"He is the right person at the right time to lead this great college, I introduce to you Paul Klotman..."
With that, Klotman acknowledged the difficulties facing the 110-year-old medical school. Last year Baylor had a $30 million deficit. And it has racked up hundreds of millions of dollars of debt since splitting with Methodist Hospital in 2004. But Klotman says he has big plans for Baylor:
"You have to look at the strength, the financial strengths of Baylor: it has a large endowment, over a billion dollars. It's already 75 percent of the way towards a capital campaign of one billion dollars, it has a bond rating of A-. There is a lot of financial strength here at Baylor and really, the future is to grow."
Klotman's research focuses on how HIV affects kidney function. But Klotman was also chairman of medicine at Mt. Sinai, and helped that institution recover from a severe financial crisis.
"We were in really difficult times, almost didn't meet payroll. But the institution came together and things improved. As soon as we cut our expenses and started to grow, the place turned around and today there is a lot of money on hand and a building going up. That will be the future of Baylor, we just have to be disciplined in our growth."
Klotman replaces an interim president, Dr. Bill Butler. Klotman will be the fifth president since the medical school split from its parent university in 1969.