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Dean’s withdrawal requires replacement

February 4, 2010

The search for a new Dean for the College of Arts and Sciences is set to begin in late spring as soon as a search committee is put together, according to Provost and Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs Fernando Delgado.

The current Dean of CAS, Terry Brown, has accepted the position of Provost and Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs at UW-Parkside, and will be leaving UW-River Falls in mid-March. Associate Dean Brad Caskey will step in as the Interim Dean as soon as Brown leaves and for the 2010-2011 academic year.

“Brad Caskey will help with the transition,” Delgado said. “He offers good continuity with his experience as filling in for interim dean in the past.”

Caskey stepped in as interim Dean last year when Brown was filling in as Interim Provost. The search committee should be put together by the end of the spring semester, followed by a vacancy announcement posted this summer, according to Delgado. He hopes to start interviews for the position by the end of the fall 2010 semester. The process of filling a position like the Dean usually takes about three to four months, according to Delgado. This process gives the committee time to interview multiple candidates.

“We have a lot of momentum and plenty of time,” Physics department chair Earl Blodgett said.

The search committee will consist of 10-12 faculty members from CAS. The College consists of 25 areas of study from Art to Women’s Studies, according to the UWRF Web site. It is important that the search committee consists of well-informed and conscientious faculty from a wide range of areas and backgrounds to decide who is qualified to take this position, according to Delgado. Once the search has begun, members of the committee are not allowed to discuss what is going on until the position is filled, according to Blodgett.

“We will work together to assure a deep, diverse and highly qualified pool of applicants to ensure that the college continues to have strong and visionary leadership,” Delgado said.

There are several other searches underway for other positions on campus. The Dean of the College of Education and Professional Studies, Faye Perkins, will be leaving after this spring semester, and a search committee has been working on finding her replacement. There are also searches going on to replace Associate Vice-Chancellor of Business and Finances Doug Johnson and Chief Diversity Officer Craig Morris.

There were at least six interim positions last year, and it is common that people don’t hold the same position for 25 years or so like they used to, according to Caskey.

“Dean Brown has been a vital member of this campus for two decades, and she has made significant contributions to our students, her home department, the College of Arts and Sciences and the University,” Delgado said. “Succinctly put, she will be missed, and we wish her all the best.”