Dean, College of the Environment

University of Washington
Seattle, Washington State
Nov 19, 2020
Dec 19, 2020
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The University of Washington seeks an exceptional leader as their next dean for the College of the Environment. Further elevating the College’s profile, this leader will be the inaugural holder of the Maggie Walker Deanship, established by long-time advocate for the College of the Environment and noted community philanthropist Maggie Walker.  

The College is one of the most well-regarded colleges in the world, located in a region where environmental goals are highly valued. Its programs in oceanography, atmospheric sciences and geosciences are highly ranked on a consistent basis. The College of the Environment is comprised of the following core academic and research units, which are home to numerous research centers, labs and other groups: School of Aquatic and Fishery Sciences, School of Environmental and Forest Sciences, School of Marine and Environmental Affairs, School of Oceanography, Department of Atmospheric Sciences, Department of Earth and Space Sciences, Center for Quantitative Science, Climate Impacts Group, Cooperative Institute for Climate, Ocean and Ecosystem Studies, EarthLab, Friday Harbor Laboratories, Marine Biology, Program on Climate Change, Program on the Environment, Quaternary Research Center, UW Botanic Gardens, Washington NASA Space Grant and Washington Sea Grant. The College provides eight undergraduate degrees, 16 graduate degrees, 10 minors and two certificate programs to 1,106 undergraduate and 463 graduate students who are supported by more than 1,000 faculty, researchers and staff. While the College itself is only a decade old, some of the academic units it includes are among the most established on campus.

The next dean of the College will report directly to the provost and executive vice president for academic affairs. With highly respected programs and growing prominence, the College presents its next dean with an exemplary platform for advancing innovative and interdisciplinary teaching and scholarly activity on issues critical to ecological planetary health. Building from this considerable base, the next dean will lead visioning, manage planning implementation, drive equity, diversity and inclusion toward results, foster academic excellence and opportunity, promote collaboration and internal relationships, engage the community and develop external partnerships, advance fundraising and enhance resources.

The University of Washington seeks an established scholar and a strategic leader of people and programs with a track record of success within a highly complex environment. The ideal candidate will possess an earned terminal degree within a relevant discipline and a record of teaching, community engagement and research commensurate with an appointment to the College faculty at the rank of full professor. The search committee also will consider candidates whose contributions as a practitioner warrant special consideration.

Lastly, a history of progressive leadership and administrative, personnel and financial management experience is essential. As the College of the Environment's chief spokesperson and leader of efforts to secure both philanthropic investments and strategic partnerships, the successful candidate will demonstrate outstanding presentation and relationship-building skills. The position requires key attributes of successful academic leaders, including a commitment to shared governance, a highly collaborative and transparent leadership style, a successful record of implementing diversity, equity and inclusion best practices and core leadership competencies: unquestioned integrity, outstanding judgment, an entrepreneurial spirit and strong diplomatic skills. For more information, please visit,

WittKieffer is assisting the University of Washington in this search. All applications, nominations and inquiries are invited. Applications should include, as separate documents, a CV or resume and a letter of interest addressing the themes in this profile. For fullest consideration, candidate materials should be received by January 29, 2021. Application materials should be submitted using WittKieffer’s candidate portal. Additional materials may be requested from candidates as the search process progresses. Nominations and inquiries can be directed to Robert Luke and Julia Venetos at  

University of Washington is an affirmative action and equal opportunity employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, national origin, age, protected veteran or disabled status, or genetic information.