Twelve Women Faculty Members Who Are Taking on New Assignments in Higher Education

Ruth L. Bush was appointed associate dean for medical education at the University of Houston College of Medicine. She has been serving as a professor of medicine and surgery at the College of Medicine at Baylor University and deputy director of the Center for Innovations in Quality, Effectiveness and Safety at the Michael E. DeBakey Veterans Affairs Medical Center.

Dr. Bush is a graduate of Cornell University in Ithaca, New York. She holds a master of public health degree and a medical doctorate from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. She also earned a juris doctorate at the Taft Law School in Santa Ana, California.

Amy Freeman, who has been serving as a research assistant professor and associate provost at Tufts University in Massachusetts, was named director of the Millennium Scholars Program at Pennsylvania State University.

Dr. Freeman is a graduate of Washington State University, where she majored in construction management. She holds a master’s degree in architectural engineering and a doctorate in workforce education and development from Pennsylvania State University.

Pamela Cheek, an associate professor of French at the University of New Mexico, has been given the added duties as associate provost for curriculum and assessment at the university. Professor Check joined the faculty at the university in 1996.

Dr. Cheek is a magna cum laude graduate of Harvard University. She earned a Ph.D. in comparative literature at Stanford University.

Gracie Lawson-Borders, professor of communications and dean of the School of Communication at Howard University in Washington, D.C., was appointed vice president of the Association of Schools of Journalism and Mass Communications. She will become president-elect in 2019 and president of the organization in 2020.

Dr. Lawson Borders is a graduate of Michigan State University. She earned a master’s degree at Northwestern University in Evanston, Illinois, and a Ph.D. from Wayne State University in Detroit.

Angela Fagerlin was appointed to a Jon M. Huntsman Presidential Faculty Chair at the University of Utah. She is a professor of population health sciences at the university.

Professor Fagerlin is a graduate of Hope College in Holland, Michigan. She earned a master’s degree and a Ph.D. in experimental psychology from Kent State University in Ohio.

Alexa Sand, a professor in the department of art and design at Utah State University, has been given the added duties of associate vice president for research and associate dean of graduate studies at the university. She is the author of Vision, Devotion, and Self Representation in Late Medieval Art (Cambridge University Press, 2014).

Dr. Sand is a graduate of Williams College in Williamstown, Massachusetts, where she majored in art history. She earned a Ph.D. from the University of California, Berkeley.

Amy Gonzales will be joining the faculty in the department of communications at the University of California, Santa Barbara. She will begin teaching in the Spring 2019 semester. She has been teaching at Indiana University.

Dr. Gonzales holds a master’s degree in social psychology from the University of Texas at Austin. She earned a second master’s degree and a Ph.D. in communication from Cornell University in Ithaca, New York.

Robin Bernstein, the Dillon Professor of American History at Harvard University was named a Harvard College Professor. The Harvard College Professorships were launched in 1997. They are five-year appointments that include extra support for research or scholarly activities, as well as a semester of paid leave, or summer salary.

Professor Bernstein’ is the author of several books including Racial Innocence: Performing American Childhood from Slavery to Civil Rights (New York University Press, 2011). She is a graduate of Bryn Mawr College in Pennsylvania. Dr. Bernstein holds master’s degrees from the University of Maryland and George Washington University and a Ph.D. in American studies from Yale University.

Digna R. Velez Edwards, an associate professor of obstetrics and gynecology at the Vanderbilt University Medical Center, was appointed director of Women’s Health Research at the university.

A native of Panama, Dr. Velez Edwards holds a bachelor’s degree, a master’s degree in applied statistics, and a Ph.D. in human genetics, all from Vanderbilt University.

Cynthia Blair, an associate professor of African American studies and history at the University of Illinois at Chicago, was named interim director of the university’s African American Cultural Center.

Dr. Blair began teaching at the university in 1996. A graduate of the University of Michigan, she earned a master’s degree and a Ph.D. at Harvard University.

Annie Labatt was appointed associate professor of visual studies and director of galleries and museums at Sweet Briar College in Virginia. She has been teaching at the University of Texas at San Antonio.

Dr. Labatt is a graduate of Barnard College in New York City. She holds a Ph.D. in art history from Yale University.

Patricia Thompson, an assistant dean in the School of Journalism and New Media at the University of Mississippi,  was appointed executive director of the Accrediting Council on Education in Journalism and Mass Communications. The association, which had been based at the University of Kansas, will now move to Mississippi.

Thompson joined the faculty at the university in 2009 after working as a writer and editor for several major newspapers. She is a graduate of the journalism school at the University of Missouri.


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