Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Georgia State University names new provost

Georgia State University President Mark P. Becker announced today (July 1) that Dr. Risa Palm will assume the role of senior vice president for academic affairs and provost, beginning Sept. 1. Palm, who is currently the provost and vice chancellor for academic affairs at The State University of New York (SUNY) System, succeeds Ronald J. Henry who will retire this summer after 15 years of service.

“With more than three decades of experience in leadership posts at some of the nation’s premier universities, Dr. Palm is the ideal candidate to help propel Georgia State University into the future as a leading urban research university,” Becker said. “Her focus on excellence in research, instruction and learning is in line with our goal of attracting outstanding faculty and students to our unique and thriving campus.”

Palm began her tenure at SUNY in October 2006. Prior to that she served as executive vice chancellor and provost at Louisiana State University; and from 1997–2003, she was dean of the College of Arts and Sciences at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill.

“I am excited to be joining the Georgia State family,” Palm said. “I am deeply committed to the mission of the public urban research university, and believe that Georgia State is poised to become a national leader. I look forward to working with President Becker, and to joining this winning team that will bring Georgia State to the forefront.”

Palm received both a B.A. degree in history, with a minor in French, and a B.S. degree in social studies education from the University of Minnesota. She subsequently received an M.A. degree in geography from the same institution. In 1972, she was awarded a Ph.D. in geography from the University of Minnesota. From 1972 to 1981, she was a faculty member, beginning her career as an assistant professor at the University of California, Berkeley.

Other previous administrative positions include: dean of the College of Arts and Sciences at the University of Oregon (1991–97); associate vice chancellor for research and dean of the Graduate School at the University of Colorado, Boulder (1987–91); associate vice chancellor for academic affairs at the University of Colorado, Boulder (1984–87); and associate dean of the College of Arts and Sciences at the University of Colorado, Boulder (1981–84).

Palm is married to David Greenland, Ph.D., a professor of climatology. They have one son, Dr. John Greenland, Ph.D., M.D., who is a resident at Beth Israel Deaconess hospital in Boston. She also enjoys playing Baroque chamber music on the harpsichord.

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