Dr. Brookie Best Named Dean of the Skaggs School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences

It is with great pleasure that we announce the appointment of Brookie Best, Pharm.D., M.A.S., as the new dean of the Skaggs School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences, effective August 1, 2022. 

Dean Best, a professor of clinical pharmacy and pediatrics who had been serving as interim dean, succeeds James McKerrow, Ph.D., M.D., who stepped down June 30, 2022. As dean, Dr. Best will provide strategic and intellectual leadership, plus administrative oversight, for a dynamic and growing enterprise that spans education, research and clinical care. 

The Skaggs School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences is one of only three public schools of pharmacy in California and is ranked among the top 20 pharmacy schools in the nation by U.S. News & World Report. It has an enrollment of 280 Pharm.D. students and trains masters and Ph.D. students, dual-degree students, and post-doctoral residents and fellows. The annual graduating classes of approximately 70 Doctor of Pharmacy students, 25 Drug Development and Product Management Master of Science students, graduate students and postdoctoral scholars have diverse interests, skills and training that will continue to transform pharmacy and pharmaceutical sciences, and improve human health. 

Over virtually its entire history, Dean Best has been an important contributor to the Skaggs School. She joined its faculty in 2003, just one year after the school debuted its inaugural class. Her interests and efforts have engaged every aspect of the institution’s mission. She has mentored more than 130 students and served as both a faculty and career advisor. In 2014, she received UC San Diego’s Distinguished Teaching Award for Academic Senate Members and was named Professor of the Year by the Associated Students three times in 2010, 2013 and 2020.

Her research, which includes 20 years of designing and conducting pediatric and obstetric pharmacokinetic clinical trials, focuses on understanding pharmacokinetics — the processes by which drugs are absorbed, distributed, metabolized and eliminated by the body. She has studied maternal/fetal and pediatric clinical pharmacology, exploring the effects of anti-HIV drugs in pregnant women, children and non-pregnant adults, and drugs used to treat Kawasaki disease, the leading cause of acquired heart disease in children.  

Dean Best has authored more than 130 peer-reviewed papers, lectured on maternal and pediatric drug therapeutics at the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases and the International Maternal Pediatric Adolescent AIDS Clinical Trials network, and served on working groups and advisory committees for the National Institutes of Health, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and the World Health Organization.

Dr. Best completed her Bachelor of Science degree in chemistry at UC San Diego in 1994, then her Doctor of Pharmacy at UC San Francisco in 1999, followed by a residency in pharmacy practice at UC San Diego. In 2001, she was awarded a three-year fellowship in Pediatric Clinical Pharmacology Research from the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development. In 2007, Dean Best earned a Master of Advanced Studies in Clinical Research at UC San Diego. 

Please join us in congratulating Dean Best, an admired and trusted colleague for many years with the talent, dedication and experience to lead the Skaggs School for many more years to come.