Robert N. Golden, dean of the University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health, received his bachelor of arts degree cum laude with honors in psychology from Yale University in 1975, and his medical degree from Boston University School of Medicine in 1979.

Robert Golden photo
Robert Golden is the Robert Turell Professor in Medical Leadership; dean of the School of Medicine and Public Health; vice chancellor for medical affairs at UW-Madison; and chair of the board of UW Health.

He completed an internship, residency and chief residency in psychiatry at the University of North Carolina (UNC). From 1983 to 1985, Golden was a medical staff (research) fellow in the Clinical Pharmacology Section of the National Institute of Mental Health Intramural Research Program.

He returned to the UNC School of Medicine in 1985, where he served as the founding director of both the Clinical Psychobiology/Pharmacology Research Training Program and the ECT Service, and as associate director of both the General Clinical Research Center and the Mental Health Clinical Research Center.

From 1994 through 2005, Golden served as chair of the Department of Psychiatry at the UNC School of Medicine. During his tenure, the department’s National Institutes of Health (NIH) research portfolio grew from approximately $3 million to more than $29 million, placing it in the top 10 psychiatry departments in terms of NIH competitive awards.

In 2004, Golden assumed the additional role of vice dean for the UNC School of Medicine, with responsibilities for the school’s research and educational programs, faculty development and academic affairs, and Area Health Education Centers.

In July 2006, Golden became the ninth dean of the University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health and the University of Wisconsin-Madison vice chancellor for medical affairs. He now serves as chair of the board of UW Health, the university’s academic health system. He also holds an appointment as a professor in the Department of Psychiatry.

Golden's research and clinical interests have focused on psychobiological and psychopharmacologic aspects of mood and anxiety disorders. He has published more than 230 papers and chapters. He has served on several editorial boards, review panels and advisory committees. He is associate editor for Psychosomatic Medicine.

Among his achievements, Golden has:

  • Been selected as a Ginsburg Fellow of the Group for the Advancement of Psychiatry
  • Been selected as a Laughlin Fellow of the American College of Psychiatrists and a Jefferson Pilot Fellow in Academic Medicine
  • Received the 2003 Mood Disorders Research Award from the American College of Psychiatrists and the 1993 Eugene Hargrove Mental Health Research Award
  • Was appointed as the inaugural Stuart Bondurant Distinguished Professor at the UNC at Chapel Hill
  • For several years has been listed in The Best Doctors in America and Who’s Who in the World

In 2017 he became the president-elect of the American College of Psychiatrists, and he is a director of the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology and the Association of Academic Health Centers. He is the longest serving dean at UW-Madison, and one of the longest serving medical school deans in the nation.