Ronald Strauss, DMD, PhD
Dr. Claude A. Adams Jr. and Mrs. Grace P. Adams Distinguished Professor
Professor, Social Medicine
Clinical Professor, Epidemiology
- BA, Biology, Queens College New York
- DMD, University of Pennsylvania
- PhD, Sociology, University of Pennsylvania
Ronald P. Strauss is University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill’s Executive Vice Provost (since 2008) and was UNC’s Chief International Officer for nearly a decade. He also holds joint appointments in three schools and is a member of the UNC Craniofacial Center Team. For twelve years, he was chair of the Department of Dental Ecology at the UNC Adams School of Dentistry.
Since he came to Carolina, Strauss has been engaged in encouraging health professional students to understand and address social factors that influence health and the provision of healthcare. Strauss is a sociologist and ethnographer who has used qualitative and survey research methods in numerous social research projects, and he serves as the Faculty Director of the SCEED Office (Strategic Community Engagement, Education and Dissemination) of the UNC Center for AIDS Research (CFAR). His global work has included being a visiting professor in Brazil and Israel, and conducting social research in Thailand, Moldova and China.
Strauss’ research has focused on the social impacts of chronic health problems, especially oral/craniofacial differences and HIV/AIDS. His work combines his clinical, social science, ethical, and health policy interests as they relate to craniofacial care, research participation, HIV/AIDS, stigma, prenatal diagnosis, and access to healthcare. Strauss continues to work as a clinician on the UNC Craniofacial Center’s interdisciplinary team providing care for cleft lip/palate and other craniofacial conditions in children and adults
As Executive Vice Provost, Strauss oversees the appointment, promotion and tenure process, directs the Targeted and Spousal Hiring Programs, the Faculty Retention Program, and coordinates senior academic searches and reviews. He provides leadership to the University’s accreditation and quality enhancement efforts, to Commencement and, to University Day.
Throughout his tenure at Carolina, Strauss has been extremely active in public service and engagement, both locally and globally. He is the lead faculty member of the Thorp Faculty Engaged Scholars Program of the Carolina Center for Public Service. In recognition of the scope and impact of his work, dental alumni endowed the Dr. Ronald P. Strauss Community and International Health Award to support students’ understanding of the social and cultural influences on health care. Each spring since 1987, he has directed and taught the campus-wide “HIV/AIDS Course.”
Strauss is a co-editor of the two volume series, The Social Medicine Reader, 3rd edition (2019, Duke University Press). He has been a keynote speaker and trainer, especially for the E.U.’s European Cleft and Craniofacial Initiative for Equality in Care (ECCE). He served as president of the American Cleft Palate-Craniofacial Association and received both its Distinguished Service Award and the Honors of the Association.