Janet L. McCoy


AUBURN -- John Heilman, a faculty member at Auburn University for 26 years, has been named dean of the College of Liberal Arts, Provost William F. Walker has announced.

The appointment of Heilman, who has served as interim dean for the past year, was effective June 1.

"John has done a great job managing the College of Liberal Arts during some very difficult times," Walker said. "He has shown courage and demonstrated to me that he can hold his own in difficult situations. I feel he will represent the students, faculty and alumni very well."

Heilman said, "I'm deeply grateful for the privilege of serving the college and Auburn University in this role. I look forward to working closely with our students, faculty, staff, alumni and friends."

Heilman said he foresees the college "addressing the issues of role, resources and respect. It will be important for us to communicate the centrality of our work to Auburn's mission and to document the quality and efficiency with which we do this work. A key to our message will be the contribution we make to the education of Auburn's undergraduates through the core curriculum and our degree programs."

Heilman has held numerous faculty and administrative posts at AU since 1973, most recently as interim dean, a position he has held since April 1998. As interim dean, Heilman's responsibilities have centered on the college's participation in AU's strategic planning process, which has included formulating and implementing recommendations for program priorities, reorganization and budget allocation as well as all aspects of administration of the College of Liberal Arts.

Following the 1997 death of Liberal Arts Dean Gordon Bond, Heilman and Rebekah Pindzola, both associate deans in the college, were named as interim co-dean for one year.

In 1992, Heilman was named associate dean for Research and Development in the college, where he was primarily responsible for helping faculty identify extramural and intramural funding for projects.

During his first 19 years at AU, Heilman was a full-time faculty member in the Department of Political Science, rising from the rank of instructor to full professor. He served three years as main campus coordinator of the Ph.D. program in public administration and developed and directed several extramural funded projects. He initiated an exchange program in public administration with Twente University in the Netherlands which is still in place today.

Heilman earned the bachelor's degree from Lafayette College and the master's and doctoral degrees in political science from New York University.

The College of Liberal Arts, which includes the School of Fine Arts, has 14 departments, more than 260 full-time faculty and an enrollment of more than 4,600 students at the undergraduate and graduate level.

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CONTACT: Heilman, 334/844-2184; and Walker, 334/844-5571.