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A search for the next dean of the College of Education, Health, and Human Sciences is under way, Provost and Senior Vice Chancellor David Manderscheid announced Tuesday. Dean Bob Rider had previously informed the college of his plans to return to the faculty.


Jeff Fairbrother, professor and associate dean of academic and faculty affairs, has been appointed interim dean effective July 1. Manderscheid said he hopes to have a new dean in place by early 2020.

“I want to thank Dean Rider for his service to the university,” said Manderscheid. “His commitment to students, his advocacy for the college, and his record of taking the work of the university into the community have been hallmarks of his decade and a half of service as dean. I also want to thank Dr. Fairbrother for agreeing to step into this role. I have confidence in his leadership as we move toward a new era for the college.”

Rider will serve as a faculty member in the Department of Educational Leadership and Policy Studies. Before joining the college as dean in 2004, Rider was dean of Butler University’s College of Education from 2001 to 2004 and a professor, center director, and associate dean for research and graduate studies at Florida State University’s College of Education from 1979 to 2001. He received his PhD in education from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in 1978.

“I’m grateful for my time as dean and appreciate all the support I’ve received through the years,” Rider said. “I look forward to the opportunity to return to teaching and working with students.”

As interim dean, Fairbrother will oversee operations of the college, whose graduate school was recently recognized in the top 50 among public institutions. The college also earned UT a top rating for teacher preparation in Tennessee for the past two years, annually preparing approximately 200 teachers for licensure.

“It is an honor to have this opportunity to help move our college and its mission forward,” Fairbrother said.

Dixie Thompson, vice provost and dean of the Graduate School, will chair the search committee for a new dean.

Other committee members are:

  • Hollie Raynor, interim assistant dean for research and professor of nutrition
  • Sherry Bell, professor and head of the Department of Theory and Practice in Teacher Education
  • Hillary Fouts, professor of child and family studies
  • Jennifer Jabson Tree, associate professor of public health
  • Steve Waller, professor of kinesiology, recreation, and sport studies
  • Jeff Cochran, professor and head of the Department of Educational Psychology and Counseling
  • Terry Ishitani, associate professor of educational leadership and policy studies
  • James Williams, assistant professor of retail, hospitality, and tourism management
  • Jules Morris, director of marketing and communications in the college

The college includes the Bailey Graduate School of Education (which includes the Departments of Educational Leadership and Policy Studies, Educational Psychology and Counseling, and Theory and Practice in Teacher Education) and the Departments of Child and Family Studies; Kinesiology, Recreation, and Sport Studies; Nutrition; Public Health; and Retail, Hospitality, and Tourism Management. The college is also home to 17 centers, institutes, and academies.

Media coverage: News Sentinel, Monica Kast, May 8; Daily Beacon, May 8


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Jules Morris (865-719-7072,