Administrative personnel moves approved
July 16, 2003
KALAMAZOO -- The resignation of a vice president was accepted and the appointment of two deans, an associate dean and leaders for six academic units were approved by the Western Michigan University Board of Trustees at its July 16 meeting.
The board accepted the resignation of Jeffrey Breneman, vice president for legislative affairs and WMU chief of staff, effective July 31. Breneman, who joined the staff in 1998 as assistant vice president for legislative affairs, is leaving WMU to become director of government relations for Bosch North America, based in Farmington Hills, Mich.
The board also approved the previously announced appointments of Rick Maloney as dean of the College of Aviation, effective July 15, and Dr. Gary Wegenke as dean of the College of Education, effective April 1. In addition, Dr. Wendy Z. Ford was named associate dean of the College of Arts and Sciences.
The board also approved the appointments of Dr. Deborah Barnes as director of the Lewis Walker Institute for the Study of Race and Ethnic Relations, effective July 1; Dr. Bernard Han as chairperson of the Department of Business Information Systems, effective July 1; William Rantz as chairperson of the faculty in the College of Aviation, effective April 1; Dr. Cynthia Running-Johnson as chairperson of the Department of Foreign Languages, effective July 1; Dr. Ajay Samant as chairperson of the Department of Finance and Commercial Law, effective July 1; and Dr. Brian Wilson as interim chairperson of the Department of Philosophy, effective July 1. Wilson also is chairperson of the Department of Comparative Religion and will retain that position.
In related action, the board also approved the previously announced appointment of Steve Hawkins as head men's basketball coach, effective May 1.
Wendy Z. Ford has served on the WMU faculty since 1993, when she became an assistant professor of communication. In 1998, she became an associate professor in that department and also began teaching in WMU's Women's Studies program. A customer service and organizational communication specialist, Ford is the author of "Communicating With Customers: Service Approaches, Ethics and Impact," which was published in 1998. Before joining WMU, she taught at the University of Arkansas at Little Rock and the University of Maryland. She earned her bachelor's degree from the University of Texas at Austin in 1986 and her master's and doctoral degrees from the University of Maryland at College Park in 1989 and 1992, respectively.
Deborah Barnes comes to WMU from Gettysburg College, where she served as associate professor of English and coordinator of the African American Studies Program. She also served there for three years as co-director of the Writing Program for College-Bound African American High School Students and was chairperson of the President's Commission for Racial and Ethnic Diversity. Barnes has served as recording secretary, vice president and program chair, and an advisory board member of the Toni Morrison Society, an official author society of the American Literature Association. She earned her bachelor's degree from the Tuskegee Institute in 1978, a master's degree from North Carolina A&T State University in 1987 and a doctoral degree in English from Howard University in 1992.
Bernard Han joined the University in 1998 as an associate professor of business information systems. In 2000, he became program director of computer information systems in that department, a post he held until his current promotion. His career includes teaching stints at Washington State University, Taiwan's National Chung-Hsing University and Xi'an University of Technology in China. A four-time winner of the Haworth College of Business Faculty Research Development Award, Han has won research grants from Microsoft, the Office of Taiwan Provincial Agricultural and Forest Management, and the National Science Council in Taiwan. He earned his bachelor's degree from National Chiao-Tung University in Taiwan in 1977, an MBA from Arizona State University in 1981 and a doctoral degree from the University of Washington in 1989.
William Rantz, who is currently pursuing a doctoral degree in behavioral analysis at WMU, has taught in the College of Aviation since 1993 and most recently was chief flight instructor and an assistant professor. His background also includes work as a charter pilot and manager of a private-sector flight school. His research includes analysis of computer-based tools for flight instruction as well as human factors issues in aviation. Rantz earned both bachelor's and master's degrees from WMU.
Cynthia Running-Johnson has taught French in WMU's
Department of Foreign Languages since 1986, rising through the
ranks to become a full professor in 1998. She also has served
11 semesters as a study abroad director. Before coming to WMU,
Running-Johnson taught at St. John's University and the University
of Wisconsin, Madison. She earned her bachelor's degree at Luther
College in 1975, her master's degree from the University of Wisconsin
the following year, a certificate from Ecole du Louvre in Paris
in 1978 and her doctoral degree from the University of Wisconsin
Brian Wilson, who has been chairperson of the Department of Comparative Religion since 2001, joined the WMU religion faculty in 1996. He previously was coordinator of the "Religious Contours of California" project at the University of California, Santa Barbara and an editorial assistant for the journal Religion. He also served as a Peace Corps volunteer in Honduras. An expert on American religious history, Wilson earned a bachelor's degree from Stanford University in 1982 and master's and doctoral degrees from the University of California, Santa Barbara in 1991 and 1996, respectively.
Media contact: Cheryl Roland, 269 387-8400, firstname.lastname@example.org