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Rawlins to Serve as Interim Dean of Humanities and Social Sciences


JONESBORO – Dr. Brad Rawlins, dean of the College of Media and Communication at Arkansas State University, will serve as interim dean of the College of Humanities and Social Sciences, effective July 1.

Dr. Lynita Cooksey, provost and vice chancellor for academic affairs, announced the appointment today in a message to faculty and staff of the college.  Dr. Deborah Chappel Traylor will continue to serve as associate dean of Humanities and Social Sciences.

Rawlins succeeds Dr. Lauri Umansky, who has served as dean for the past three years.  Umansky, professor of history, will become director of the Heritage Studies Ph.D. program.  She came to A-State from Suffolk University, where she had served as associate dean of the College of Arts and Sciences.

"I want to thank Dr. Lauri Umansky for her outstanding leadership and service to the College of Humanities and Social Sciences," Cooksey said.  "I look forward to her continued leadership as director of the Heritage Studies program at A-State."

A member of the university staff since 2012, Rawlins also will continue as dean of Media and Communication.

"I am thrilled about this opportunity in what will be, undoubtedly, an exciting year," Rawlins said. "What thrills me the most is the opportunity to work with talented, dedicated and resourceful faculty and staff to address the opportunities and challenges facing higher education and our disciplines.  We live in interesting times and it will require collaborative, creative and critical thinking to find answers to these questions."

Rawlins is incoming president of the Association of Schools of Journalism and Mass Communication, the national association for administrators in his discipline.  He also serves on the accrediting committee of the Accrediting Council for Education in Journalism and Mass Communication and on the boards of several professional organizations, particularly in the field of public relations.

He has served on the editorial boards of four academic journals, and publishes research on ethics, transparency, authenticity, trust and stakeholder management.  Rawlins has been honored by the Institute of Public Relations with the Pathfinder Award for research that has made a significant contribution to the body of knowledge and practice of public relations.

Cooksey added the university will continue to fine-tune the details associated with the academic college restructuring process in the months ahead, and welcomes input from faculty and staff.

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Brad Rawlins
Dr. Brad Rawlins