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New dean named for School of Urban and Public Affairs

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Tuesday, June 24, 2008

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Media Contact: Sue Stevens

ARLINGTON - Dr. Barbara Becker has been named dean of the School of Urban and Public Affairs (SUPA) at The University of Texas at Arlington. Dr. Becker has more than two decades of experience in higher education and for the last 10 years has served as director of the School of Planning and the Planning Degree Program at the University of Arizona.

Dr. Becker is both an experienced administrator and an accomplished faculty member. She has more than 35 publications and presentations in her field, and has secured more than $1 million in grant funding. She is co-author of a widely used text, “Community Planning: An Introduction to the Comprehensive Plan,” and a Fellow of the American Institute of Certified Planners.

She earned her master of science and doctoral degrees in community and regional planning and geography, and a bachelor of science in social studies, all from The University of Texas at Austin. She joined the faculty in the Department of Geography, Geology and Planning at Missouri State University in 1988 and became the coordinator for the Community and Regional Planning Program in 1989. In 1995, she joined the University of Arizona as associate director of the Roy P. Drachman Institute for Land and Regional Development Studies and in 1998 became director of the university’s School of Planning.

“We look forward to welcoming Dr. Becker to SUPA in early August,” said Interim Provost Ronald Elsenbaumer. “Search committee chair Don Gatzke (dean of the School or Architecture) and his committee brought forward a strong group of candidates from which Dr. Becker was selected.”Dr. Becker will succeed Dr. Richard Cole, whom Elsenbaumer said had provided tremendous leadership to the School of Urban and Public Affairs. Dr. Cole will serve as Visiting Senior Research Fellow at the LBJ School of Public Affairs at The University of Texas at Austin for the next academic year and then return to teach at UT Arlington. Dr. Becker will be joining the University in early August.

"I am excited by the opportunity to work with such a dedicated group of faculty and to get involved in the School of Urban and Public Affair's exemplary community outreach efforts in these challenging times," she said.

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The University of Texas at Arlington is an Equal Opportunity and Affirmative Action employer.

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