Denise Monack, PhD, Named Chair of the Department of Microbiology & Immunology

April 5, 2022

I am delighted to announce that Denise Monack, PhD, Professor of Microbiology and Immunology, has been appointed Chair of the Department of Microbiology and Immunology. Dr. Monack began in this role on April 1.

Dr. Monack has been in Stanford’s Department of Microbiology and Immunology for 38 years and had served as the department’s Associate Chair since 2019. In this time, she has established herself as a foremost researcher in the area of bacterial pathogens and immune responses to infection – publishing more than 110 peer-reviewed articles and presenting findings at universities, conferences, and symposia around the world. In 2018, Dr. Monack was the senior author of a study that identified a molecule that inhibited the growth of Salmonella in mice, offering a potential pathway for the development of a new treatment for the 1.2 million people sickened each year by the bacteria.

Beyond her basic science expertise, Dr. Monack has earned acclaim at Stanford Medicine and broadly within her field as an innovative and visionary leader and a respected mentor and teacher. Many alumni of her lab have gone on to serve as faculty and senior scientists at leading universities and biotech companies. Outside of Stanford, Dr. Monack has held multiple leadership roles within the American Society of Microbiology, including her 2020 election as its Governor, and serves on multiple editorial boards for journals including PLoS Pathogens, Infection and Immunity, and Pathogens and Disease.

Dr. Monack began her Stanford School of Medicine career in 1984 as a life science technician before becoming a research assistant, a role which she held until 1998. She earned her PhD in Microbiology and Immunology from Stanford School of Medicine in 2002, then served as a senior research scientist within the department before becoming assistant professor in 2007. Dr. Monack’s depth and breadth of experience within the Department of Microbiology and Immunology will inform and contribute to her leadership as chair.

I want to thank David Schneider, PhD, for his exemplary leadership of the Department of Microbiology and Immunology. As chair, Dr. Schneider built upon the department’s 100-year legacy of innovation and discovery and further elevated its standing among the basic science community. Dr. Schneider stepped down as chair at the conclusion of his five-year term and will remain within Stanford’s Department of Microbiology and Immunology focusing on his research.

Please join me in congratulating Dr. Monack on her new role within the Department of Microbiology and Immunology.


Lloyd B. Minor, MD
Dean, Stanford School of Medicine