It’s not on his resume, but that was, indeed, Dr. David J. Weber’s first scientific job. As a high school student working in a San Diego lab, he prepared rattlesnakes for research experiments.
Since then, Weber has gone on to wrangle much bigger things during his career as an infectious diseases doctor and epidemiologist, teacher, mentor, medical leader and disease prevention evangelist over four decades of epidemics and pandemics.
Today, he is associate chief medical officer and medical director of infection prevention at UNC Medical Center and the Charles Addison and Elizabeth Ann Sanders Distinguished Professor of Medicine and Pediatrics in the School of Medicine. He is also a professor of epidemiology in the Gillings School of Global Public Health.
During the COVID-19 pandemic, he has been a protector of and messenger to the University, North Carolina and colleagues near and far. He is known for reducing the latest data on diseases into useful information that he shares through television and radio interviews and frequent sessions with health care professionals and researchers. Carolina’s administration has relied on Weber’s expertise to make campus safer.
“Any infectious disease epidemiologist will say it was never a question of if we saw a pandemic, it was only a question of when,” Weber said.