The University of Wyoming board of trustees approved two new deans and the new director of the American Heritage Center last week at the board’s meeting.
David Jones, who has been the interim dean of the university’s College of Health Sciences for the past two years, was formally appointed dean by the board. Peter Parolin, an associate professor of English, was announced as the new dean of the Honors College, where he had previously been an associate dean. Finally, religious studies professor Paul Flesher was approved to take the helm of the heritage center.
Jones has been a faculty member at UW since 2001, according to a press release, and has served in various administrative roles at the school in recent years. Before becoming interim dean of the health sciences college, he was vice president for academic affairs for two years, until July 2016.
In a statement, Provost Kate Miller praised Jones’ “strong leadership.” In the same release, Jones said he was “delighted” with the promotion.
In the Honors College, Parolin will replace Donal Skinner, who left for a similar role at Ohio University. The Honors College at UW is still relatively young, having been created under the Laurie Nichols administration. Parolin has been at UW for more than two decades, according to the school, and has served in leadership roles within the English department, where his work has focused on theater and culture.
“I have loved working at UW for over 20 years. It is a Wyoming treasure, a remarkable institution that provides extraordinary opportunities to students,” Parolin said in a statement. “It is a privilege to work with our Honors College students. These young people blow me away. In addition to their excellent academic records, they are ambitious to make a difference in the world.”
Finally, Flesher was announced as the next director of the heritage center, which maintains the university’s archives and has a vast collection that includes state and national history. A faculty member since 1993 and an ancient religions historian, Flesher established first the religious studies department and later UW’s Saturday University program, according to the school.
“We’re delighted that Dr. Flesher, a national and international scholar, has agreed to direct the AHC, a core facility for the state and a hub for international understanding of the West,” Miller, the provost, said in a statement. “Through his Saturday University work, he has established strong connections with museums and archives across Wyoming, and his commitment to serving the state fits nicely with the AHC’s mission.”