Thanks to Dr. David Barlow

David Barlow has transitioned from his role as Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences to serve as Special Assistant to the Provost until the end of the 2015-16 academic year. In the fall, he will resume his role as Professor of Criminal Justice.

Thanks to a coincidence of timing, David served as a dean for exactly ten years; his first day as dean was February 1, 2006 and his last day was January 31, 2016. A long-time advocate of revising the faculty workload at FSU, David will assist in the implementation of our new policy.

As the dean of FSU’s largest academic unit, David contributed to FSU’s success in many ways. He worked diligently to promote effective faculty recruitment efforts that have led to many strong faculty members joining FSU during his tenure. He did an excellent job of implementing college-wide assessments that helped us meet SACS requirements and promote continuous improvement. The community college dual degree programs he developed have provided a model for other programs. He has been a helpful mentor to department chairs and faculty.

One of our most effective administrative moves was to establish the role of assistant department chair, who carried out the many tasks that arise in the summer when chairs are on leave. Work in this role has proven to be excellent preparation for serving as chair. Establishing this position was David’s idea.

With rapidly-growing enrollment and successive years of perfect licensure exam scores by its graduates, FSU’s nursing program is now one of the strongest in the nation. The direct credit goes to Dr. Arhin and the faculty, but no department is able to thrive without the support and guidance of the dean.

Despite the administrative demands of being a dean, David continued his work as a scholar. As a professor, he will have more time to devote to his research and I know he will make important contributions to the national discussion about problems related to police practices and race.

Anyone who has worked with David is well aware of his careful attention to detail. In fact, he was sometimes criticized for being “too picky.” Many who complained did not understand that he was trying to do what was expected of deans by my office and the chancellor.

I could mention many other accomplishments, but the one I consider most telling about David’s character was his response to the first faculty evaluation of deans as implemented by the Faculty Senate. Rather than become defensive and angry about negative comments, David developed and implemented an improvement plan that led to much better ratings in subsequent evaluations.

David’s willingness to learn from his critics and respond with actions to improve are marks of a good leader – and a good person!

Thanks, David, for a decade of leadership and service. FSU is a better institution thanks to your hard work and commitment to excellence!