Skip to Content

School of Medicine Greenville

Faculty Profile

Faculty and Staff

Robert G. Best, Ph.D.

Title: Professor
Biomedical Sciences
School of Medicine Greenville
Phone: 864-455-9812
Office: 701 Grove Road
Greenville SC 29605


Background: It is a tremendous honor to have served the faculty of the University of South Carolina School of Medicine Greenville in the role of associate dean for faculty affairs and professional development from 2011 to 2020! Faculty are the thought engine of all of our learning programs and our most outward-facing representatives through whom our medical school earns its reputation.

Our University, including both medical schools, is fully committed to the concepts of shared governance and academic freedom. Faculty are uniquely qualified to determine the best approaches to teaching, learning, assessment of learners, domains of research, standards for grading and promoting students, and standards for evaluating and promoting faculty based on academic achievements. These powers are granted to the faculty by the Board of Trustees of the University and are articulated in our Faculty Manual.

As a longstanding faculty member, my expertise and passions include excellence in the delivery of medical genetics services, advancement of ethical approaches to changes in medicine, faculty voice in governance, and the advancement of evidence-based approaches to leadership and teamwork.

As a leader, I fully embrace a model of servant leadership in which leaders accept their responsibilities to serve the mission of their offices and institution by cultivating success in those under their charge. The five primary roles unique to leaders include articulation of a clear and compelling vision, keeping their teams focused on the mission, making certain that the right people are in the right (and well-defined) positions, promotion of a healthy and vibrant culture of inclusion and respect, and judicious stewardship over resources to optimize the mission.

Leaders also must manage their teams well to achieve optimal results. In an age of increasing ambiguity, change and uncertainty, leaders and teams must adopt a growth mindset, take intelligent risks in the face of incomplete information, learn from setbacks and failures, address toxic forms of conflict decisively and channel ideological conflict as a powerful source to drive innovation and escape the status quo.

Robert G Best, Ph.D., FACMG, founding associate dean for administrative and faculty affairs for the University of South Carolina School of Medicine Greenville, and executive director for faculty affairs and professional development for the Greenville Health System, has extensive experience as a medical geneticist, medical educator, and as a Professor with 34 years on the faculty at UofSC where he has served as Chair of the Faculty Senate and many other roles in faculty governance. His research interests include the delivery of medical genetics service, neural tube defect prevention, emerging medical technologies and ethical, legal and social issues in medical genetics and health care. After directing the regional medical genetics center in Columbia for 20+ years, he joined the senior leadership team for a new medical school launch in 2011. He continues to serve his profession through leadership roles in professional societies, national committees (American College of Medical Genetics & Genomics, College of American Pathologists) and is active in writing clinical practice guidelines in genetics. He is a passionate student of leadership, learning/teaching, culture change and the recruitment and retention of academic leadership.

Graduating in 1987 from North Carolina State University (Genetics and Toxicology), he is certified through the American Board of Medical Genetics in two specialties (medical genetics and clinical cytogenetics), is a founding fellow of the American College of Medical Genetics and a founding member of three professional societies in medical genetics and nanomedicine. He presently oversees offices of Faculty Affairs and Continuing Medical Education for the academic health center in Greenville, SC where has been active in leading culture change around professional development to move from passive learning toward active learning and closing practice gaps.

Teaching Interest(s): Leadership & teams
Medical Genetics
Ethics in medicine
Research Interest(s): Medical genetics
Delivery of medical genetics services
Emerging technologies in genetics and medicine
Honors & Awards: Election to the Alpha Omega Alpha (AOA) Medical Honor Society
Harvard Macy Foundation Fellow
Richard A. Rempel Faculty Award
Tuberculosis Advocate of the Year
Outstanding Alumnus Award
Established Master Teacher Award
Research Advancement Award
Teaching Advancement Award
Research Advancement Award
Teaching Advancement Award
Executive Leadership Institute
National Faculty Award
Teaching Advancement Award
Teaching Advancement Award
Teaching Advancement Award
Teaching Advancement Award
Professional Affiliations: American College of Medical Genetics
Other - Founding Fellow
Cancer Cytogenomics Microarray Consortium
Other - Secretary
American Cytogenetics Conference
Other - Founding Board Member & Member, Board of Directors

Challenge the conventional. Create the exceptional. No Limits.