Honoring Visionary Leadership: The John F. Greden, M.D., Legacy Research Fund


John Greden
Dr. John Greden

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John F. Greden, M.D.

Rachel Upjohn Professor of Psychiatry and Clinical Neurosciences, Active Emeritus
Founder, University of Michigan Comprehensive Depression Center
Emeritus Research Professor, Michigan Neuroscience Institute
Founding Chair, National Network of Depression Centers 
Chair Emeritus, University of Michigan Department of Psychiatry

Creating a Legacy

In 2001, Dr. John F. Greden founded the University of Michigan Depression Center — the first of its kind in the United States. Two decades later, in 2021, he stepped down as its executive director. To honor his tremendous achievements and inspiring leadership, a group of alumni, faculty, staff, family, patients, and friends of the Depression Center and the Department of Psychiatry have established a research endowment in his name. Gifts to the John F. Greden, M.D., Legacy Research Fund support and accelerate the robust depression research program that has thrived under his leadership. Help us reach our goal of $2 million to ensure we can continue advancing life-changing research in perpetuity.

The John F. Greden, M.D., Legacy Research Fund will lend critical support to the Depression Center’s future endeavors to fund early-stage, high-risk, high-reward precision-treatment projects, as well as new interventional treatment strategies. It will build on Dr. Greden’s talent for recognizing and bringing to fruition great potential in both individuals and promising areas of scientific advancement. The fund will be managed by future executive directors of the Depression Center, who will carry on his commitment to pursuing personalized treatments for depression, bipolar illness, and related disorders through cutting-edge research and discovery.

A Brief History of Dr. Greden’s Contributions to the Depression Center — and the Field

To address the huge health burdens, disabilities, and costs associated with clinical depressions, bipolar disorders, and related conditions, Dr. Greden proposed establishing the first comprehensive depression center in the country at the University of Michigan. Approved by the Regents in 2001, the Depression Center-Ambulatory Psychiatry facility opened in 2006 and is the only depression center partially supported by National Institutes of Health funding. In 2007, Dr. Greden stepped down as chair of the University of Michigan Medical School Department of Psychiatry — a position he held for 22 years — to focus on directing the Depression Center while leading efforts to establish other dedicated depression/bipolar centers nationwide; 25 National Network of Depression Center institutions now collaborate on important projects.

Michigan’s inaugural depression center initially united 75 faculty members. Today, 344 participants from 17 affiliated schools, centers, and institutes across 22 departments at U-M comprise its membership. A few of the center’s innovative research projects include exploring biomarkers of ketamine response, creating precision treatments through combinatorial pharmacogenomics, using smartphones to detect bipolar symptoms, incorporating artificial intelligence and machine learning in care, and studying sleep chronobiology. In addition, the center has developed and disseminated several tailored prevention and treatment models for high school and college students, military members and veterans, medical interns, athletes, and infants.
The progress we have made in research at the Depression Center has been driven by Dr. Greden’s partnerships with faculty, colleagues, individuals, families, and foundations — all recognizing the critical need to find more effective treatments and, eventually, cures for debilitating mood disorders.

Please consider joining us in this special effort to secure the future of the research program at the Depression Center by ensuring that Dr. Greden’s legacy of discovery continues.
Contribute online at victors.us/gredenlegacy  or contact Nancy Davis at 734-763-4858 or nandavis@umich.edu.


Dr. John F. Greden joined the faculty at the U-M Medical School in 1974 and served as chair of the Department of Psychiatry from 1985 to 2007. He has authored or co-authored more than 400 articles; refereed abstracts, books, and book chapters; and presented approximately 335 invited lectures — including 10 keynote addresses for the American Psychiatric Association’s Psychiatry Young Investigators’ Colloquium. With nearly three decades of funding from the National Institutes of Health as an investigator, co-investigator, and consultant, he has focused his major research on using biomarkers to develop treatment strategies to prevent recurrences of depression and bipolar disorders. He has mentored more than a dozen NIH and Veterans Administration career development award recipients, and 10 individuals who completed residencies at the Department of Psychiatry when Dr. Greden was chair are now department chairs at other universities. Dr. Greden earned his B.S. and M.D. at the University of Minnesota. He completed an internship at Harbor/UCLA Medical Center and his residency in psychiatry at the University of Minnesota Hospitals and Walter Reed Army Medical Center in Washington, D.C.

John F. Greden, M.D., Legacy Research Fund Benefactor Levels

Please consider joining us in this special effort to secure the future of the research program at the Depression Center by ensuring that Dr. Greden’s legacy of discovery continues.
All contributions made before July 1, 2021, will be acknowledged in an honor roll to be included in a special commemorative program book celebrating Dr. Greden and the launch of the John F. Greden, M.D., Legacy Research Fund.

  • $5,000-$9,999 - Donors at this level will have an opportunity to include a personal message in the commemorative program book.
  • $10,000-$99,999 - A personal or family photo and a message from donors at this level will be included in the commemorative program book.
  • $100,000 and up - Benefactors at this level will be recognized in the commemorative program book as well as on a new permanent plaque alongside Dr. Greden’s portrait in the Depression Center’s Greden Family Suite.

All gift levels include multi-year pledges and bequests.

*The fund constitutes a gift for endowment and distributions from it shall be made in accordance with the university’s then existing endowment distribution policy. At the university’s discretion, any surplus distributions at the end of any fiscal year may be held and spent later for the above purpose or added to the principal of the fund for investment.