UT College of Fine Arts: Dempster named dean
After running UT's College of Fine Arts for a year, interim Dean Doug Dempster has gotten the job for keeps
At last, Doug Dempster can take that pesky "interim" out of his job title. The University of Texas professor has been running the College of Fine Arts over on the 40 Acres since the retirement of previous Dean Robert Freeman in August 2006, but in an acting capacity, while the university undertook a national search for a permanent successor. Dempster had a lot to recommend him for the job, not the least of which was the five years he spent as the college's senior associate dean before stepping into the dean's shoes last year. In that position, he took a lead role in boosting the funds spent by the college on scholarships and teaching assistants, getting the college to place greater emphasis on arts education, seeing that the Fine Arts Library got a technological upgrade, and getting the Blanton Museum of Art more operational support. And before he came to Austin, Dempster spent 18 years at the Eastman School of Music, where he served as Humanities Department chair and dean of academic affairs and designed and directed the Arts Leadership Program, a professional development curriculum. Recognizing what they had, the UT powers-that-be decided that the best man for the dean's office was the one already in it and confirmed Dempster as permanent dean last week. In commenting on the appointment, UT President William Powers Jr. applauded Dempster's "keen understanding of the value and importance of the arts on our campus and their vital connection to our local community and the larger society."