuroscience from 1986 to 1992.
He earned his bachelor's degree in pharmacy in 1969, his master's degree in pharmacology/toxicology in 1972 and his Ph.D. in pharmacology/toxicology in 1974, all from Purdue University.