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14.05.2012 in Current News Bookmark and Share

York appoints a new dean for the Faculty of Environmental Studies

Washington State University (WSU) Professor Noël Sturgeon will be the next dean of the Faculty of Environmental Studies (FES) at York University. Sturgeon will take up a five-year term as dean, starting August 1.

The announcement was made yesterday by York President & Vice-Chancellor Mamdouh Shoukri. The appointment of Sturgeon was made after extensive consultation and was approved by the Board of Governors Executive Committee on May 10.

“The Provost and I are pleased to welcome Dr. Noël Sturgeon back to York University,” said Shoukri. “I look forward to working with her in this important portfolio, and I hope all members of the Faculty will join me in congratulating her and welcoming her.”

Noël Sturgeon

Sturgeon is a professor of Women’s Studies in the Department of Critical Culture, Gender & Race Studies at WSU. She is also a member of the University’s Graduate Faculty in American Studies. In 2010-2011, she spent a term at York University in the Faculty of Environmental Studies as a Fulbright-York University Chair. She has also held visiting appointments at the JFK Institute for North American Studies, Freie Universität, Berlin; Murdoch University, Perth, Australia; the University of California, Santa Cruz; and Rutgers University.

From 1998 to 2008, Sturgeon served as chair of Women’s Studies at WSU, enhancing the curriculum and building the unit from a program to a department with majors and minors, the only online women’s studies major in the United States and a graduate program. Following her term as chair, she was engaged in planning for the merger of the Women’s Studies Department with the Comparative Ethnic Studies Department and the American Studies Program to create the Department of Critical Culture, Gender & Race Studies. She also founded and directed two research units, the Centre for Social and Environmental Justice and Gendering Research Across the Campuses, and has been involved in several international collaborations. Sturgeon has been deeply involved in a number of university efforts to promote diversity, environmental research, women’s programs and interdisciplinary research efforts at WSU.

“I am thrilled to be joining FES and York University, and honored by the confidence expressed in me by the President, Provost and search committee,” said Sturgeon. “I’ve long admired the excellent work being done by FES and look forward to future accomplishments together.”

Sturgeon holds a PhD in History of Consciousness (Politics) from the University of California, Santa Cruz. She has a strong scholarly record and enjoys an international reputation as an interdisciplinary feminist scholar, specializing in environmental justice cultural studies, feminist theory, social movements, and anti-racist and environmental movements. Her work has focused on questions of social change, cultural representation and policy shifts arising from multi-issue movements such as anti-militarist and anti-nuclear direct action, ecofeminism and environmental justice, in a range of cultural and historical contexts.

In making the announcement, Shoukri thanked Barbara Rahder, outgoing dean, for her dedication and service to York.

“I would like to thank Barbara for her outstanding leadership and friendship,” Shoukri said. “During her time at York, she was instrumental in developing York’s environmental vision and advancing environmental knowledge and social change.”

Added Shoukri: “I am grateful to Barbara for all that she has achieved over the years at York and wish her well in all of her future endeavours.”

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