Interim Dean Named for the Clark Honors College

August 8, 2017

Dear Colleagues,

It is my pleasure to let you know that Karen Ford, divisional dean for humanities in the College of Arts and Sciences, has accepted my offer to serve a one-year appointment as interim dean of the Robert D. Clark Honors College. Karen will also continue in her role as a divisional dean in CAS.

This is an exciting time for our honors college. With our goal of nurturing brilliant young minds, it is important that we have a leader who will not only keep us on our course, but also achieve even greater success in the future. I believe that Karen is that person.

Karen has served in many leadership roles at the UO, as associate dean, department head in English, and director of the Creative Writing Program. She received a bachelor of arts in English from California State University at Sacramento, a master’s degree in English from the University of California at Davis, and a PhD in English from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. She is the recipient of an American Council of Learned Societies yearlong fellowship, a National Endowment for the Humanities summer stipend, and three UO teaching awards, the Ersted Award for Distinguished Teaching, the Thomas F. Herman Faculty Achievement Award for Distinguished Teaching, and a Williams Fellowship.  Last year, she received the university’s Martin Luther King Jr. Award.

A specialist in 19th- and 20th-century American poetry, Karen is an expert on how writers employ poetic forms for social and political purposes.

I have asked Karen to work closely with Terry Hunt as he transitions from his deanship here to his new position at the University of Arizona. Karen’s appointment will begin in mid-August. We will launch a search for the deanship of the honors college soon.

Please join me in welcoming Karen Ford to her new role.


Jayanth Banavar
Provost and Senior Vice President