Professor Emeritus Paul C. Johnson, founding faculty member of the College of Medicine – Tucson and the first head of the Department of Physiology, died Feb. 21 at the age of 93.
Johnson, who earned his doctorate from the University of Michigan, served on the faculty of Indiana University from 1956-1967. He joined the University of Arizona in 1967 and was charged by Merlin DuVal, the college's founding dean, with creating a physiology department and recruiting a world-class faculty. Among his first hires was Bill Dantzler, professor emeritus of physiology, who says Johnson built a successful department by putting equal focus on creative research and high-quality teaching.
"He firmly believed that a high-quality research program enhanced the teaching program, and that excellent teaching stimulated thinking about research problems," Dantzler said. "This atmosphere pervaded the department and was fundamental in the development of the department and the recruiting of outstanding young faculty."