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From the College of Natural Sciences

Announcing a New Leader in the School of Human Ecology

Announcing a New Leader in the School of Human Ecology

Dean Goldbart alerted faculty, staff and advisory council members in human ecology about a transition in the School.

Debby Jacobvitz, who has served with passion and commitment as director of the School of Human Ecology since 2015, has let me know that she wishes to step down from the directorship in January 2020. With new researchers joining her laboratory, Debby is eager to return her full focus to research and teaching after seventeen years of dedicated leadership in several capacities at UT. Debby will continue to study family relationships, searching for new ways to foster optimal growth and development in young children. She has let me know how grateful she is for the ongoing support of staff in the Director's Office, of staff and faculty across SoHE and from members of the School Advisory Council.

In her time as director, Debby has overseen a number of critical SoHE initiatives. These have helped foster student experiential learning, advance curricular redesign efforts across the school's majors, and deepen ties with alumni and members of the school's highly engaged Advisory Council. Also, in collaboration with SoHE faculty in HDFS and Nutritional Sciences, Debby recently created and launched a feeding intervention program. Debby's efforts have strengthened stakeholders' affiliations with the school and made important differences for students, faculty, staff, and supporters. I thank Debby for her numerous contributions and for her partnership with me and my colleagues in the Dean's Office leadership team.

I am delighted to announce that Professor Stephen Russell, Priscilla Pond Flawn Regents Professor in Child Development and chair of the Department of Human Development and Family Sciences, has accepted my invitation to serve as the next director of the School of Human Ecology, beginning in January 2020. Stephen will continue to serve as Flawn Professor and chair of HDFS. I look forward with excitement to partnering with Stephen as we work, in partnership with our colleagues, to further elevate UT's School of Human Ecology.

I am sure you will want to join me in thanking Debby for her dedicated service and Stephen for his willingness to accept this essential leadership role.

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Thursday, 23 September 2021

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