Selected in 2016 to serve as dean and professor of nursing at Binghamton University's Decker School of Nursing, Ortiz continues to practice and publish, while overseeing the University’s expansion to a new Health Sciences Campus.
Binghamton University, a renowned campus of The State University of New York, partnered with Storbeck/Pimentel in a search led by Stephen Leo and Beth McCarthy, ultimately selecting Ortiz, who previously served as dean, professor of nursing, and endowed chair at the Vera Z. Dwyer College of Health Sciences at Indiana University South Bend.
Ortiz has a record of success in developing healthcare programs, has established and nurtured critical partnerships with healthcare providers, and has a rich portfolio of faculty and staff development. He has garnered more than $8 million in endowments and grants.
A respected scholar, too, Ortiz focuses on nursing theory-guided research and practice. His recent scholarly work focuses on universal living experiences, such as human suffering and working.
"Astonishing Things" in View
About the search, Ortiz told Binghamton University News: “I was not looking for a job at all, but I was approached to apply and looked at the job description.” He liked what he saw, read further, and realized, “I could be someplace that’s on the verge of doing astonishing things. That’s what drew me.”
Ortiz envisions new majors, new programs, and enrollment growth. Meanwhile, along with Binghamton University President Harvey Stenger and the dean of the School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences, Gloria Meredith (also Steve Leo’s placement), he is overseeing construction of a new health sciences campus in Johnson City.
The proposed facility will offer space for the pharmacy school, the nursing school, and the biomedical engineering faculty, in addition to research space. Space will also be available to biotech companies and other start-ups working cooperatively with faculty at the new health sciences campus. The Decker School of Nursing is expected to relocate in 2018.
Ortiz earned bachelor's degrees in nursing and in the history of the arts, as well as a master’s degree in nursing from Valparaiso University. He earned a Ph.D. in nursing from Loyola University, Chicago.
Reflecting back on the search, Leo says, "It was a search that Beth and I thought would be a challenge, as many nursing dean searches are, but as we started to see the level of interest from strong candidates like Mario, we knew the search would succeed and have a long-term impact. Having worked on several searches previously at Binghamton, I also knew we had a great partner in Don Nieman, the Provost, and others at the University."