Office of the President

Wilson Hall, Room 204
371 Wilson Boulevard
Rochester, MI 48309-4486
(location map)


Ora Hirsch Pescovitz, M.D.

A headshot of Ora Hirsch Pescovitz.Ora Hirsch Pescovitz, M.D., is President of Oakland University, a public university in southeastern Michigan with more than 19,000 students. She is a renowned leader in higher education, and has an international reputation as a health-care executive, pediatric endocrinologist and researcher who has published more than 190 papers and books.

Dr. Pescovitz’s tenure at Oakland University began in July of 2017. Her experience is distinguished by a range of academic, medical, research and business expertise, along with cutting-edge insights on education, healthcare and the challenges of serving patients in a fast-changing environment. She is a sought-after speaker on a range of topics, including education, healthcare, leadership and women’s issues.

Dr. Pescovitz earned her medical degree from Northwestern University’s Feinberg School of Medicine; she received Distinguished Alumni Awards from the Feinberg School of Medicine and Northwestern University. Her primary research has focused on the physiologic and molecular mechanisms responsible for disorders of growth and puberty, and the development of novel therapies for these conditions. She has received numerous awards for her research, teaching, and leadership.

During her extensive 21-year career at Indiana University, she served as Executive Associate Dean for Research Affairs at the Indiana University School of Medicine, President and CEO of Riley Hospital for Children, and interim Vice President for Research Administration for IU.

From 2009-2014, she was the University of Michigan’s first female Executive Vice President for Medical Affairs and Health System CEO. In this role, she led a system that included three hospitals, more than 120 health centers and clinics, and the University of Michigan Medical School. She oversaw $3.3 billion in revenue and $490 million in research funding. During this time, she was elected to the National Academy of Medicine.

From 2014-2017, Dr. Pescovitz was Eli Lilly and Company’s Senior Vice President and U.S. Medical Leader for Lilly Biomedicines. Dr. Pescovitz served as president of the Society for Pediatric Research, the nation’s largest pediatric research organization; president of the Lawson Wilkins (North American) Pediatric Endocrine Society, and chair of March of Dimes Grants Review Committee. She also served on the University of Florida Health System Strategic Cabinet, Anthem-Lilly Joint Research Governance Council, and Advancement Council of the Indiana University Fairbanks School of Public Health. She also served on the boards of the Hormone Foundation, National Association of Children’s Hospitals and Related Institutions (NACHRI), Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals, National Institutes of Health (NIH) Advisory Board for Clinical Research and the Board of Life Technology (prior to its sale to Thermo Fisher). At Life Technology, she served on the Compensation and Organizational Development and the Regulatory Oversight Committees.

She has chaired the fundraising campaign for the United Way of Washtenaw County (Michigan), served on the United Way of Central Indiana’s executive committee, was a member of the Heart Walk Executive Cabinet of the American Heart Association, and co-chaired the Health Planning Committee for Indianapolis Mayor Joe Hogsett’s Transition Team. Dr. Pescovitz was also chair of the Indiana University Center for Global Health/AMPATH-Kenya Development Board and served on the boards of the Indianapolis Opera and Indiana University Borns Jewish Studies program, among others.

Dr. Pescovitz serves on the Board of Directors of Priority Health (01/21), United Way of Southeastern Michigan (01/21), Medical Main Street of Oakland County, the Detroit Economic Club, Transformative AI Limited, the Governing Board of Gift of Life, Michigan, the Horizon League Board of Directors and Executive Committee, the Board of Directors, Executive Committee, and Chair for the Michigan Association of State Universities, Citizens Research Council of Michigan Board of Trustees, the 149 Medical Inc. Board of Advisors, Co-Chair of the Detroit Drives Degrees Leadership Council, and Innovation Ventures Advisory Board for Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center, a corporate member of the Rochester Rotary Club, a member of the Michigan Chapter of the International Women’s Forum, Honorary Member of the Oakland University Chapter of Golden Key International Honor Society, a member of Governor Whitmer’s Michigan Economic Recovery Council and Advisor to the Greater Detroit Area Health Council Strategic Planning Committee among others.

Her late husband, Dr. Mark Pescovitz, was a renowned transplant surgeon at Indiana University. She is a proud mother to three children, three in-law children, and five grandchildren. Her partner, Dr. Daniel Walsh is a cardiologist at Beaumont.

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