MSU Billings hires historian, longtime education advocate as next Provost, Academic Vice Chancellor
July 23, 2008
Dan Carter, 657-2269
MSU BILLINGS NEWS SERVICES — Dr. D’Ann Campbell, a historian and longtime higher education advocate with a broad range of experience in both the public and private sector, has accepted the position of Provost and Academic Vice Chancellor, the university announced on Wednesday.
“The unique blend of Dr. Campbell’s academic background, her leadership philosophy and her commitment to innovation, communication and creativity makes her a great fit for MSU Billings,” Chancellor Ron Sexton said. “We’re excited about having her join us.”
Sexton said Campbell will arrive Aug. 11 and begin preparations for the 2008-09 academic year, which begins on Sept. 3. As chief academic leader, the provost directs planning and assessment of academic programs and student learning outcomes at the university.
She replaces Dr. George White, who held that position in an interim role for the past three years.
Contacted at her home Wednesday, Campbell said she is eager to start her new job and looks forward to being at a university where she felt at home. As a Colorado native whose family roots go back four generations, she said her family would often take vacations through Montana. During her two-day interview in Billings earlier this month, her earlier impressions about the state were confirmed.
“I have visited a lot of campuses to either teach or do training and I’ve never felt so welcome,” she said of her MSU Billings experience. “People care about each other, they care about the students and they care about the community and that’s what I’m about.”
Campbell, who holds a Ph.D., in history from the University of North Carolina, currently resides in Colorado. She is director of the American History Projects, which works on designing history education programs and training of K-12 teachers in American history.
She was formerly the dean of academics at the United States Coast Guard Academy and served in various academic and leadership capacities at White Pines, New Hampshire College, The Sage Colleges, Austin Peay State University, US Military Academy, Indiana University, Bloomington, and the Newberry Library (Chicago). She has written, won and directed grants totaling $6 million and has written a book on the role of women in World War II and has had scholarly articles published in a wide variety of publications.
She said her broad base of experience will help her as she works with academic deans, faculty and the community in the future.
Resources across the country can help find solutions to varying academic and student demographic challenges.
“All of my experiences have helped me prepare for this job,” she said.
Her first task when arriving at MSU Billings will be “spending a lot of time listening and learning,” she said. She will then concentrate on working with faculty, staff and administrators who have worked on accreditation plans for the university and the different colleges.
Campbell is married to Richard Jensen, a nationally known retired historian who continues to be an active scholar. Their twins, Liz and Jo, graduated from Smith/Mt Holyoke in 2007. Liz will attend Princeton for graduate work in aerospace engineering this fall. Jo will attend law school in a year after she finishes as Director of Students to Save Social Security, a non-profit, bipartisan organization based in Washington, D.C.