Provost and Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs Lisa Staiano-Coico and Tyler School of Art Dean Keith Morrison have announced Morrison's decision to step down as dean prior to the beginning of the spring semester so that he can devote the necessary time to his career in art.
Staiano-Coico also announced that longtime art history faculty member Professor Therese Dolan has agreed to serve as Tyler's interim dean.
Under Morrison's leadership, Tyler entered a phase of transformation. He recruited 12 tenured and tenure-track scholar/artists in the past two academic years, including four people of color and four women. During his tenure, the Tyler budget was restructured, eight studio lab technicians were appointed, a plan to merge Tyler's Elkins Park and Main Campus curricula and faculty was initiated and a plan for a global curriculum to include Africa, Asia and South America was developed. Morrison also initiated a stronger focus on an urban agenda for Tyler.
"We are grateful for the time and energy that he gave to Temple during this critical period," Staiano-Coico said.
A distinguished artist, curator and art educator, Morrison assumed his role as dean in July 2005. Morrison has attempted to balance his professional career as an artist while leading Tyler through a critical time in its history. In 2008, he will mount two international art exhibitions and write a major essay, leaving insufficient time to address the substantial needs Tyler may encounter as it moves to Main Campus in 2009. Morrison will take an administrative leave to refocus on his art career, critical writing and exhibitions. At the end of his leave, he will rejoin the Tyler faculty.
Interim Dean Therese Dolan, a respected member of the art history faculty for more than 25 years, is an expert in 19th century French art and contemporary art. Dolan has won several prestigious teaching awards, including the Temple University Great Teacher Award (2006) and the Christian R. and Mary F. Lindback Award for Distinguished Teaching (2002).
"We are grateful to have her steady hand at the helm during this transitional period," said Staiano-Coico.
Staiano-Coico will initiate a national search for a new dean.