Dr. Roy Sonnema, interim dean of the College of Humanities and Social Science at Colorado State University-Pueblo, has been named the permanent dean effective immediately, according to CSU-Pueblo Provost Dr. Russ Meyer.
Sonnema was selected from more than 30 candidates in a national pool. Three finalists, including Sonnema, interviewed on campus earlier this month: Dr. Charles J. Brody, Professor and Chair of Sociology, University of North Carolina-Charlotte; Dr. Jeffrey R. Breese, Associate Dean of the School of Education and Human Services at Marymount University, Arlington, Va.
The CHASS dean provides leadership and administration to the faculty, staff, and students in the College of Humanities and Social Sciences. The dean fosters excellence in teaching, research and service to the campus and community for advancing the mission and goals of the College, the University, and the CSU System, and for participating in outreach efforts throughout the community. The College offers majors in 12 disciplines (art, history, English, liberal studies, mass communications, music, political science, psychology, social work, sociology, and Spanish), along with minors in 20 disciplines. In addition, the College is responsible for university-wide general education courses in composition, arts & humanities, history, and social sciences.
“Dr. Sonnema had the combination of experience and expertise that made him the best choice for CHASS and for CSU-Pueblo,” Meyer said. “He had strong support among both faculty and his administrative colleagues, and I’m certain he will be instrumental in moving CHASS forward in coming years.”
Sonnema has served as interim dean of CHASS since July 2007, when then CHASS Dean Russ Meyer resigned to accept the position of Provost and Chief Academic Officer at the University.
He joined the CSU-Pueblo faculty in 2000 as chair of the art department. From 2003-05, he was elected to serve two, one-year terms as faculty representative to the governing board of the Colorado State University System. Prior to that, he spent 11 years as an associate professor of art history at Georgia Southern University. Sonnema earned a bachelor’s degree from Calvin College (MI), a master’s degree from California State University, Fullerton, and a doctoral degree in the history of art from the University of California, Berkeley.
“I view the work of the College of Humanities and Social Sciences as central to the mission of the university; the faculty, staff, and students are outstanding, and I am honored to have the opportunity to serve as dean,” Sonnema said. “My main goal will be to promote academic excellence in every way I can. The college is fortunate to have a great team of people, and I look forward to working with everyone in the coming semesters.”