Kosali Simon named Herman B Wells Endowed Professor

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BLOOMINGTON, Ind. -- Kosali Simon, a professor in the School of Public and Environmental Affairs at Indiana University Bloomington, has been appointed a Class of 1948 Herman B Wells Endowed Professor, an award bestowed previously on only two other IU faculty members.

Simon is a nationally known health economist whose research applies economic analysis to questions about health insurance and health care policy. She has published widely on the Affordable Care Act and its impact on health care and labor market outcomes. She is also a national leader in her profession, serving on several boards and in editorial positions.

The Herman B Wells Endowed Professor position was endowed by the IU Bloomington Class of 1948 to honor Herman B Wells, who served as Indiana University’s 11th president from 1937 until he retired in 1962 and university chancellor from 1962 until his death in 2000.

IU faculty who were previously appointed to the profesorship are the late Myrtle Scott, who was a professor in the School of Education and associate dean of the Graduate School, and Abhijit Basu, professor emeritus of geological sciences and Class of 1948 Herman B Wells Endowed Professor in the College of Arts and Sciences.

“The Class of 1948 endowed this position to enrich the educational experience and to emphasize the values that Chancellor Wells exemplified, including devotion to diversity, inclusion and academic excellence,” said Eliza Pavalko, vice provost for faculty and academic affairs, who announced the appointment. “Professor Simon is an exceptional candidate to carry forth these values for the campus.

Simon is highly regarded for her teaching as well as her scholarship. She received the Indiana University Trustees Award for Teaching in 2015 and has received several national research awards.

“Kosali Simon's dedication to higher education and her unbounded energy are reminiscent of the passion that characterized Herman B Wells during his leadership of Indiana University,” said Michael McGuire, executive associate dean of SPEA. “The School of Public and Environmental Affairs and IU are fortunate to have Kosali representing that legacy through the endowed professorship."

An IU Bloomington faculty member since 2010, Simon is a research associate of the National Bureau for Economic Research and has just concluded a seven-year term as a board member of the American Society of Health Economists. She serves on the board of the American Economic Association’s Committee on the Status of Women in Economics, where she directs a national mentoring program for female assistant professors in economics. Simon was also recently elected to the leadership team of the Association for Public Policy Analysis and Management and is an associate editor of Health Economics and an editorial board member of the American Journal of Health Economics and the Journal of Policy Analysis and Management.

With the appointment, Simon will carry the title of 1948 Herman B Wells Endowed Professor for the remainder of her career at IU Bloomington. She will receive a grant of $10,000 per year for five years, designated for activities that enrich the educational experience at IU Bloomington. Simon plans to use these funds to create research fellowships for undergraduate students.