New Engineering Dean Is Named at Stanford; Health-Sciences Dean Starts at Jacksonville U.

Jacksonville U.

Christine Sapienza
June 16, 2014


Persis Drell, a professor of physics at Stanford University and a former director of the SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory, will become dean of the Stanford University School of Engineering on September 1. Ms. Drell will succeed James D. Plummer, who is stepping down after 15 years as dean.

Christine Sapienza, who was associate dean of Jacksonville University’s College of Health Sciences, became dean of the college on May 28. Before joining Jacksonville last year, she led the University of Florida’s department of speech, language, and hearing sciences for eight years.

Rebecca Chopp, president of Swarthmore College since 2009, will become chancellor of the University of Denver this summer. She will succeed Robert Coombe, who is retiring.

Jill Abramson, who was dismissed as executive editor of The New York Times in May, will be a visiting lecturer in the English department of Harvard University in the 2014-15 academic year. She will teach undergraduate courses in narrative nonfiction.

Antonio D. Tillis, an associate professor and chair of the program in African and African-American studies at Dartmouth College, will join the College of Charleston on July 1 to be dean of its School of Languages, Cultures, and World Affairs.

Linda A. Livingstone, who has been dean of Pepperdine University’s Graziadio School of Business and Management for the past 12 years, will become dean of the George Washington University School of Business on August 1. The previous dean, Doug Guthrie, was fired last year after disagreeing with the provost on budget issues.


Maxine Greene, an emerita professor in the foundations of education at Teachers College, Columbia University, died in New York on May 29. She was 96. She was known for her books and lectures on the philosophy of education and the role of the arts in learning.

Robert L. Letsinger, an emeritus professor of chemistry at Northwestern University who taught there for nearly half a century, died on May 26 in Seattle. He was 92. He helped develop the efficient method for chemical synthesis of DNA now in wide use.